We have trouble coping with our present because we’ve lost our past
Summary: Americans know so little of our past, and much of what we know is wrong.
Might this contribute to our difficulties, our inability to see, understand, and grapple with our problems?
Here we example some of the worse examples of our hidden history.
How much might we benefit by reclaiming our past?
A people who cannot clearly see their past may have difficulty steering its way into the future — and become an easier subject for propaganda.
Especially a nation grounded in common beliefs — a national story — instead of shared religion or ethnicity.
So much of our common history is false, either blotted out by consensual amnesia or overlaid by myth.
It’s lightly hidden, available in books such as Tim Weiner’s Legacy of Fear (see this review) or Seymour Hersh’s The Dark Side of Camelot.
The truth is out there, but we prefer not to know.
Here are some other episodes of our lost history.
The rugged individualists who built America
Opening the wild west
The successful insurgency after the Civil War
How we won WWII
Separation of Church and State