PARALLELS OF HISTORY: WILL YOU ENABLE THE PAST OR TAKE A STAND?

  • Australia: Religious Discrimination Bill 2nd draft (Conservative Coalition)
  • UK: Conservative (Tory) win election + public protests ensue, threats to minorities
  • India: Citizenship Amendment Bill (on the basis of religion passed by right-wing religious party) + public protests ensue
  • USA: Don’t get me started.

Yeah …

There’s a lot of overlap here. And not forgetting the ongoing protests and struggles in South America, Hong Kong, the Middle East …..

And massive ecological damage …

The timing of these bills and protests stuck out as sore, concordant thumbs.

This is xenophobia and bigotry mandated by the state. And you can kiss any illusions that they will stop here goodbye.

People get dicey whenever anyone mentions the Holocaust. But here’s why it’s important as a warning.

This is not to say that Jewish lives are more important than anyone else’s…. In fact : Whilst 6 million Jews were killed, 11 million of other ethnicities (Roma, Soviet citizens, Poles, homosexuals, people with disabilities) were also killed.

Please remember that before you jump the gun. In fact, the figures may be even higher.

The reason why the Holocaust is so terrifying is that it was legal, in terms of the machinery of the state – right in the heart of Europe.

This was the continent that brought us modern political philosophies of liberty, liberalism and the humanist tradition.

Whilst there are older traditions and far more ancient kingdoms, the framework for the nation-state and it’s idea of sovereignty arises from the 1648 treaty of Westphalia.

In short, Europe was the birthplace of contemporary political institutions, their scope, language and agency. The same institutions and structures of power that continue to shape the world today.

And it was right there … in the heart of it all … that the Holocaust was allowed to occur.

It is a warning as to what happens when we hand power over to tyrants. And that it can happen anywhere.

We remember it now as a horrifying legacy of history too staggering to fully compute, a monstrosity.

It didn’t start out that way though.

The hate and bigotry was incrementally introduced. Step by step, the stripping away of citizenship, basic human rights, dignities. Each day normalizing the loss of freedoms a little more than the last.

It didn’t happen overnight.

When I think about the migrant children held in camps at the US border, the parallels are too horrible to miss.

In Germany, not every citizen was a Nazi, some stood by and let it happen. There was of course resistance, but also passive allowance.

Their leader was initially seen with admiration for his charisma and ability to quickly rebuild a nation. These were not the ‘villains of Europe’ from the get go.

Hitler won 36% of the vote (2nd highest) in the 1932 German presidential election. He was nominated as Chancellor in a legal way the very next year.

This was not a military coup or random event … This was a very legal transfer of power literally called the Enabling Act of 1933.

Which is why it pays to pay attention to what is happening in the legislature. Politics, whether we like it or not, affects us all.

It’s going to take watchful eyes and engaged action. We must look out for our fellow humans, irrespective of their race or creed.

We must be aware. We must remember that democratic institutions and elections do not always lead to life-affirming political arrangements for all.

That’s one of the biggest myths of democracy. A myth that I feel holds people back from realizing the full horror of what is incrementally getting normalized across the planet.

Despite all this … Despair and disconnection is not the solution.

We must remember that government derives its power from a shared belief in legitimacy amongst the people. And ultimately it is the people who have the power to empower or dissolve an existing political structure.

Part of why things seem so scary and hard to change is because we’ve been conditioned into thinking otherwise.

Speak up. Speak out. Don’t enable these acts of hate with your apathy, silence or passivity.

Take your stand. Make it count. This is the time.

Dr. Bairavee Balasubramaniam PhD

The Sky Priestess

© Bairavee Balasubramaniam, 2019. All rights reserved.

Image: Pixabay, Solidarity-Help Statue.

7 thoughts on “PARALLELS OF HISTORY: WILL YOU ENABLE THE PAST OR TAKE A STAND?

  1. Jstar says:

    If only more people realised that the heat on the pot is slowly being turned up. We all think the water is warm and going to stay pleasant. But in actual fact it’s about to get to hot and before we know it is to hot to respond and jump out. Australia like other countries are controlled by neoliberal media and government. Thank you Dr Bairavee for your insights and posts. Thank you for sharing, I hope to that people wake up and see how these old out dated systems of control are but the very evil they proclaim not to be.

    Reply
  2. Deni Sevenoaks says:

    Thank you Sister Bairavee. I was born just 3 years after that world war, even so, it had a huge effect on me. As I got older, in my early teens, I became intensely interested in studying and trying to understand how such a thing could happen. Having lived through and watching the many eras since of wars perpetrated by my own and other Western countries, for greed and nothing else, and creating shattered monsters of young men returning from these wars. I’ve watched us be continually numbed by a complex of patriarchal, capitalist, military industrial greed and hatred. And continue to watch with deep sadness, its effectiveness in growing the fearful hungry ghost in so many of us.I’ve been a radical activist, still am in my older way.

    And yet I see the growth of love and hope and desire for deepest healing. Let’s keep that up. We can do it. I know we can.♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏🌹🌹🌹🌹🌹🌹

    Reply
  3. larrikin2020vivien says:

    Yes. Absolutely. Rick Levine, astrologer, posts about the historical events that have occurred with every conjunction and opposition of Pluto and Saturn, which happen three times a century. This is occurring now and becomes exact Jan 12/13 2020 as many will know. As now, those with education and privilege have, and have had, the opportunities to reshape the way we handle power and create laws that affect huge numbers of people.

    Positive uses of the conjunction include the abolition of slavery first throughout the then British Empire and later in the USA and later still the Civil Rights movement in the US. More arrogant and ultimately catastrophic decisions by British and European powers marked the separation of India and Pakistan resulting in half a million deaths and ongoing religious conflict resurfacing with Modi and Hindu nationalism, the creation of modern Israel at the expense of Palestine and the consequences, the rise of Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini and the murder of millions of citizens in gulags and concentration camps. (A look at significant dates in the history of European colonisation and also the rise of despots in Africa since de-colonisation began, might be an interesting, if sobering, study. )

    You are absolutely correct, as I see it, that the current right wing authoritarian governments elected, (think USA, UK, Australia, Brazil, Philippines, India) on the basis of lazy appeals to populism, anti immigration sentiment, and perceived economic self interest all mask the power of international corporations to do as they please. They will inevitably become more restrictive and repressive as they try to hold on to power. We can expect increasing manipulation of our electorates by corporate interests which have scant regard for democracy. As an example the last Australian election was essentially bought by a billionaire who ran unsuccessful candidates in every seat, to gain exposure for right wing advertising with the express purpose of preventing a labor government from coming to power. And then there’s the Russians and the US….

    Now is the time to speak out about abuses of power and erosion of freedoms because “liberal” democracies are being eroded by all major parties in every direction. Owning our power to speak out is our privilege and responsibility as educated people. Now IS the time to speak out to our neighbours, friends, family, to write or re-post significant articles, to be active in specific action groups, to conceivably join a progressive political pressure group or whatever we feel is within our own power to do, now entering 2020 is the time to do it.

    Reply
  4. Sandra says:

    An accurate and important message. Thank you.

    Reply

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