R U Thinking – Or Just Repeating?

Posted By on October 24, 2012

History is such a fickle friend, companion and “lover”! You think you get to know her and then, BOOM! You find out she led you astray. You “learn” something. It “sounds” good. It “looks” good, then, BAM! You listen to, or even read something written by someone you think you can trust, only to discover, CRASH! They were incorrect in their information.

I feel like I’m writing a messed up, crazy script for the old Batman television series. “Golly, gee, Batman!”

Most people read my posts and never question me. I hate that! A few, very few ask questions. While an even fewer number challenge me. I wish you ALL would challenge me. Why? What if I’m wrong? Who will correct me? It is in the challenge that I have to dig a little deeper, search a little longer, research a bit more thoroughly. Then I either become even more convinced of my position, or knowledge OR I discover I’ve been incorrect, or even flat out WRONG!

Over the years of studying, researching and discovering the treasures of history I’ve come to know one thing above all else, to be a SKEPTIC is a good thing. Why? Because all too often the purveyors of history often have some hidden agenda, some preconceived notions, some lingering bone to pick with someone, some inadequacy in their research; all of which lead to incorrect information. Yes, these even apply to me. We’re all guilty.

All too often we will sit in a class and take the information being delivered at face value, after all isn’t he or she the professor? Don’t they have a degree to back them up? Or even worse, they appear on a television show, yes, even Glenn Beck, and are touted as being experts. Therefore, they have to be right.

Then what happens? We go off spouting what we’ve “learned” and make ourselves out to be fools for having given in so readily. There is all types of misinformation out there. It all sounds good. It all reports to be based on facts and documentation, BUT IS IT? That is the question we should be asking.

In these past couple of years I’ve heard any number of things stated as historical “fact,” only to discover it is historically invalid, even with the most basic amount of research into the subject. Well, David, can you give us an example, or examples?

Well, I’m really glad you asked, and – yes – I can.

How many of you have heard in the past couple of years that John Hanson was really the “first black president of the United States”?WRONGWhere is the old grating buzzer when you need it, or even the gong? Even a cursory search of the this subject will uncover a plethora of information, and scholarly research which has been dedicated to debunking an entire series, or should I say, “pile” of untruths which are circulating about Mr. Hanson, and the most common of these is that he was “black.” Try it, prove me wrong with documented research, and if you find some contradictions, then comment and challenge me, I’ll respect you for it.

How about this? Texas is the only state in the Union which has the right to secede based on the “Texas Annexation Treaty of 1848,” or something like that? Or even further, Texas was the only State admitted to the Union in the manner it was since it was an independent Republic prior to joining the Union. Both of these are, again get the buzzer, WRONG! First, just a very simple fact. How could Texas have become a State based on a treaty from 1848 when it became a State on December 29th, 1845? Hmmm…. Can I prove it? YES! Can you disprove me? Go find the answer. I’ll even give you a hint. Go to The Avalon Project Documents in Law, History and Diplomacy, a work of the Yale Law School, Lillian Goldman Law Library as a start for you research.

Or, how about this one? Wentworth Cheswell was a black man who rode North the same night as Paul Revere to warn the colonists, namely Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys. His actions brought Ethan Allen et al  to the Battle of Bunker Hill which they helped win? Here comes the gong, WRONG! First, Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys were nowhere near Boston in the late Spring and Early Summer of 1775, they were in New York and its environs. Secondly, Wentworth Cheswell was home in Durham, New Hampshire in April, 1775. Therefore, he couldn’t have rode with Paul Revere to warn any one of the march of the “regulars” from Boston.

Well, well, see, even your most trusted sources can be wrong from time to time.

I challenge you to discipline yourself to read and listen to historians with a skeptical, and questioning mind. Don’t just believe everything you hear and read, even from MyStraightTalk.com. Go learn for yourself, study, research, become educated. And most importantly stop vomiting out whatever someone else told you about history. Go discover history’s rich treasures for yourself.

Now, I’m waiting for your comments and challenges. Good luck and happy hunting!

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