Victor Davis Hanson: "Our society suffers from the tyranny of the present." He bemoans our lot. Perhaps this should be especially noted on May 8th. On this day the Germans laid down their arms in 1945. Hanson:
We rarely mention our forebears. These were the millions of less fortunate Americans who built the country, handed down to us our institutions, and died keeping them safe.
Such amnesia about them was not always so. Public acknowledgment of prior generations characterized the best orations of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt and John Kennedy, who looked for guidance from, and gave thanks to, their ancestors.
Bruce Cole, the Chairman of the National Andowment for the Humanities, has also addressed the amnesia problem.
Of course, we at the Ashbrook Center also understand this problem. Along with the Department of History and Political Science, we work at making sure that our students do not have such amnesia and they understand the things for which we stand. We have taken our work one step further. We have established a Masters degree in American History and Government. The work for this degree will be done entirely in the Summer for it is intended for high school teachers. It is a very intensive
program, with a great core curriculum, with outstanding professors
teaching them. Have a look at this unique program. Classes will begin this next month; there are four sessions each Summer.
The problem is not only amnesia. There is also a problem with arrogance. Many histories teach with an attitude that all who have acted in history were mentally inferior to the present generation. I mean, they didn’t have M-TV did they?