Jim Horton | Apply the Proper Lens to History

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

Re: Gary Horton (no relative), commentary, Aug. 5.

Bias is a hard taskmaster. It requires you to ruction on something less than truth. It is the ghost that lives under your bed that you are afraid to look at. 

The concept that history is a moving element that we participate in must not register with him. He talks about 1776 like the men who did these earth-shattering events should have been other than what they were.

The men who conquered Mount Suribachi were all heroes in my book, but I’m guessing you could have found flaws in them. You can not look back on history with no insight and have any perspective at all.

President Harry Truman had the atomic bombs dropped on Japanese cities to end World War II and many people today want to criticize that action. Couldn’t we have done something less drastic? If you do not bother to read your history, you might think that argument might hold water.

We had just finished the fighting for Okinawa and it was some of the most bitter fighting of the war. The Japanese were fanatic fighters and it was estimated that invading Japan would cost a huge toll in American lives. Truman himself said it best when he stated every mother in the United States would have come to D.C. and lynched him.

When you look back on history, you have to look at the complete picture, not just a snippet. You can not just read history but you must understand it also. These people did not function in a vacuum but were part of a whole chain of events that colored the action they took.

Gary is fusing about the incarceration rate here in the U.S. I would be willing to bet that someone who wanted to find the answer could not just quote some statistics that don’t prove anything. Gary, I don’t know if you have read Thomas Sowell but his style of writing is predicated on peeling away that which is false or innocuous and dealing with the pure issue. It is truly surprising how truth can simplify things and bring answers to the fore.

Just as more video is coming out about the George Floyd killing, more information gives us greater insight into the why and the how of the incident. We have the incarceration rate we have for very specific reasons. They are very specific to each incident and not to wholesale policy.

Lawlessness is not pretty and people being hurt is a tragedy, particularly when they are the innocents. Our touchy/feely liberal governors and mayors should not consider their actions as a path to reelection. Some may survive this cataclysm and some probably will not, and they should not. Deference to violence only causes more violence. President Donald Trump is right that there must be law and order or else we will lose what we have.

During our Civil War, there were draft riots in New York. The city was in flames and people were dying. Ulysses S. Grant pulled the entire 6th Corps out of the line at Petersburg and sent them by boat to New York. The 6th Corps ended the riots in a day.

Napoleon ended the French Revolution with what he called a whiff of grapeshot. Violence does not have to be tolerated. On occasion, strong action has to be taken to protect the innocent. No one has a right to riot and if you step over that line, then you are subject to the consequences.

Jim Horton


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