Friday Firesmith – The Flat Earth

Oddly, I’ve had people question my first decade of memories. The photographic evidence of the first ten years of my life may have been manufactured, but from 1960 to 1970, the incident of photoshop was fairly low. This means that if my life before desegregation is falsified, there’s a vast conspiracy to paint this part of history in hues that are sharply black and white. I’ve heard sillier conspiracy theories in the last few years and it would seem that the only thing for a conspiracy to gain followers is for it to have no merit in fact whatsoever.

Stop for a moment and consider the Flat Earth Society. You and I both know how stupid this is, I would think, yet you also have to know there are some people who truly believe it. Consider how crazy it is to believe something discredited before people believed in Christ. Somehow, people forgot this was a fact, and decided to thank Magellan for proving the earth was round, and the fable that Columbus braved falling off the edge of the earth was born. It took a while, but now there are people who are once again telling other people the earth is not round, and you have to wonder why they value that narrative.

I’ve had people question my memory. They should. Memory is both fallible and it is malleable. If I was one person telling my story then it ought to be questioned harshly. Or, if there were many facts that were out of kilter about my story, or if my story could not be compared to others like it, yes, then it should be doubted. After all, I was ten years old.

Yet you cannot deny that you, and everyone you know, have memories of childhood, shared memories of childhood, and the first year of desegregation in Blakely Georgia was a terrible thing. There were still separate waiting rooms at Doctor’s Offices. There were still restaurants (with black cooks) who would only serve whites. There were events that were canceled forever, pools that closed, and things that simply ceased to exist before the powers that be allowed them to be anything but what they always had been.

Somehow, at some point in history, we lost the fact that the earth is round. We invented stories about a sailor who went against all everyone else knew to discover a New World, where civilization began anew in the wilderness. We now know all of that is a lie that there were already people who knew the earth was round, and the New World had been inhabited by human beings for thousands of years, and they were not Indians.

Yet even today, knowing that we know about the genocide Columbus started, we still have a holiday named in his honor, and now there are people who believe the earth is flat again.

There’s value in ignorance. Or rather there’s value in an ignorant population. Ignorant people can be more easily led, made to believe things without those people doing any research on the subject, and they’ll accept less because they know less than people who have knowledge and skill. Educating people will equalize them, which is why desegregation was fought against so very hard for so very long.

That’s why there are people who want to doubt my story. Because if they can convince other people it wasn’t that way, then they can erase knowledge of those times and if they can do that… where will it end, do you think?

The Holocaust Deniers are running out of eyewitnesses to confront them. The Flat Earthers are using computer-generated photos to prove their point. And there are people who tell me I did not witness my first ten years because it wasn’t really all that bad.

There’s value in that narrative, but the people who are looking to educate fewer Americans, or making it harder for Americans to be educated, are working against America.

I remember them doing it before.

Take Care,
Mike

Mike writes regularly at his site:  The Hickory Head Hermit.
 
Opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those of the management of this site.
 
16+

19 thoughts on “Friday Firesmith – The Flat Earth”

  1. And we have this……..
    Atlanta (CNN)Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams’ campaign is calling on Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp to resign following a report his office is using a controversial verification law to effectively suppress the minority vote in their race to become the state’s next governor.
    The demand from the Abrams campaign comes in response to an Associated Press report on records it obtained showing Georgia has put a hold on more than 53,000 voter registration applications — nearly seven-in-ten of them belonging to African Americans — because they failed to clear the state’s “exact match” standard.
    Under the policy, even the most minor discrepancy — like a typo or missing letter — between a voter’s registration and their drivers license, social security or state ID cards can be flagged.
    “As he has done for years, Brian Kemp is maliciously wielding the power of his office to suppress the vote for political gain and silence the voices of thousands of eligible voters — the majority of them people of color,” Abrams spokeswoman Abigail Collazo said in a statement.

    6+
    • In reply to the inaccurate accusations, Mr Kemps pointed out that voters can still cast their ballots using a provisional form, which then can be verified by the local election office. He said that it seems that so many applications are being checked is because the applications are deliberately being filled out incorrectly to generate problems.

      1+
      • Richard, I haven’t read anything (until now) that would even remotely suggest that filling out a voter registration form inaccurately might be some sort of sinister strategy by tens of thousands of people. Yes, instead of all these people getting together and realizing that tens of thousands of people could make a difference in the next election they intend to employ the “Typo Defense” so their ballots might do more harm. Thank you for the enlightenment. I feel so much smarter now.

        4+
      • Provisional ballots are placebo votes. The majority never get counted. It was written into the Help America Vote Act to be exactly that… knocked off the voter roll? Here, use this provisional (but fail to explain all the hoops one must jump to be sure it’s counted).

        This is why Exit Polls are so far off from actual results. People think their provisionals get counted.

        4+
      • in other words: One way or another, Kemp will have those votes invalidated. Held up so that they will not count in the upcoming election.

        What would have been the point of so many people “deliberately” filling out the apps incorrectly BEFORE he decided to confiscate them? They still would have been valid despite the minute errors. His “excuse” for having targeted them is as porous as a sieve, yet you’d prefer to believe it rather than the obvious.

        I deeply abhor racists like Kemps. And I thoroughly despise those who support said racist’s efforts while two-facedly decrying any taint of racism exists.

        4+
        • Lady, this is no more than those guys who claim it was not sexual assault because they didn’t “finish”. We’re not keeping you from voting we’re just not going to count your vote.

          1+
  2. I find your Friday Firesmith writings refreshing in subject matter which encourages us to delve deep and question our own dogmas; the truths in comparison to what we have been taught or been brainwashed into believing via shrewd methods.
    So I read, gather information, probe into backgrounds of the authors, and sort out fact from fiction, (or what I consider fact)
    Unfortunately the education system in Australia is dumbing down students. We have adopted NAPLAN a standard testing, which whilst supposed to test the ability of students is really testing those responsible for implementing the education. In uni trainee teachers are given the propaganda of how much a difference they can make, when the truth is that wont work because of the standardized testing and limitations on syllabus.
    With grandchildren in the system, and talking to them I have labeled their schooling, Gullible’s Travels.
    Your memories of the early desegregation era, another area which the internet has broadened my education with, so similar to Australian political handling of the Indigenous people. So many aspects, from the removal of Robert E Lee statues and flags there, to Indigenous peoples here wanting Captain Cook statues removed, the point being Australia existed long before it’s discovery. Over representation of black people dying in custody compared to whites. Indigenous people being followed by security around supermarkets because of their colour, etc etc.
    Cheers.

    4+
    • SandG, it’s the same process regardless of where it’s used, and it is used for the same reasons. If my memories were alone, and no one else had them, as if I had seen a unicorn, then I wouldn’t reveal them in public. But so many people know what happened at that time it is impossible to hide them. The racists in this country have to wait until the survivors begin to die off, and they can be the next Holocaust Deniers.

      2+
  3. “I’ve had people question my memory. They should. Memory is both fallible and it is malleable. If I was one person telling my story then it ought to be questioned harshly. Or, if there were many facts that were out of kilter about my story, or if my story could not be compared to others like it, yes, then it should be doubted. After all, I was ten years old.”
    Kinda sounds like Christine Ford at 15 years old.

    3+
    • If so, you sound like those who refused to allow a thorough and complete investigation to either back her claims or dispel them. I welcome your investigation in my claims that segregation was real, it was terrible, it dehumanized blacks as a matter of public policy and of law, and that blacks were given substandard education under this system. History is on my side here, and I welcome any claim you might make against what I have written about these times. Put up or shut up.

      6+
      • I know she was telling the truth. How do I know? Because the White House made sure the FBI never questioned him. That’s all the proof I need.

        4+
  4. ” applications are deliberately being filled out incorrectly to generate problems” Why would people who want to vote purposely make mistakes? How is such an endeavor organized? Better yet, WHY would such an endeavor be organized?

    4+
  5. “Ignorant people can be more easily led, made to believe things without those people doing any research on the subject, and they’ll accept less because they know less than people who have knowledge and skill.”

    In all my years in school that was the system. Being merely an ignorant student without the knowledge or resources to verify, we were instructed that Einstein found E=MC squared, Darwin developed the theory of evolution, and Newton got bonked by an apple.
    We had to believe it… or flunk the test.

    I’ve never met a person who actually believes the Earth is flat. Oh some troll a good game, however they haven’t convinced me they actually believe it. But maybe I’m just to ignorant to understand their proof.

    2+
  6. Bruce, I can remember a teacher telling me I was wrong because I said bears in Alaska hibernated. She also told us that the bodies of dinosaurs, intact and complete, rested on the ocean floor because no life existed that far down therefore the bodies wouldn’t break down. Education was rote memorization and a function of policy, rather than learning.

    0
    • Bears in Alaska don’t hibernate and dinosaurs are at the bottom of the ocean or you’ll be sitting in the same class hearing it again next year. That’s the way it works, so it’s easy to understand why people believe fake news.

      1+
  7. “Ignorant people can be more easily led, made to believe things without those people doing any research on the subject, and they’ll accept less because they know less than people who have knowledge and skill.”

    That’s FNC’s business plan.

    3+
  8. Sorry to get into this discussion so late, but,Mike, are you actually saying that there are people who don’t believe segregation happened? Really?
    I have heard so many disgusting conspiracy theories that turn my stomach … but not believing segregation happened is … just …. I don’t know ….. While I believe they must not be functioning in the real world, even that doesn’t count as an excuse. Horrifying.

    0

Comments are closed.