History is happening all around us. We are living it now, even though it won’t be called “history,” per se, for several years. Every generation lives the history that will populate books at a later time. Every moment has its famous personages and a plethora of people who are just like you and me: we are the ordinary people living through extraordinary times. It’s just that those of us in 2020 must wait for the full scope of our history to be codified.
My books are populated with individuals who don’t make history, but who live it. I write about average men/women during famous times of disruption and turmoil that mark historical events. That perspective was the impetus for Embracing the Elephant and every other volume I write.
I believe I have mentioned many times in this blog that I think human beings have changed little in the millennia since we began to walk upright. Our technology has advanced in leaps and bounds, but too many of us remain tribal and fearful and judgmental, quick to bully, and oh-so-quick to wage war, like our ancestors. Astonishing historical figures have appeared throughout the centuries to teach us new ways to approach life and death and government and any number of other life experiences, but our headlines continue to scream of false prophets and hypocrites and dictators and liars rising to power and manipulating the populace in much the same way as was done thousands of years ago.
However, I think ordinary people are the vehicles of lasting change. Great leaders and teachers plant the seeds, but people like you and me are the ones to tend and harvest the ideas intended to make the world a better place.
Because “history” is happening in our streets today, “We the People” have yet another opportunity to effect lasting change, to make a better future for ourselves and our progeny. Today we are being given yet another chance to ensure that the history we live now will be better than what came before. The only question is, will we seize that opportunity?
What history do you want to make? What history do you want to live? What will be written about us when it comes time to set down our history? “Who lives, who dies, who tells our story.”* How will history remember the people of 2020?
*Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton