by Steve Casey
The academic study of “civilization” is predominately a study of wars. The approximately 6000 years of recorded human history is dominated by nations becoming empires by conquering other nations, taking their wealth and either enslaving their people or demanding high taxes and tributes from them.
The primary slavery in world history had nothing to do with race. It was based on who conquered whom. In fact our word “slave” comes from the word “slav.” The Slavic people, who inhabited a large part of Eastern Europe, were taken as slaves by the Muslims of Spain during the ninth century AD.
The most prominent form of government throughout history has been monarchy where a king or queen ruled over everyone else. In many cases, these rulers were worshipped or considered to be endowed with “divine rights.” Some monarchies evolved into socialism which claimed to be a sharing of wealth and a creation of equality. In most cases, this system developed into an elite group replacing or working with the monarch. The result has almost always been a small group of rich and powerful ruling over a large group of poor.
These methods of conquer, enslave and control continued to dominate history until the development of capitalism. Though there were brief moments of governmental systems similar to capitalism, it was not until the thirteen American colonies rebelled against the monarchy of England that true capitalism was born.
Though moving civilization in a good direction, this new system of individual rights did not immediately shake off all the problems of 6000 years of history. Seven of the thirteen colonies immediately outlawed slavery. But, it took over 80 years to completely eradicate legalized slavery. Conquering and possessing still existed as the nation moved west. But, this too ended and the new system became the defender of nations rather than the conqueror of nations.
As this new system based on individual worth and freedom developed, it evolved into the America we know today. Capitalism’s basic economic principle is the right of the individual to earn and keep that which he has earned. The greatest defense of capitalism can be seen in visiting nations where monarchy and socialism are still being practiced and comparing the living conditions with those in capitalistic nations. Sure there are some who would like to leave America and live elsewhere. But, most of the rest of the world would love to trade places with us.
This being said, why do we now have so many people who wish to destroy the system that has given its people the highest living standard in world history? The alternatives are not very promising.
© Copyright 2015 Tanna K, All rights Reserved. Written For: Tinytown Unleashed