Pope Gregory is said to have remarked, upon seeing some slaves from England in the marketplace of Rome in the year 603 AD, that, “They are not Angles, but angels” because of their “fair complexion, with pleasing countenances, and very beautiful hair.”
Will Durant, in The Story of Civilization, remarked that this story was too pretty to be true. (However, my last name literally means "Angles," and if you could see my daughters, you would agree that the pope was right...)
But more seriously, there are numerous historical anecdotes that many scholars doubt to be true; if these stories place the person depicted in a negative light, and seem particularly hard to believe, some historians will argue that these tales must have been invented by their political enemies.
However, if you consider recent events, some of those legends no longer seem so ridiculous...
Let's look at a particularly famous tale: Emperor Nero is said to have fiddled while Rome burned. Historians debate whether or not he did this, or the significance of those performances even if they did take place.
True or not, the story reflects the perception that Nero was indifferent to suffering Romans. The obvious parallels -- and we know these stories are true -- would be Hilary Clinton's famous "What difference does it make?" remark about Benghazi, and Barack Obama's description of the Paris terror attacks as a “setback." Future historians won't be able to claim that "evil" Republicans invented those two shameless displays of indifference.
Nero is also said to have lamented just before committing suicide: “Dead! And so great an artist!” History remembers Nero as being more interested in theatre and the arts than in being Emperor; he even forced his citizens to watch him perform. My Classical Roman History professor used to say that having an actor as Roman emperor would be like having a porn star as the President of the United States today.
Even in the age of the Kardashians, that notion sounds absurd, but is it really as bizarre as what we're witnesses today? Look at the Lefties in Europe who are committing mass cultural suicide, by importing people who do not share their values, and who are more willing to impose their own.
These Europeans are doing this to show how "caring," they are -- and anyone that disagrees with them is a racist. Like Nero, they're performing, and forcing their fellow citizens to watch. At least when Nero stabbed himself he did not bring down the entire Roman Empire with his thrust.
King Xerxes is said to have ordered his troops to whip the sea and throw fetters into the water to punish the god that resided there, after a storm on the sea wiped out a bridge he had built on the Hellespont. This pointless gesture sounds like the actions of a power crazed dictator. Now look at Obama, who says that the best way to "rebuke" ISIS is for world leaders to gather in Paris to talk about the weather. Prince Charles, meanwhile, says that global warming caused the conflict in Syria.
But if Tim Ball was correct in his interview with Ezra recently, these leaders will come out of the conference with no real accomplishments, but loudly proclaiming their victory over the true enemy: carbon dioxide.
In a way Xerxes was less pathetic than Obama and the Left, because at least he was trying to show that he was more powerful than the gods and could bend them to his will. The Left's pointless activity in Paris is a display of weakness, not strength.
Both the Greek and Roman historians recorded that the Carthaginians practiced infant sacrifice to appease their god Baal Hammon, but some historians refuse to believe it. The obvious modern parallel here is abortion in the name of “gender equality." Another appalling example are the 1400 girls in Rotherham who were systemic victims of Muslim rape gangs. The authorities knew about this but didn't act because the victims were poor and white, and the perpetrators were “Asian” men. Now it is estimated that there may be up to a million victims in the whole of the UK. They were all considered expendable, sacrificed in the name of multiculturalism. What will future historians think? Will they be able to believe that such a thing really happened?
My favourite story is of Emperor Honorius, who after learning of the first sack of Rome in 410 AD, was worried about the safety of his prize rooster, named Roma. Historians, including the great Edward Gibbon, doubt this story is true. Now look at Obama's refusal to bomb ISIS oil wells because he didn't want to cause environmental damage. Little girls are being brutalized and Christians are being slaughtered, but Obama is too busy “saving the planet” to save anyone on it.
Historians may look back on these incidents and conclude then, as we do now about the past, that they simply cannot be true and were contrived by political opponents.
And you yourself would think that they had to have been made up, which is part of the problem for conservatives: we tell people exactly what the Left is doing or enabling, and it is so horrible or ridiculous that people cannot believe it is true. And yet it is.
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