Left or right. Conservative or Liberal. Republican or Democrat. If you are an average person operating within the confines of those identities, there is a word we are taught to hate… It begins with an “S” and ends with a WELL WHY DON’T YOU JUST GO LIVE IN CHINA?!
You know. Socialism.
Usually the logic goes. Oh, Socialism is the same as Communism. The two are conjoined together. Unfortunately, Communism is the side of the conjoined twin that died and now other side (Socialism) is forced to drag the dead carcass around with it all times desperately trying to explain to people, “Hey, we have nothing to do with each other.” Which is… mostly true.
Firs of all Socialism is a form of Capitalism. And Communism is a revolutionary movement — by and large. And most Communists in Europe didn’t much care for their Socialist “comrades” — in fact, many outright hated them for the most part. If anything Communism has more to do with Capitalism. Because without Capitalism — The creation of Communism as an idea does not occur.
BUT THAT’S NOT WHAT I AM HERE TO WRITE ABOUT. I AM HERE TO WRITE ABOUT HOW GIRL MEETS WORLD IS SPREADING NATIVIST PROPAGANDA IN HOPES THAT THIS ARTICLE WILL BE PICKED UP BY BUZZFEED.
My wife and I have been watching “Girl Meets World.” And for the most part, I really enjoy the show. Until the episode about where Riley discovers Communism.
Here’s the idea: Riley doesn’t want her friend (Maya) to get in trouble for cheating. So Riley, Maya, and Farkle (Who, mark my words — will become a great actor) — decide to become Communists. That way everyone is treated the same and no one deserves special treatment. Soon they all begin to dress the same. Eventually they all begin to act alike. They no longer are individuals — but a whole. Like the Borg, but set in DeGrassi. At many points, Cory Matthews — their teacher and Riley’s father — laments this change. He often points to the American flag as a joke… suggesting that she is spitting all over it. That she can’t be an American if she is a Communist. Riley is even portrayed as a complete idiot in this episode (even though she is a smart character). She believes John Lenin and Carl Marx to be communists because of Karl Marx and Lenin. She does no actual research. And her attempts a different political ideology than her parents are mocked and derided. Her attempt to be an individual is shamed (A cruel irony in this episode). In the end… Riley and her friends decide not to be communists and join their other friends in “the land of the free” where they can be individuals.
Everyone is happy. No one is treated the same.
Now I’ve read a few books about Communism. I can’t tell you what’s inside them because I am not smart. However, I am smart enough to KNOW that the above… is not the driving force behind it.
Think about it… Just for a minute…
40 years ago, literally half of the world lived under a so-called “Communist” regime. And that many of these regimes — China, Russia, Vietnam — were not the product of some top down tyrant imposing their will on the people… but a group effort. Revolutions comprised of tens of thousands of people who fought and died for their right to be communists. Revolutions which… succeeded (in the same way that GWB defeated Iraq mind you, but still). Do you honestly believe those revolutionaries — those incredibly smart people who gambled with their lives and put together armies to defeat empires — would have done all of that if their ideas were that easily defeated
Going back to me original point. We are taught from a young age to fear Communism. Fear Socialism. That’s why so many of us are against it. When we hear those words it’s the same as saying “Voldermort.” But… What happens when you don’t say the words? What happens when the conversation is over with?
It remains evil. Forever. And you remain ignorant.
Listen… I’m no commie. But I know why. And I consider myself an American Socialist. BUT… When we dismiss communism, we dismiss those revolutionaries who shaped the world (whether you like it or not, they did). We dismiss the question of “Why did they want communism?” We dismiss the question “What was wrong with what they had?” We dismiss the question of “Why didn’t they want to be like us?” And when we dismiss those questions… we forget about the conversation THAT ALREADY TOOK PLACE. We forget about already learned knowledge. And that knowledge just becomes… history. And you know what they say about history…
It’s doomed to pee on itself.