Good morning readers. Thanks for coming by for a read this morning.
21st Century human beings, and those of us left over from the 20th tend to get fairly uppidy and smarty pants about all the people we managed to slaughter during the 20th Century. That, and how many we’re likely to off inadvertently here pretty soon [what with the Japanese sewer plants spewing radioactivity into next week’s cat food and whatnot]. We think we were special and innovative with WWI, WWII, the Gulags, Cambodia, Viagra – er, Biafra, the German camps, the Rape of Nanking and other incidentals perpetrated by the Japanese Empire, the pre-WWII French death camps in the Carib for their felons and political problems, Mexican revolutions, Great Cultural Revolution in China.
Mostly fairly piddly stuff compared do what a lot of our ancestors pulled off. About the time we Americans were bragging about how many people got slaughtered at Gettysburg, in China they were actually doing it up right with the Taiping rebellion. Bloodiest civil war in the history of humanity and until WWII took the trophy for killing more people than any war of any kind. 100,000 people slaughtered in a single day in the battle of Nanking.
A government clerk named Hung got hold of a Christian Missionary tract in the 1850s, “Good Words to Admonish the Age“, understood it and decided he was the brother of Jesus. Set about establishing a new heaven on earth with one-hell-of-a-lot fewer people in it, none of whom didn’t believe he was the brother of Jesus. Came damned close to succeeding, too, insofar as the Manchu Empire was concerned.
Then there was Queen Ranavalona I of Madagascar, decided she didn’t like people who didn’t belong to her own tribe, killed off two-three million of them during the 1840s. Survivors dressed up like Europeans, did opera, ate with the right forks and spoons. But honestly didn’t like Europeans, either. Butchered or enslaved any of them they could catch. On second thought, didn’t like anyone else, either. Gave them mostly the same treatment when they could catch them.
Keep in mind there were a lot fewer people available to be offed in those days, and a million was a lot, compared to the 20th Century where it dwindled down and got piddly.
Just because you’ve got a television where you can hear about it and keep count with a computer doesn’t mean you’re any better at it than your great-granddad. Considering the tools he had to work with, he was better at it than you.