Leave them where they are.
All the old stuff that’s now being labeled “racist,” “insensitive,” “hate speech,” etc. should be left as-is, and where-is, for all to see.
Dr. Seuss Enterprises recently canceled six of their own Dr. Seuss books. The reason? Racist imagery. Quoting the company that preserves Suess’ legacy, “These books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong.”
Dr. Seuss is just the latest in a long line of cancelations of history.
And it’s the absolute wrong approach.
The baseball Hall Of Fame has repeatedly denied entry to players who have been accused of — or even admitted to — steroid use. This has kept legends like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, two players who would be in the Hall Of Fame even if you removed their performance-enhanced seasons, out of the Hall for years.
The baseball Hall Of Fame, and society in general, have forgotten the purpose of history.
The Hall Of Fame, in any sport, is a museum covering the history of the game. A person who knows nothing about baseball, football, or swimming should be able to spend a day at the Hall Of Fame and, by the end of that day, have a firm grasp of the history of the game.
The HOF is not about showing the stories we like and the people we approve of. It’s about showing everything — the good, bad and ugly — to give people a complete history of what has taken place. You can’t talk about the history of Major League Baseball without talking about the steroid / “juiced ball” era, all the home runs that got hit, and the players who were outed for cheating.
The history of baseball is not complete without that part of the story. Thus, the main characters of this scene should be in the Hall Of Fame. It gives me a fuller picture of baseball’s history.
Oppress: subject to harsh and authoritarian treatment. Click To Tweet
The purpose of history is to show people “how it was.” Cleansing that stuff away via banned books, renamed buildings, and removed statues serves no one, removes context, and does a disservice to anyone seeking to learn about the past.
No one has ever been oppressed by a statue, book, or library.
All the whitewashing and cancellation appears to be aimed at shaping history to only show approved-of and morally “right” people, places, and events. At that point, it’s no longer history. It’s “His Story.”
His Story used to be code for “The White Man.” Now it means the morally superior folks who have appointed themselves as spokespeople for everyone’s emotions.
In the thought leadership world, the idea is, “you mess is your message.” The shit you’ve been through and setbacks you’ve faced are the very things that allow others to connect with you. Self-help books, motivational speeches, and mindset-based podcasts all follow this simple formula.
The fact that I played pro basketball is impressive. The fact that I got cut, kicked off teams, rejected, and overlooked before I made it pro is what you connect with.
Most of my readers have never played a professional sport. 100% of you have been rejected, overlooked, or counted out at some point.
THAT’S what you buy into.
The rejections are my history. If I only told you the good stuff about me — playing pro, the books, my success — you wouldn’t relate to me. Because no one’s history is squeaky clean like that.
The SHIT is the STORY.
Certain things that were acceptable “back in the day” are not acceptable now. We know this. But that doesn’t mean they didn’t happen. It doesn’t mean we should act like they didn’t happen. And it doesn’t mean we should remove them from existence to “protect” others.
There’s an unintended side effect of removing and erasing history that no one talks about. It’s that those who follow after us will have a false sense of what history was.
As we’re removing everything that’s not approved of to only show the “good” stuff, future generations will expect that only “good” stuff happens. As we can erase things we don’t like on the back end so as not to have to deal with them at all, our descendants will expect that the only things they’ll engage with are things they agree with — and anyone who violates this expectation can be canceled.
Anyone over the age of 18 knows that this is not how life works.
We need a full picture of history.
“We” is used here not just for those who disagree with the canceled people, banned books, and renamed buildings.
Everyone needs the full history, so we all can know how things went and why they went that way.
We need it so we’re not living in a fantasy world where we only talk about and recognize the parts we agree with or the parts we deem morally acceptable.
We need it because, without the shit, there’s no story.
Speaking of story, take my Bulletproof Mindset 2.0 course so you can alter your story from this point forward — which means it’s all the more sweet because of where you came from.
Get started here: http://WorkOnMyGame.com/Bulletproof