Episode #95 of Star Trek: The Next Generation, there was some wisdom of which we should all be aware, not only here online, but in our offline communities as well.
An ambassador who was on a search for enemy terrorists who presumably sabotaged the Enterprise carried on a witch hunt, eventually even bringing Captain Picard to trial. You could compare it to the Salem Witch Trials, the McCarthy trials, and other senseless interrogations and accusations, some of which we've seen in our lifetime. They are bred of fear and prejudice.
It is thought that perhaps the Salem Witch Trials were caused by a fungus called Ergot which grows on rye that causes hallucinations similar to those caused by LSD. Of course, hallucinations alone wouldn't have caused the behavior of those putting people on trial, but rather fear and religious zealotry combined with the hallucinations.
The McCarthy trials can't be blamed on hallucinogens. It was, rather, delusional paranoia, bigotry, intolerance of other cultures, and fear which caused them. God bless brother John Birch. He saw commies in everything. He probably saw commies under his bed, in his closet, and hiding on every street corner. There probably wasn't anyone he didn't suspect of being a Communist. I'm sure left handed people were immediately suspect! Hmmm... That reminds me of a song.
Spartacus Educational states.
The John Birch Society was established by Robert Welch in 1958. The organization was named after Captain John Birch, a member of the China Air Task Force murdered by Chinese communists on 25th August, 1945.
Welch made it clear he wanted a 'secret, monolithic organization' that would "operate under completely authoritative control at all levels". Welch explained that 'democracy is merely a deceptive phrase, a weapon of demagoguery, and a perennial fraud'.
Yes, it's hard losing a loved one to war. Some people get so upset about it that they completely destroy everything their loved one fought to protect. Let's hear what John F. Kennedy had to say on the matter.
The House on Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) conducted such a search and blacklisted people in Hollywood, preventing them from obtaining jobs in their professions.
"In 1947 the House of Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), chaired by J. Parnell Thomas, began an investigation into the Hollywood Motion Picture Industry. The HUAC interviewed 41 people who were working in Hollywood. These people attended voluntarily and became known as "friendly witnesses". During their interviews they named nineteen people who they accused of holding left-wing views."
All of these hate and fear groups did much more to harm the Constitution of the United States and freedom in America than any of the perceived "enemies of the state" ever did. They violated the rights and privacy of honest American citizens and created unnecessary restrictions on freedom in the name of "keeping us safe." In current day, there are many such groups springing up, many of them being funded by greedy interests to unknowingly support their desire for more profit. Imagine what the cameras on the traffic lights and the increased security devices at the airports and government office buildings cost the taxpayers. That's probably some handsome profit. Let's not forget the wars and supporting industries that make a bundle off of the fear of Communists, Socialists, Muslims, and the French... especially those damn French Canadians cost the taxpayer in both money and liberty.
Hate and fear campaigns work against freedom and liberty. Much is said about the military defending our freedoms, but is that what they've been caused to defend in recent years? Our military campaigns have done more to stir hate against America than they have in the cause of "protecting our freedom." Think about that the next time you go to Wal-Mart and see the barrage of cameras out front.
The Witchcraft Trials in Salem: A Commentary
Poisoning - the cause of the Salem Witch Trials, PBS
"Secrets of the Dead II" Witches Curse
McCarthyism, Spartacus Educational
John Birch Society, Spartacus Educational
BLACKLIST, Buhle, Buhle, and Georgakas, ed., ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE
AMERICAN LEFT, (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press,
Copyright © 2011 Cal Jennings