Channeling the Christmas Truce of 1914 for 2021
During World War I, on and around Christmas Day 1914, the sounds of gunfire and exploding ordinance faded along the Western Front. The sounds of violence gave way to the unexpected civility of holiday celebrations. What has come to be known as the Great Christmas Truce – an unofficial ceasefire, soldiers from both sides emerged from their trenches and extended gestures of peace and goodwill.
On Christmas Eve that year, on the fields of battle, German and British troops began singing Christmas carols to each other across the battle lines. Then, at first light on Christmas Day, German soldiers emerged from their trenches and approached the Allied lines, across no-man’s-land, calling out “Merry Christmas” in their enemies’ native tongues.
Setting aside their distrust and animosity, Allied soldiers, seeing the Germans unarmed, climbed out of their trenches and shook hands with the enemy soldiers.
The men, still on opposite sides of the bloody conflict, exchanged presents of cigarettes and plum puddings and sang carols and songs. The Germans lit Christmas trees around their trenches, and soldiers from both sides even played a good-natured game of soccer.
For just a couple of days, the killing and hatred stopped and human beings were enjoined in kindness.
Why This Is Important
To say that we are divided is an understatement. We, the American people, are experiencing a division that hasn’t existed since the US Civil War. Instead of that division being along geographic lines, today’s division is a politically manufactured ideological divide, but a potent and debilitated divide nevertheless.
Politically opportunistic social engineers, masquerading as community organizers, social justice activists, and transformative politicians, have succeeded in Balkanizing the American people and ginning up extreme levels of animosity between the factions. It has culminated in a palpable hatred among the American people toward one another.
From overt acts of lawlessness at the expense of our fellow Americans to spikes in violent crime across the nation that indiscriminately and unnecessarily take innocent life, the idea of e pluribus unum (out of many one) has been turned on its head through division.
The dividers relentlessly explain to us how we are victims of each other’s aggressions, systemic hate, and intolerance, even as they manufacture issues to magnify and amplify small differences into societal fissures that keep us divided. For them, it is the pathway to power and control, even if that pathway arrives at a country so broken it can no longer be governed as a cohesive nation.
The question we must ask ourselves centers on the same thought that soldiers from both sides in the Great Christmas Truce of 1914. Are we so different?
In the United States today, the overwhelming majority of people quest for the same things: a nice home, a safe neighborhood, a good job, leaving our children better off than we had it, peace, and prosperity, among many other things. So what are we at each others’ throats?
The answer circles back to the dividers. In order for them to achieve their ends, they need us to focus on the scant few things we have in difference than all of the things we have in common. The dividers goad us to focus on our differences and then emotionally weaponize those differences, thereby holding sway over society as they profiteer from the tools of the division they sow.
Are there bad actors among us? Sadly, yes. Many of these bad actors have been cultivated through the instillment of prejudicial narcissism and a false elevation of “self-esteem.” This cultivation is applied in our educational institutions and reinforced in the mainstream media, exploited by the globalist, activist, and political classes for power and personal gain; the cultivated bad actors employed as useful idiots by the dividers.
Still others in the bad actor category are simply the super-minority criminal class that has existed in every culture throughout history.
But it is an undeniable fact that the overwhelming majority of us simply want to enjoy uncomplicated, fruitful, and prosperous lives, sharing more in common with each other than the dividers would have us recognize.
Just like the soldiers in World War I, perhaps this Christmas we can be courageous enough to trust and reach out from our Balkanized trenches to see the humanity in those the dividers keep telling us we must hate. Maybe then the dividers will be exposed for the damage they have and continue to cause.
To all, Merry Christmas, peace on Earth, goodwill toward all.