What have we learned?
I never cease to be amazed by the short memory of the American people. On Nov. 9, 1989, the Berlin Wall fell. It was the beginning of the end for the Iron Curtain and the Soviet Union. Most of us at the time thought it was finally the end for the failed political and economic system of communism. Some 291 million people were living behind the Iron Curtain under brutal one-party communist rule.
For decades these Soviet citizens had been deprived of the same rights that we as Americans take for granted. As a Soviet citizen you could expect no freedom of speech, no freedom to protest, no religious freedom, no freedom of movement, no right to a trial and no economic freedom. No one had to worry about gun rights either. You didn’t have any. The individual “unalienable” rights that are guaranteed to us in the U.S. Constitution did not exist.
The only rights that mattered were the ones determined by the state for the collective good of society. Any form of dissent was met with punishment up to and including death. Under communist rule millions of people were put to death. I remember watching the footage of the wall being dismantled with sledge hammers and the pure joy of those participating. There was reason to celebrate. These people were being set free from that failed communist system.
Here we are, only 25 years have passed since this epic and liberating event, and my fellow citizens, through the ballot box, are on their way to embracing the same collectivist ideas that the people of the Soviet Union were so desperate to escape.
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