Why do we study history?
The above question reminds me of my 5th-grade social studies teacher who continuously reminded my class of the old saying about the value of history.
My then 5th-grade teacher defined history this way, “History is the study of past event.” During those days, he often immediately after he had defined history as stated above, he would proceed to ensure that we understood the moral of his definition of history with yet another question:
“Why do we study history?”
To the immediate question above, he would proceed, “We study history to avoid repeating past mistakes and ensure that we use lessons of yesterday to make tomorrow’s decisions.?
In addition to the above questions with reference to the value of history, what’s the implication of the current disinformation and outright false statements by people in both public and private spheres and what those may mean for tomorrow’s history and those who would rely on those in decision making? If the history of our present will be based on false statements, how can it inform future decision makers?
If I learned something in 5th grade that remains valuable to me and perhaps for the rest of my history, it’s that history is very important, and should be reported accurately with devoid of deceptions or worst outright false statements for the future generation of decision-makers to benefit from today’s events that will be tomorrow’s history. We must strive to ensure that truth prevails and lies discouraged because the truth helps decision makers while lies sow enough confusion to keep the truth from taking hold and thus will inevitably impede the quality of future decision making.