30/03/2020

So many heroes now, actually...

 

Been looking for an excuse to use this one for a while, and no time like the present. And for a number of reasons.

Firstly, for the historians.

Trotsky 

You’ll note the reference to a certain Leon Trotsky.

 

He got an ice pick

That made his ears burn

 

The Russian Revolutionary leader and rival to Soviet dictator Stalin, who had him tracked down and assassinated in Mexico in 1940... by an agent using the proverbial ice pick as his weapon of choice!  

Trotsky 

At the time of the Russian Revolution in 1917-18, when Trotsky alongside Lenin led the new Communist regime that overthrew the Tsar, famously remarked...

 

‘War is locomotive of history’.

 

It’s a phrase that I have, over my years as a history teacher, asked so many students to reflect on. It’s a great stimulus for discussion!

 

In essence, an observation that reflects the role of conflict as a driver catalyst of future change, with a period of upheaval being followed by major changes in many walks of life: politics, social policy, the arts... (and as an aside, if you fancy an interesting, extended read on this try ‘The Deluge’ by Arthur Marwick)

 

In Britain, think the granting of votes to women after the First World War and establishment of the Welfare State after the Second including, of course, the National Health Service in 1948. How appropriate.

 

And how appropriate that we are using a military metaphor now, with these very key workers - as well as others - on the ‘front line’ against the ‘war’ with Covid-19.

 

And what too will be the positive changes that emerge from this struggle, when we emerge from it, which we will, stronger. One for next week’s blog, I think!

 

So, lastly then, a song from the late-1970s bemoaning the then lack of heroes in society and public life.

 

Well, no shortage now. As we applaud all those in the health and wider public service, making such a difference.

 

Applause

 

Thank you for being so many heroes.

 

Kindness

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