Late 1940s news clips, shown between features at the movies, were usually a time to move around.
Once, however, a hushed audience stared intently at the screen.
I asked my mother, “What is it?”
She answered so quietly that I asked again.
Again she whispered, “It’s people.”
I tried again, confused, “But what are those piles?”
She repeated, more clearly, “Lonnie, it’s people.”
Cartoons then came on again, my preschool mind was captured and my sweet mother was spared more questions.
The film clips had been ordered by General Eisenhower when the horror of Auschwitz was discovered.
He insisted that pictures were the only way the world would believe what humans had done to other humans during World War II.
The reality of that scene took years for me to comprehend.
By that time, Stalin had already murdered millions of his own countrymen and Chairman Mao was in the process of doing the same to the Chinese people.
The twentieth century is stained with totalitarian regimes, where cultures were canceled, dictators took power, disagreement was silenced and punished, truth was not tolerated and people lost any chance of life or liberty.
John F. Kennedy laid responsibility before the press to report the unvarnished truth to this nation’s citizens, who are uniquely responsible for ruling and preserving our liberties.
Yet the most well-formed generation in history continues to be insulted with slanted, twisted, opinionated, stained, varnished and, sometimes, omitted truth,
God help us.