The Smoke Signal

Why is history so significant to the world?

Abigail Pendleton

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¨Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.¨

This is a quote from George Santayana, whose philosophy covered vast historical perspectives.  Even years after his death in 1952, it is still a relevant saying.

Everyone has probably heard this one time or another, but we probably don’t take it into account, or really care to understand why this is so important.  Students just tend to go about their day, getting through the class at whatever cost.

In California, high school students must take three years of social science, some of those subjects being U.S. History, World History, and Government.

Every high school student has to take history.  That being said, the subject has to have importance.  That opinion may differ whether you ask a historian or a student, but it is important to learn about.

¨History is important for us to learn so we can see the mistakes America has made and that we don´t make them again,” said junior Dallas Waters.

Other students also felt that history has importance.

¨History is important because it helps us learn how America was shaped to become what it is today.  For me, it makes me see how people made decisions in the past,” said junior Sophia Deponte.

It’s important to have awareness and know what has happened in the past and how it has shaped our country and even our world today.  

We have documents like the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, the foundation of which the colonists started the nation that is the United States of America.  Our ancestors have fought in many wars, including the Revolutionary War, Civil War, War of 1812, two world wars, etc.

Americans have traveled on the Oregon Trail, moving west.  They’ve even looked for gold in California in the mid 1840s.  

Americans have also fought against Jim Crow Laws and rallied behind Martin Luther King, Jr. for equal rights.

Those are just some major events in America alone.  There’s so much more history and stories throughout the world, from Ancient Egypt to the Russian Revolution.

Everything that has happened in the world from the moment it came into existence to this date has had an impact.

Now imagine that everything that has happened in the world before the day you were born was erased from everyone’s memory.  Every war fought, every conflict faced. It’s all forgotten.

The world would be in a lot more chaos.  There would be discrimination and bloodshed because if no one remembers the mistakes that man has made in the past, how are they supposed to prevent that from happening again?  It would take centuries to learn that all back over again.

If we pay attention in our history classes, then we will have the knowledge we need to better our country and our world so that we don’t make the same mistakes as the people before us.

Without history, the world is doomed for repeated failure.

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Why is history so significant to the world?