Nellie McClung caused World War Two. Yes, the McClung after whom Victoria’s Cedar Hill library is reverently named. Lest we forget.
Maybe that’s not obvious. Let me back up, and talk first about nature, history and proof.
People often use nature to prove points. Whatever their points are. Is cut-throat competition “natural”? Show fish eating each other. However, interspecies cooperation is essential for some trees and fungi. “Natural” sexuality? Pick your species to demonstrate virtually anything.
I recently read someone seriously arguing Victoria’s practice of dumping sewage directly into the ocean is laudable because it’s natural; don’t whales use oceans as toilets? Gee, why not use seagulls as the example, then? If they do it, shouldn’t all Victorians defecate on other people’s rooftops?
Such infantile arguments are equally common when we use history to prove points. Like nature, human cultural history is vast and diverse, and doesn’t often reasonably reduce to single, definitive exemplars. Nevertheless, one feeble memory of one event is all some people need to establish “the” definitive proof of something. Meanwhile, more complex truths are lost.
We’ll find no better example of selective remembering than, ironically, on “Remembrance” Day.