Monday, January 18, 2016
Creating American Icons
Having lived through the Civil Rights movement and the development of PC's, I see some similarities. In both cases there were many people involved, important people who played big parts in the developments. In both cases there was lots of conflict, false starts, and coulda-beens. In both cases the passage of time has led to creation of a handful of icons: Martin Luther King reigns as the icon of civil rights, in the form of a simplified plaster saint of non-violence and Bill Gates reigns as the icon of personal computers, becoming a sanctified elder statesman of altruism. I don't mean to denigrate either man, just to suggest that similar processes are at work. We need a simple narrative, so the number of heroes is ideally one, and we don't like humanity, so the number of vices acceptable is maybe one as well, but zero is better.