From the University of Michigan in the United States to Tokyo, symposiums and conferences are being held around the world this month to not just commemorate but celebrate Karl Marx’s 200th birthday.
As the last communist superpower, China has been particularly active. It hosted the World Congress on Marxism advocating for Marx’s “relevance” to the 21st century and donated a 14-bronze statue of the philosopher which was unveiled in his hometown of Trier, Germany on May 5.
One thing was missing from celebrations – a full appreciation that more than one hundred million human beings have been murdered in the name of Marxism and communism. This monstrous genocide is the real legacy of the man whose 200th birthday is being observed this month, Karl Marx.
The youngest generations in the west, lacking in basic historical and philosophic knowledge have, at best, vague, yet often positive views of Marx and Marxism.
There have been a number of pieces written on the occasion of his 200th birthday, but most fail to capture the enormity of his impact. If someone had been able to take a geo-political snapshot of the earth in the second half of the 20th century, it would have appeared that most of the globe was Marxist or going that way. The USSR, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, North Korea, Mongolia, Afghanistan, Benin, Congo, Somalia, Benin, Ethiopia, Angola, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Cuba, South Yemen, and all of Eastern Europe. This does not even count those that were mixed Marxist states.
In addition, Marxism and neo-Marxism took over a large swath of western academia, media, and entertainment, and dominates 21st-century ideologies under the broad umbrella of neo-Marxism. All left-wing political ideologies, regardless of the label, must willingly or not bend the knee to Karl Marx’s basic ideas. In fact, one can argue that aside from Abraham, Jesus, and Mohammed, few have come close to the impact of Marx.
How has such a murderous ideology and failed economic system persisted? One popular idea among western “elites,” especially American left of center “elites” is that all actual Marxist experiments went awry, and by deviating from pure Marxist theory, the outcome became polluted. It is the ultimate self-delusion, allowing the advocate to avoid the brutal realities caused by Marxism. In classrooms and dinner parties the declaration always starts out the same, “If only Marxism were allowed to work as Marx wanted…..” This chant is often followed by unholy oaths among the confederates about how they would desire to be in a classless, equalitarian society without the shackles of corporations, government, or God. And depending on the personality of the speaker, it is probably a universal truth that the very people stating this would either be the first victims of the death camps set up by the Marxists or, rise to become Marxist administrators.
The truth, as anti-Marxists understand, is that the “experiments that went awry” were the organic outcome of Marx and his philosophy, not aberrations, especially the fate of genocide. The natural outgrowth of Marxism was always violence, chaos, destruction, and death. That is inevitable whenever an ideology admits a single truth to which all must submit.
Marx attacked every foundation of western civilization that advanced humankind from barbarism. He unleashed forces for evil that are unparalleled.
Marx corrupted human outlook by not only arguing that all of history was a class struggle, but that the struggle was always violent and impossible to avoid. He raised the consciousness of countless generations to believe that the way you should understand class is not based on your behavior, manners, speech, and education, but on your economic condition. This would have been bad enough as this is now what most people on the planet believe how class is measured. But, Marx took these two steps farther. He argued that this economic disparity led to violence and that all human actions were designed to enhance one’s material condition. He reduced human beings from one made in the image of God to an economic unit, and a biological commodity.
Marx’s most insidious and devastating influence was in the area of morality and religion. Marx’s rabid atheism and his virulent attack against the Church ensured “total liberation.” Once humankind was “liberated” by any standard of God’s judgment or God’s laws, he was free to do anything to anyone at any time. According to The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression by Stéphane Courtois,Andrzej Paczkowski, and Karel Bartosek, Marxism led to the deaths of almost 100 million people to genocide in every place that tried it. There has never been a greater number of people killed because of political ideology, including Hitler’s National Socialists, which was heavily indebted to Marx.
This is what relativism reaps. Marx envisioned a communist utopia free from God, class, and need. And if in order to get utopia, people needed to die, it is a small price to pay.
Marxism dictated the struggle of the 20th century would not only be bloody, but ideological. The differences the United States has had with Russia and China were made manifold by the ideological expansion and militaristic drive that both nations embarked on to create Marx’s utopia. It was well that they spent almost as much time attacking each other’s Marxist purity, as they did the United States.
Marxism’s impact on Western Europe and America was more subtle. It was and is the devastation of tradition and manners in pop culture, the faith in relativism, anti-Americanism, and victimization in higher education, and the creation of distrust over property and wealth. Marxism sowed discord among the American family by radicalizing the youth to rebel against parents and convention, though never as bad as awarding medals to children for informing on their parents who could be sent to the death camps as in the USSR. Marx and his neo-Marxist contemporaries have attempted to subvert orco-opt almost every American institution.
Currently, Marxism itself is getting a new lease on life in the same country that donated the statue. China’s dictator, Xi Jinping told a Politburo session in April that they need to “grasp the power of the truth of Marxism.”
We must give the devil his due; Marx was a genius if by that we mean an original thinker whose ideas shook the world. It was a kind of genius from which we have never made a full recovery. Marxism also ensured that multiple generations of anti-communists would hone their skills and polish their swords knowing that the abyss could take real form. Civilized people owe it to the victims of this most sinister philosophy, a philosophy that has caused more pain and suffering than any other, to ensure that Marx’s birthday, does not go unnoticed or untold.