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IPFS News Link • American History

The World Turned Upside-Down

•, by L. Neil Smith

If you want to know the most significant fact of the past two-hundred fifty years, it is this: on October 19th, 1781, following their humiliating defeat at the Battle of Yorktown at the hands of American Revolutionary forces, the surrendering British command ordered their military band to play a song called "The World Turned Upside-Down". (Ironically, given current events, the song was originally a popular protest against Parliament's puritanical order not to celebrate Christmas in the traditional, boisterous, merry, and colorful English way.)

Everything that has happened since, politically, is wrapped up in that telling choice. When Thomas Jefferson and his cohorts wrote and distributed the Declaration of Independence, it was a different world.