Americans: Narcissists with absolutely no sense of historical proportion?

I just watched Frank Marshall, the producer of The Bourne Identity, declare that "obviously, one of the most major world events that occurred ever" was... 9/11!

Look, I don't want to diminish the loss of those 3000 lives, but... the millions lost in the Holocaust? The Killing Fields? The Armenian Genocide? The Thirty Years War, when Europe lost perhaps a quarter of its population?

And in terms of world-historical significance? How does 9/11 compare to the migration of humans out of Africa? The development of agticulture? Of writing? Of Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam? The fall of the Roman Empire? The Greek victory in The Persian War? The conqests of Alexander? The discovery of the New World by Europeans? The Reformation?

Well, I could go on for several hours listing thousands of events obviously "more major" than 9/11. And I don't mean to pick on Frank Marshall: I don't know him from Adam. And perhaps he is smart enough to know he is spouting nonsense, but nonsense the viewers believe. Either way, it is illustrative of American narcissism.


  1. America's historical ignorance is, on balance, a good thing.


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