The Latest

THE LATEST

THE LATEST THINKING

THE LATEST THINKING

The opinions of THE LATEST’s guest contributors are their own.

Understanding Key Similarities Between America and the Late Roman Republic

Robert Dimuro

Posted on August 11, 2018 20:45

1 user

What is the fate of America? Only history can tell us if America's current path is sustainable.

A key question that faces us in the early 21st century is: What is the fate of America? Although America was founded on the principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, the American people have never fully agreed upon a vision for the future. Should America be comprised of slave states or free states? Should America practice isolationism or imperialism? Should America embrace nationalism or globalism? These forks in the road represent critical turning points in American history that have molded America into what it is today.

In my estimation, however, we may be headed towards an historical climax, greater than that of the Civil War. The entire fabric of our government is at risk of falling apart. We all (hopefully) learned in history class that America is a republic. Originally, this system was created to represent the people more effectively; however, this is no longer the case.

The historical parallel to our current situation is the government of the late Roman Republic. Like the founding of America, the Roman Republic was founded when the senate and people revolted against the monarchy. Hatred towards the king and the desire to be free sparked the revolution. Trends beginning late in the 2nd century BC foresaw the republic’s eventual collapse. The same trends may be happening in America today.

The Republic was doomed to fail following the vast territorial and economic expansion of the Roman State that led the Romans to dominate the Mediterranean world. More land meant more people to govern, policies to pursue and wars to fight. It also meant that incredible amounts of wealth were beginning to flow into the city, which went directly into the pockets of senators and wealthy patricians. These classes scratched each other’s backs and protected their own interests while the majority of the people suffered.

In America, these power brokers are politicians, bureaucrats and corporations. Wealth and status have become more important than actual principles and equal representation. As a result, the political and economic power of the individual has been greatly diminished, as it had been in Rome.

Examples of this in America are evident in our trade and immigration policies. American labor is being rejected for cheaper foreign labor. Companies either leave the United States or import labor from foreign countries. This happens at the expense of the American working class that has no say in the matter, as they lack the cash to influence our politicians. Not surprisingly, a similar situation arose in Rome, when wealthy landowners decided to acquire slaves to bring their labor expenses to zero. At that point, there was little use for ordinary Roman citizens of the plebeian class and certainly no representation for them in the senate.

History should teach us a lesson here. As the Roman Republic fell to the dictatorship of Julius Caesar in 44 BC, America is also likely to descend into dictatorship if the legitimacy of the republic -- the rule of the people -- fails to be restored. 

Robert Dimuro

Posted on August 11, 2018 20:45

Comments

comments powered by Disqus

by StormbringerGrey Related Item: 1846: The Race for the Midwest Would you take $35?

THE LATEST THINKING

Video Site Tour

The Latest
The Latest

Subscribe to THE LATEST Newsletter.

The Latest
The Latest

Share this TLT through...

The Latest