Following the death of North Korea’s beloved leader, Kim Jung-il, age 69, and subsequent 10 day national mourning period, the communist nation may breathe a sigh of relief as Kim Jung-un has ascended to power.
Born beneath a double rainbow, atop North Korea’s highest mountain, the shoes of Kim Jung-il will not be easy ones to fill. Upon his death, the North Korean state news reported that a mysterious glow appeared above the mountain which he was born, while a severe snowstorm swept through the region followed by ice cracking at a frozen lake.
There have been concerns originating from the state department over a potential power vacuum left by Kim Jung-il, as his 28-year-old son, Kim Jung-un, is young and inexperienced. Aside from the fact that Kim Jung-un received his primary education in Switzerland, little is known about the “the Great Successor.”
There is no doubt similar myths will be fabricated about Kim Jung-un, and while it’s easy to laugh at the deification of these men--if we carefully reflect--we will find deities of our own in this country, which should prove to be a bigger concern to us, rather than the leader of a tiny nation, 5,000 miles away.
Consider Ronald Reagan, who is purported to have defeated the Soviet Union. He is certainly worshiped by a vast proportion of the population of Americans who consider themselves “conservative.” Any person running for election as a Republican must pay some modicum of respect to this man, whose “spirit seems to stride the country, watching us like a warm and friendly ghost,” this according to another deity, Barrack Obama.
Like Kim Jung-il, whose people starved by the millions and suffered untold cruelties under his rule, the facts differ substantially from the myths.
Under Reagan, the United States went from being the world’s leading creditor to the world’s leading debtor. The fiscal conservative ensured the nation had record setting deficits, while destabilizing Central America to keep it safe from communism by overriding democratic elections and enthusiastically supporting right wing fascists, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands—all this from the “warm and friendly ghost.”
The inauguration of President Obama set attendance records with the audience standing in awe of their deity, listening intently to his promises of “hope and change,” words which cannot be vaguer, and in retrospect, more vapid. Three years into his the presidency the noble peace laureate has exercised despotic power to dispatch American forces to Libya, essentially starting a new war, amongst the two he promised to end, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The president who ran on a peace platform has done much to advance the CIA and Pentagon’s new murderous tactics of targeted drone assassinations—doesn’t matter if you are a citizen and there is no need for a trial. It is a small wonder and a testament to their piety that those “liberals” who worship him do not scream “bloody murder” as they would if a Republican was in office.
American comedians and commentators from across the political spectrum joked about the North Koreans crying in the middle of the streets amid the mass hysteria following their dear leader’s death, but the truth is these people don’t know any better-- any more than the Reganites and Obamites do. They are devoted to the man, not the cause, because the men are deities, who demand faith, not conscious reasoning.
Arbitrary idolatry and deification of political leaders should be the bigger threat to this nation rather than some crackpot’s illusive son taking power 5,000 miles away.