I have to confess–my first thoughtful reading touching the French Revolution, the time when I really understood the horror of that period in French history, was when I taught my gifted reading students, A Tale of Two Citiesby Charles Dickens. Like Anne Frank in the 1959 movie script, I thought it the saddest book I’ve ever read. I’ve never forgotten that first reading and today I still consider it one of Dickens’ best novels. Now, many years later, I came into possession of Ann Coulter’s Demonic: How the Liberal Mob is Endangering America. Two chapters in that fine read deal specifically with the French Revolution, and one chapter contrasts our own American Revolution with the French.
Coulter’s two chapters dealing with the French Revolution were so powerful and affected me so deeply that I had to read them twice. They were disturbing, not only because of the vivid horror of the French Revolution she portrays so well, but also because the comparison to our own country frightened me by showing the abuses I knew could easily occur today. The seed of the mindset that created the French Revolution has been scattered throughout our own society. Here’s a few observations I drew from the chapters:
1. There was no logic to the chronology of the French Revolution. Coulter argues this is because it was a mob event, and mobs do not operate by logic. Mobs are irrational.
2. The mobs of the French Revolution were fueled by rumors and gossip.
3. The French Revolution mobs were anti-secular. Churches and spiritual leaders were attacked. The State became the official religion.
4. Lawful authorities (law enforcement of the French society) were targeted. The mob had no fear of punishment, so the mobs ran wild.
5. Beautiful and priceless monuments, statues, and art were destroyed because they offended those in the mobs.
6. Even the leaders of this revolution were not safe as other leaders and the mobs turned on them. Mobs can love someone one minute and hate the person the next.
7. Anyone who questioned the excesses and course of events was deemed unpatriotic and paid the price.
8. The French Revolution was nothing like ours. It set the stage for the Bolshevik Revolution, Ma’s Cultural Revolution, Pol Pot’s slaughter, and America’s mindless mobs vandalizing and attacking the innocent.
If you are interested in the French Revolution, in understanding why there’s so many riots and mob occurrences now troubling our land and other nations, I encourage you to obtain Coulter’s Demonic. You will also understand much more about the mob mentality of the troublemakers in our society today.