The Palin – Wiki Wars: Magicking History Away

Sarah Palin’s comments about Paul Revere and he take on history have been covered pretty thoroughly throughout the media in general. The interesting thing isn’t her saying something eyebrow raising or controversial (that’s pretty much par for the course). It’s her rationalizations after making such a statement.

In Palin’s case, she likes to double down when she’s caught in a mistake. Again, not that surprising, but the way she rationalizes her previous statement about Paul Revere “warning” the British would then make it logical to conclude that Princess Leia’s mission was attempting to warn Darth Vader about rebel resolve on Dantooine.

Two if by Death Star

Alderaan doesn't have weapons, dontcha know? If we did, we wouldn't let you be takin' away our arms n' such, you betcha!

Consistency and a little stubbornness can be admirable, but like Anthony Weiner is finding out, sometimes you gotta know went to fold ’em.

But even funnier than that is when some people go out of their way to change the past to make their cognitive dissonance feel, well, less dissonant. The best way to do that, apparently, is to edit Wikipedia, apparently the only source of history regarding Paul Revere and the Battle of Lexington and Concord that needs revising. I’m uncertain if Palin’s supporters actually believe that changing Wikipedia will somehow vindicate her remarks…or magically change the timeline.

However, we’ve come to a very strange time in human history, when almost anyone can manufacture or distort sources of information that many do take seriously, with almost as little effort as me hitting the publish button here on WordPress. And, as Wikipedia or other Internet sources become more and more relied upon, amusing moments, like the clumsy attempt at updating a Paul Revere wiki entry, could become a far greater problem in maintaining shared, vetted knowledge in an increasingly interconnected world.

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