“Rob from the rich, give to the poor”… the famous mantra of a famous socialist, right?
Despite what Bernie Sanders and his gang of eat-the-rich lefties or McCarthyist protesters have tried to tell us about Robin Hood’s so-called communist creed, this classic character was actually a champion for individual rights and small government.
For starters, he lived independently in the woods with a band of “merry men,” bucking the traditional way of life for his time. He spent his days subverting and running from the government, not trying to make it bigger. If he was a socialist, he was the most ineffective socialist of all time!
And yes, he may have stolen from the rich… but who exactly were the rich? A little revisit to the original book, The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood, tells us Robin Hood’s enemies were actually government thugs. Namely, the infamous tax collector Sheriff Nottingham and the totalitarian Prince Richard.
These two storybook supervillains were hated in their community for plundering and taxing their citizens into destitution. It’s not exactly the best light to paint big government in… and certainly not an endorsement of it.
Of course, history reinforces the idea that unchecked government power is the ultimate villain.
Time and time again, when nations embrace the siren song of Marxism, wealth becomes concentrated among the powerful, corruption goes unchecked, and people suffer in unthinkable ways. This vicious cycle has cost over 100 million lives in the last 100 years.
The spread of socialism is a tragedy, not a fairytale.
So, how can you make sure your kids don’t get the wrong idea about everyone’s favorite man in tights?
For starters, I discussed all of this in detail in an episode of The Way the World Works — the official Tuttle Twins podcast. If you haven’t checked it out yet, now’s a great time to start. We’re 111 episodes in, and have covered all kinds of stuff — from entrepreneurship, to bullying, to what kids can learn from superheroes.
The goal is to explain important concepts in a way kids can understand, through fun, 15-minute audio nuggets. Here’s a link to our episode archives; each can be streamed through iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, etc. Make sure to subscribe in your preferred podcast app!
We do brief episodes to make them intellectually appetizing for your younger kids, so the whole family can then continue learning and discussing whatever topic we talked about.
Have a hot topic or interesting concept you’d like us to take a crack at? Here’s a link to submit an episode suggestion. We can’t wait to hear what your family is talking about these days.
Talk to you on the airwaves…