Paul Harvey, the renowned news commentator and trailblazing figure in talk-radio whose distinct delivery established him as one of the most recognizable voices in the United States, reached an impressive audience of over 24 million listeners during the zenith of his career.
It’s astonishing to reflect that his prophetic words from over five decades ago have materialized into today’s reality, despite their seemingly far-reaching implications. This sentiment struck me profoundly as I encountered his speech, which was transmitted by the legendary ABC Radio commentator Paul Harvey on April 3, 1965.
He commences his “prophecy” by postulating: “If I were the Devil…” and then proceeds to deliberate on matters that have indeed become our contemporary challenges. This speech holds relevance that extends beyond its initial context. Everyone should take heed of its message. Regrettably, it must be acknowledged that Paul Harvey’s foresight was strikingly accurate 54 years ago.
“If I Were the Devil, If I held dominion over darkness, my ambition would encompass the entire globe. I would secure a substantial portion of its landmass and the majority of its populace. Yet, my aspirations would not be fulfilled until I had acquired the most valuable prize, akin to plucking the ripest apple from the tree.
I would initiate my strategy through a campaign of subtle suggestions. With the cunning of a serpent, I would whisper to individuals, as I once whispered to Eve, ‘Indulge your every desire.’
To the youth, I would insinuate that ‘The Bible is a mere fabrication.’ I would manipulate them into believing that ‘humankind fabricated the notion of God,’ reversing the true origin. I would sow the belief that ‘what is morally wrong is actually virtuous, while that which is virtuous is passé.’
To the newlyweds, I would impart that work is demeaning, and that social gatherings hold inherent value. I would caution them against embracing ‘extreme’ viewpoints in terms of religion, nationalism, or ethical conduct.
As for the elderly, I would teach them a new form of supplication — to echo after me — ‘Our authority resides in the halls of Washington.’
Once this foundation is established, I would systematically organize my influence. I would instruct writers to embellish sensational literature, rendering all else mundane and uninteresting. I would coerce the media into producing increasingly explicit content, creating a reciprocal influence with the film industry.
I would insinuate myself into labor unions, advocating idleness over diligence. Idle hands, as history demonstrates, often serve my purpose.
I would disseminate narcotics to those susceptible, while selling alcohol to the esteemed. The rest of the populace I would placate with sedatives.
Were I to be vested with the power of darkness, I would encourage educational institutions to cultivate young intellects, yet disregard the importance of emotional discipline, thereby permitting emotions to surge uncontrollably.
I would appoint an atheist to champion my cause within the highest courts, and sway preachers to endorse my ideology with the assertion, ‘She speaks the truth.’
Lured by praise and promises of authority, I would manipulate the judicial system to oppose God and endorse explicit content.
This would enable me to expel God initially from courtrooms, then from schools, and ultimately from legislative chambers.
In places of worship, I would supplant spirituality with psychology, and venerate science in place of faith.
Should I be the embodiment of malevolence, I would reshape Easter’s symbol into an egg and Christmas’ symbol into a bottle.
Were I to be the Devil, I would confiscate from the prosperous to appease the wanting, eradicating the ambitions of the driven. Subsequently, my regime would impose a work-centric existence upon all, enforced by a police state.
Families would be torn asunder, with children coerced into uniforms, women relegated to coal mines, and dissenters subjected to forced labor.
If I were the embodiment of darkness, I would persist in my endeavors, propelling the world toward damnation with unwavering determination.”
I, too, have fond memories of listening to Paul Harvey alongside my mother in the 1970s. His words resonate with an accuracy that transcends time. The parallels between his insights from 54 years ago and today’s reality are striking and thought-provoking.
Paul Harvey’s wisdom remains awe-inspiring, and his foresight remains an invaluable source of reflection. If you concur, consider sharing this perspective.