A GOOD ATTACK BEATS DEFENSE
Why be someone accused when you can be an accuser? Better to point the finger at others than being fingered yourself. This thought came to me because I recently felt accused and had a whiff of guilt while attending an art museum. The fine exhibition of indigenous American art and culture demonstrated the skill of the totem poles carvers, and bead workers. But so too was a suggestion of white man’s guilt: European invaders obliterating the nature-loving, pastoral culture of “The Original Americans”. And as a result, we brought an end to their indigenous, sustainable civilization.
AMERICA BEFORE 1492
In the museum’s artistic context, the presentation was honest and well displayed, and I felt terrible we canceled an early nation: But for the fact, that story lacked historical context. Pre 1492, the indigenous American world wasn’t all harmonious brotherhood. Successive tribes usurped the earlier tribes until the Europeans arrived.
The same is true with today’s Homo sapiens in Europe. Modern-day French, Italians, and Germans, as they sip their Chablis, should also be wracked with guilt for what they did to the beloved Neanderthals. Written history is skimpy for those days, but the pristine “First Nation Europeans” arrived about 120,000 years ago. They, too, had their own sustainable and enduring culture. Then 40,000 years ago, the Homo Sapiens (CUE: you can hiss at this point) replaced them. It might have been a sociable get-together where Neanderthals married the Sapiens and lived happily ever after: Or not. By whatever means, the “First Nation Europeans” are gone now, and the rapacious, polluting, Homo Sapiens prevailed.
The story is no different for the “First Nation Japanese”. The early Jomon settlers arrived on the islands centuries before modern-day Yayoi Japanese arrived. The new hegemons felt no guilt as they expropriated the Jomon, Ainu, and other indigenous cultures.
THE LOCALS WANT IT ALL FOR THEMSELVES
New waves of populations have always usurped the land from the indigenous people. On the Central Asian step, every square mile was expropriated by one tribal warlord or another. The trend reached a climax in modern-day Turkey. It seems every tribe on earth occupied Anatolia at one time. What part of the earth is not populated by cultural usurpers and territorial expropriators today?
If this is the case, how can some be singled out for degradation and humiliating guilt while the sanctimonious continue finger-pointing with impunity?
SO WHAT CAN WE LEARN?
Conclusion One: When you come upon a finger pointer, get them before they get you.
Conclusion Two: When E.T. and space aliens do arrive, don’t give them an inch