"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Thursday, February 3, 2022

From Redskins To Commanders–The Dumbing Down Of The Heroic Indian Past And The Capitulation To Ignorant Wokism

Wokism has taken another toll – the removal of the name ‘Redskins’ from the Washington football team – a disregard for American history, the legacy of the defense of indigenous lands by American Indians, and a sorry retreat into the  world of identity politics.

The origin of the word ‘redskins’ came from native Americans themselves, as David Skinner of Slate (12.13) recounts:

In 2005, the Indian language scholar Ives Goddard of the Smithsonian Institution published a remarkable and consequential study of redskin's early history. His findings shifted the dates for the word's first appearance in print by more than a century and shed an awkward light on the contemporary debate. Goddard found, in summary, that "the actual origin of the word is entirely benign."

Redskin, he learned, had not emerged first in English or any European language. The English term, in fact, derived from Native American phrases involving the color red in combination with terms for flesh, skin, and man. These phrases were part of a racial vocabulary that Indians often used to designate themselves in opposition to others whom they (like the Europeans) called black, white, and so on.

The first unchallenged use of the word “redskin” occurs when a British lieutenant colonel translates a letter from an Indian chief promising safe passage if the officer visited his tribe in the Upper Mississippi Valley.

“I shall be pleased to have you come to speak to me yourself if you pity our women and our children; and, if any redskins do you harm, I shall be able to look out for you even at the peril of my life,” Chief Mosquito said in his letter, according to a 2005 study by Ives Goddard, the Smithsonian’s senior linguist emeritus.

In August, 1812, at a Washington reception for several Native Americans, President James Madison refers to Indians as “red people” or “my red children,” prompting Little Osage Chief Sans Oreilles (No Ears) to voice his support for the administration: “I know the manners of the whites and the red skins.” Then, Sioux Chief French Crow also pledged loyalty: “I am a red-skin, but what I say is the truth, and notwithstanding I came a long way I am content, but wish to return from here.”

On July 20, 1815, after tangling with famed explorer-turned-Missouri Territory Gov. William Clark, Meskwaki Chief Black Thunder gives a speech that was printed in the Western Journal in St. Louis. “I turn to all,” the chief is reported as saying, “red skins and white skins, and challenge an accusation against me.”

The use of ‘redskin’, then, should not be offensive; and combined with the heroic image of the team – a noble Indian – there should never have been any furor in the first place.

And yet there was.  The owner of the team was badgered, hammered, and threatened – change this racist, antediluvian name or else! Snyder’s fan base disagreed.  The name itself never had had racist connotations.   In the eyes of most fans and most Americans, ‘Redskins’ was  no different than ‘Chiefs’ or ‘Indians’, the symbol of valor, courage, defiance, and allegiance to cultural values.

The Washington football team ownership abjectly capitulated to the anti-historical demands of the radical cancel-culture Left.  By changing the name to the innocuous, value-neutral ‘Commanders’, the ownership chose to turn its back on American history and tradition.

 Jonathan Foreman, writing in The Daily Mail (12.8.13), says:

S C Gwynne, author of Empire Of The Summer Moon about the rise and fall of the Comanche, says simply: ‘No tribe in the history of the Spanish, French, Mexican, Texan, and American occupations of this land had ever caused so much havoc and death. None was even a close second.’

He refers to the ‘demonic immorality’ of Comanche attacks on white settlers, the way in which torture, killings and gang-rapes were routine. ‘The logic of Comanche raids was straightforward,’ he explains.

‘All the men were killed, and any men who were captured alive were tortured; the captive women were gang raped. Babies were invariably killed.’

‘One by one, the children and young women were pegged out naked beside the camp fire,’ according to a contemporary account. ‘They were skinned, sliced, and horribly mutilated, and finally burned alive by vengeful women determined to wring the last shriek and convulsion from their agonized bodies. Matilda Lockhart’s six-year-old sister was among these unfortunates who died screaming under the high plains moon.’

Not only were the Comanche specialists in torture, they were also the most ferocious and successful warriors — indeed, they become known as ‘Lords of the Plains’. They were as imperialist and genocidal as the white settlers who eventually vanquished them.

When they first migrated to the great plains of the American South in the late 18th century from the Rocky Mountains, not only did they achieve dominance over the tribes there, they almost exterminated the Apaches, among the greatest horse warriors in the world.

The Comanches were in every way equal to the white soldiers who tried to eradicate them.  They were as stalwart, determined, and brutal as the Long Knives.  They were a valiant and noble enemy.

Of course they killed many white people; and as Smithsonian scholar Ives reports, they were far bloodier than their ‘civilized’ oppressors.  The Comanches knew – just like the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and Boko Haram know – that savage brutality is a weapon of war, meant to frighten, intimidate, and terrorize.  So if Daniel Snyder wanted to raise White Wolf to preeminence and a position of honor and respect, he would have to recognize the Chief’s bloody credentials.

There are many tribes that rival the Comanches for savagery – the Cheyenne, Apaches, and Blackfeet to name just a few.  The Apaches were especially known for their raids on white settlements from which they abducted women and enslaved children.

The Apaches would also have been a good choice for the name to replace the ‘Redskins’.

There is a tendency to whitewash history when it suits politically correct causes.  The barbarism of many Native American tribes is swept under the rug nowadays, and the Indian is portrayed as an innocent victim of white imperialism.  The Indian was at one with nature, PC advocates avow.  He never killed more than he could eat, sowed and reaped according to his need, and lived in communal harmony.  These same hagiographers conveniently forget that Indian tribes not only killed white people but each other.  The Comanches were nearly successful in wiping out the Apaches in battles which must have been epic in their savagery.

If there ever was a symbol of American courage, independence, and nativist glory, it was the Indian, the Native American who fought against white, European imperialism, defended his tribe, his kin, and his culture against the violent, presumptive intrusion of a foreign culture.  The red man should be honored, not expunged.

Image result for images white wolf comanche chief

At a recent NFL football game, fans of the Kansas City Chiefs did the ‘tomahawk chop’, the same rhythmic chop done by Atlanta Braves fans.  There was nothing racist in the gesture.  Far from it. It was an evocation of the defiant, territorial, proud Native American stance against white intrusion.  The tomahawk chop was in honor of white heads decapitated, white scalps taken, white women raped, white settlements burned.  Why should any woke, sensitive, inclusive, collaborative white progressive object?

But they do, and that is the irony and the lie of modern progressivism.  In the all-out, winner-take-all, scorched earth policy of radical, liberal America, there is no accounting for history. Past events must be seen through the deconstructionist lens of race-gender-ethnicity, and all other optics are false, distorted, and photo-shopped.

The same absurd cancel culture wants to marginalize Washington, Jefferson, and Hamilton for ‘sins against humanity’, unforgiveable racist insults enough to neuter any historic achievements.  The foundation of the nation, the writing of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, and the remarkable Enlightenment Preamble and Bill of Rights are worth nothing compared to the slaves they kept.

Redskins owner Snyder has capitulated to the worst, most venal, demands of the progressive Left as has the ownership of the Cleveland Indians which, in an even more shameful and silly conversion, changed the name of the team to The Guardians invoking the image of the Art Deco statues on a nearby bridges which had for years symbolized safe travels and nothing more.

American Indians were noble adversaries; but victims of the inevitable losing conflict against a powerful, better-armed, and implacable adversary.  There should be no talk of genocide within this existentially permanent context of ruler and ruled, conquered and conqueror. The armies of Genghis Khan were not genocidaires but simply triumphant. The Indians lost, inevitably, but their loss should not be mourned since it is a part of dynamic history.

Yet their symbols of courageous defiance, heroism, and honor should never be forgotten – Redskins, Chief, Braves, Warriors should be remembered.

Daniel Snyder’s capitulation to lubricious Left should never be forgotten.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.