Nations, Tribes, Groups, and Meme’s

In a world that runs on headlines and soundbites, ‘humorous’ memes are at the heart of an all-pervasive disinformation movement.

The Thanksgiving Holiday is almost here again, and again we’ll be seeing the same sort of meme storm that we see so often when this holiday arrives or the subject of immigration comes up. You know the one; it’s usually a depiction of a Native American or a Native American and a pilgrim with some sort of stupid comment about refusing the ‘immigrant’ pilgrim permission to enter the country.

This meme and so many like it always irritate me. If I had seen it once or twice as a joke, maybe it wouldn’t bother me so much, but it’s so all pervasive and it so misleading.

I hardly ever mention this because I don’t want to be one of those people that harp on their Native American heritage, but I am speaking as a person with a mix of Penobscot and Sioux/Nez Pierce heritage. There was no consolidated Nation here at the time and not a single ‘nation’ that existed had laws that had anything to do with immigration. On top of that, many of the tribes were killing each other in raids and wars for dominance and resources. They did horrendous things to each other.

Also, there are indications that white Europeans have been here for 30,000 years or more. They traveled across the Atlantic in much the same way that Samoans and Chinese travelled across the Pacific. So who were the originals? It doesn’t matter.

What does matter is the tribe that won out in the end. In the end, it was the European tribes that came here as all others came here over the long course of time and it was they who consolidated and organized a culture and a civilization that survived.

After the battles for supremacy were over, it was the most recent influx of people- groups and tribes if you will (Europeans and others)- who coalesced into a nation that stopped the constant warring and killing and enslavement that had been going on here for thousands of years.

Sure, there were great civilizations of Native Americans, but they didn’t survive. They disappeared or disbanded- we don’t know why in so many cases, but they did not have the fortitude to be a thriving society when the latest batch of Europeans arrived, so like in the past, they adapted or they faded away into the annals of history.

Exactly the way it has been throughout all of human history all over the globe.

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