Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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Dr LOD
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Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

Post by Dr LOD »

I do have to give DCP some credit for this post, which for the most part does address some of the historical issues Native Americans have faced.
Although I do wish he would provide the original link to the article, probably a minor oversight.


https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeters ... eenth.html

A Native American Perspective on Juneteenth

by Tom Pittman



Given that North America had about 388,000 African slaves, and at least 2.5 million Native American slaves, the abolition of slavery in the United States of America is an important matter in Native American history.

According to the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database kept by professors David Eltis and David Richardson:

• About 12.5 million Africans were shipped to the New World

• About 10.7 million Africans survived the voyage

• About 388,000 Africans were shipped to North America.

And according to Andrés Reséndez, a historian at the University of California Davis:

• Between 2.5 million and 5 million Native Americans were enslaved in the United States.

European colonizers didn’t just steal Africans from their homelands, they stole homelands from indigenous Americans. And I guess we all were candidates for slavery.

On September 22, 1862 President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation theoretically ended slavery in the United States.

On January 31, 1863 the 13th Amendment officially ended slavery in the United States.

On June 19, 1865 Major General Gordon Granger’s order to the people of Texas began to actually end of the practice of slavery.

Most people see these dates as milestones in African American history, but they all were important events in Native American history as well.

For instance, I am a member of the Tlingit tribe of Southeast Alaska. I am of the Raven moiety, and of the T’akdeintaan (Sea Pigeon) clan. My Tlingit name is Koohook. My mother raised me in the ways of our people: I harvested herring eggs, fished, hunted, wore regalia, danced, sang, ate Tlingit foods, and learned what my mom called “Native values”.

But there was a time when Native Values were different than the values I was taught.

My tribe is one of the indigenous tribes of America that used to own slaves.

In fact, it is estimated that at the time slaves were freed in the United States, about one-third of the Tlingit population were slaves.


I guess that means there is about a 33% chance that I am a descendant of slaves. Perhaps my ancestors owned slaves — I don’t know.

In 1776, America’s Declaration of Independence declared that “all men are created equal” and “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.”

But consider how reluctant Americans have historically been in believing in equality, especially for Native Americans.

• 1869: Black Americans given the right to vote.

• 1920: Women given the right to vote.

• 1924: Native Americans win a CONDITIONAL right to citizenship to be decided state by state.

• 1962: New Mexico finally became the 50th state to guarantee Native Americans the right to vote.

An estimated 130 million Native Americans were killed as European colonizers made way for the founding of United States of America.

For perspective, the current population of the U.S. is 328 million.

More than 10 times more Native Americans were killed than the number of Africans taken to be slaves in North or South America combined.

This is a great country; I am proud to be an American.

But I will be prouder still when *all* Americans finally and completely believe that all men are created equal, and are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.

Thanks for listening.
A few more interesting points and books on the subjects that were raised.

- Probably the best book on the subject of Indian Slavery.
The Other Slavery: The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America by Andres Resendez
https://www.amazon.com/Other-Slavery-Un ... B011H55MIG
https://www.npr.org/2016/04/17/47162221 ... er-slavery

- a good book by Jared Farmer that discusses the historical LDS church and Native American relationships
On Zions Mount https://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php ... 0674047433

-At least in New Mexico it really took until 1978 for "full unfettered voting rights" to be codified in the State Constitution. The irony of the case was it started as a group of white LDS members who were seeking to limit the voting rights of the local Navajo, The final ruling against the white plaintiffs brought the needed changes to the State constitution, in favor of Native American Voting Rights. https://www.courtlistener.com/opinion/1 ... ind-sch-d/

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Doctor CamNC4Me
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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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And of course The Midge had to make it about himself:

“I was quite recently called a racist merely because I am a white male.

...

Now my own Father would be seen as a racist. I have discussed this in an essay that will, I am told, soon be published. But I show that when he actually knew a Black, he loved him. My friend Darius Gray, who has the right credentials, has explained to me that this is exactly the kind of "racism" that Blacks often have toward Whites.“

He knew “a Black.” But he loved “the Black.” But he was racist. So... how are we supposed to not infer that Lyin’ Lou, who loves the Maori, but has said objectively awful things about them, isn’t a racist who paternally loves his charges?

Also, for some reason he decides to drag Hugh “stolen valor” Nibley into his narcissism: “Dan: All I can do is smile at your remark. I wonder if a certain someone might have labeled Hugh Nibley a racist because he actually visited and took seriously the Hopi on the third mesa.“

The greatest gift Dan Peterson has given the world is serving Lou Midgley up on a platter like, say, Hannibal Lecter would, which is piece by piece, delightfully prepared, and meticulously curated. This is his design.

- Doc

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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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Professor Peterson to Louis Midgley

You are also -- by definition -- a racist because you are a believing Latter-day Saint. Believing the Book of Mormon to be historically authentic, you strip Native Americans and the Maori and other Polynesians of their native origin stories and their own pre-Restoration understanding of themselves.

Curiously, I've never seen anybody who makes that argument denounce contemporary science and anthropology as racist.

But just ask a modern geneticist or anthropologist how much credence she gives to the Navajo account of First Man, First Woman, Coyote, their travels through the multi-colored worlds, their emergence into this one, their creation of the first Hogan, the birth of Changing Woman, and her twins, Monster Slayer and Born for Water. Does she endorse the claim that the Hopi used to live beneath the Earth prior to their emergence in the Grand Canyon? That Maasaw, this Fourth World's divine Caretaker and Creator, granted them permission to stay in it if they promised to be good stewards of it?

White supremacist science, you might say, is at war with indigenous self-understandings. But that's apparently okay, perhaps because it's mostly done by non-Latter-day Saints.
In my experience of studying about a half dozen Native American religious beliefs, from practicing members, and taking part in ceremonies. Native American beliefs are more about an individuals relationship with and being in harmony with god. And lacks such a reliance on facts individuals and history that one finds with LDS practices.

Where LDS practices become racist is that it culturally appropriates and strips the identities of all those people they call Lamanites, calls them filthy and loathsome, and cursed from god due to the color of their skin.

I have yet to find any current genetic, anthropological, or archeological scientist to currently make such specific claims. Scientific knowledge evolves and changes as we learn new things.

Yet LDS doctrine is based off of such “facts.” Currently DNA science has reduced Lamanites from “the principal ancestors” to “among.” Which is still a long shot from reality.

No Professor Peterson thse scientific disciplines you cited are less racist to my people than your religious beliefs are.

And yes it is a fact that Brigham Young issued an extermination order in 1850 to ethnically cleansed Utah Valley. Those actions would follow under the definitions set out in the 1948 UN convention on Genocide.

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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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Does Dr. Peterson honestly believe that what makes the Book of Mormon 's claims racist is people question the reality of the story?

He doesn't recognize the Book of Mormon reflects racist views that couldn't accept the indigenous people the Europeans encountered were responsible for the works of architecture, engineering, agriculture, and other technological feats Europeans saw evidenced around them and felt required a missing, exterminated old world immigration to explain? But because an anthropologist might not accept as historical fact an anthropomorphizing story about Coyote this suggests to him that they should be considered racist even as the field is one of the first to call out these terrible narratives from the past like the one that is the central story of the Book of Mormon? So he's questioning the science that shut down the Book of Mormon claims AND trying to paint them with the same brush because in his broken way of thinking it's apples to apples when science makes a discovery that shows there was no Nephite migration while also leaving mythology to other branches of study than, say, evolutionary biology or physics?

Wow.
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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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Does Dr. Peterson honestly believe that what makes the Book of Mormon 's claims racist is people question the reality of the story?
I’m not sure he is all over the place with that comment.

I have yet to meet a Navajo that takes their traditional religious beliefs in the same literal fashion as LDS folks do. To them the truth, of their creation narrative, is how it connects them to their creator the earth then to their people through the stories not the stories themselves.

To someone like Peterson and Midgley the truth of their beliefs is more about being more right and correct then the next person. That is why science and scientism is such a challenge for that type of view.

That post was more about him ignorantly blowing hot air.

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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

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Thank you for the additional insight, Dr. LOD.

I do think there is a bit more to Peterson's attempt to portray the issue as one where scientific discovery influences how literally one takes a particular narrative. I believe he is deflecting from the historical 19th Century context that informed the creation of the Book of Mormon. That being the widely held view the Native Americans of the time were too course, too uncivilized to have been responsible themselves or descended from the same people who were responsible for the mound building and other evidence the Americas were home to advanced civilizations.

The Book of Mormon is based entirely on this premise - that an extinct civilized race is the only explanation for this because the American Indians were savages.

Consider this poem from 1832 titled The Prairie by one of the great poets of the era that demonstrates this was a part of the zeitgeist around the composition of the Book of Mormon:

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/ ... e-prairies

Excerpt:

As o’er the verdant waste I guide my steed,
Among the high rank grass that sweeps his sides
The hollow beating of his footsteps seems
A sacrilegious sound. I think of those
Upon whose rest he tramples. Are they here—
The dead of other days?—and did the dust
Of these fair solitudes once stir with life
And burn with passion? Let the mighty mounds
That overlook the rivers, or that rise
In the dim forest crowded with old oaks,
Answer. A race, that long has passed away,
Built them;—a disciplined and populous race
Heaped, with long toil, the earth, while yet the Greek
Was hewing the Pentelicus to forms
Of symmetry, and rearing on its rock
The glittering Parthenon. These ample fields
Nourished their harvest, here their herds were fed,
When haply by their stalls the bison lowed,
And bowed his maned shoulder to the yoke.
All day this desert murmured with their toils,
Till twilight blushed, and lovers walked, and wooed
In a forgotten language, and old tunes,
From instruments of unremembered form,
Gave the soft winds a voice. The red man came—
The roaming hunter tribes, warlike and fierce,
And the mound-builders vanished from the earth.
The solitude of centuries untold
Has settled where they dwelt. The prairie-wolf
Hunts in their meadows, and his fresh-dug den
Yawns by my path. The gopher mines the ground
Where stood their swarming cities. All is gone;
All—save the piles of earth that hold their bones,
The platforms where they worshipped unknown gods,
The barriers which they builded from the soil
To keep the foe at bay—till o’er the walls
The wild beleaguerers broke, and, one by one,
The strongholds of the plain were forced, and heaped
With corpses. The brown vultures of the wood
Flocked to those vast uncovered sepulchres,
And sat unscared and silent at their feast.
Haply some solitary fugitive,
Lurking in marsh and forest, till the sense
Of desolation and of fear became
Bitterer than death, yielded himself to die.
Man’s better nature triumphed then. Kind words
Welcomed and soothed him; the rude conquerors
Seated the captive with their chiefs; he chose
A bride among their maidens, and at length
Seemed to forget—yet ne’er forgot—the wife
Of his first love, and her sweet little ones,
Butchered, amid their shrieks, with all his race.


The highly regarded poet, William Bryant, had nothing to do with Mormonism. That was simply what people assumed at the time. The natives were savages, so there must have been a race they rendered extinct. The Book of Mormon is part of the tradition that viewed this extinct race as members of the lost tribes of Israel. But otherwise it was not inventing so much as offering up an answer to a question people in the time and place of it's authorship would have understood it was answering. Much like it seems very interested in answering other questions of the time relying on pseudepigraphic authority.

The Book of Mormon has ensured these outdated, racist beliefs found a way to survive into the 21st Century. His claim that this is akin to an anthropologist who fails to view native religious stories as fact in an etic rather than emic manner as of a kind is revealing. If he honestly believes that, he does not understand the underlying issue. If he knows he was misrepresenting the roots of what makes the Book of Mormon a relic of past racist beliefs that allows them to persist long since they should have been sent to the bin of history, then, well.
The world is always full of the sound of waves..but who knows the heart of the sea, a hundred feet down? Who knows it's depth?
~ Eiji Yoshikawa

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Dr LOD
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Re: Positive Shout out to Professor Peterson for a Juneteenth post on Native Americans.

Post by Dr LOD »

honorentheos wrote:
Mon Jun 22, 2020 1:41 am

I do think there is a bit more to Peterson's attempt to portray the issue as one where scientific discovery influences how literally one takes a particular narrative. I believe he is deflecting from the historical 19th Century context that informed the creation of the Book of Mormon. That being the widely held view the Native Americans of the time were too course, too uncivilized to have been responsible themselves or descended from the same people who were responsible for the mound building and other evidence the Americas were home to advanced civilizations.

The Book of Mormon is based entirely on this premise - that an extinct civilized race is the only explanation for this because the American Indians were savages.
Like I said Native American beliefs, and religion has not been disrupted by science to the same degree as traditional LDS theology. So to make a comparison is pretty silly.

It was a very common thought at that time in many circles. The Book of Mormon does not cover anything new or that wasn't commonly discussed that time in the US and Europe. There are still people trying to make Jews out of the Cherokee, and it was very common in the 1820's. The Cherokee even used this in an attempt to keep their lands in the South East.

At the time 1820 - 1880 these theories were a way to placate a guilty conscious of a nation as they expanded with Manifest Destiny. It was a simple way to displace the guilt, and declare themselves innocent of what had happened and what was happening to indigenous peoples. The Book of Mormon is this guilt being excused by a made up story, and called scripture.

Here is a podcast that covers some of this.

https://nakedmormonismpodcast.com/episo ... mith-pt-1/
https://nakedmormonismpodcast.com/episo ... mith-pt-2/

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