I have already talked about People of the Lie by M. Scott Peck, M.D., who subtitled his book The Hope for Healing Human Evil. As a psychopath, I am used to being called “evil.” Even those who are too politically and scientifically correct to use the word “evil,” seem to mean the same thing using more neutral language. For example, Tina Taylor, author of No Psychos, No Druggies, No Stooges, said, “Psychopathy is a neurological disorder that makes them extremely self-serving, with little empathy and no conscience. This means that they will take advantage of you to no end.” For that reason, Ms.Taylor thinks we should give all politicians a brain scan to keep psychopaths from running for office.
Since only 1% of the population is psychopathic, all the evil in the world can’t be our fault. Empaths sin plenty. The only difference is that they feel guilty for their sins. Does that make them better people? What would their victims say? And sometimes, they justify their crimes. When they are avenging someone for whom they have empathy, they probably feel righteous. But the bible says otherwise…
None is righteous, no, not one;
Why are there mass killings in such seemingly benign places as schools? Why did the Nazis bring about a holocaust? Why do some people become serial killers and murder innocent victims, some with real viciousness? Why is there evil in the world? Yet most people think they are good. We Americans are a “shining city on the hill.” Other countries do evil. But we are the good guys. Psychopaths are “social predators” but the rest of “us” are nice people. Aren’t “we?”
The Slaughter of Native Americans Was the U.S.’s Original Stand Your Ground. “The American Indians lost nearly 98% of their land to what one Internet site called the American ‘conquest’. There’s no other word for it. Americans came to an occupied land and conquered the rightful owners of that land, killing millions in the process. The government then banished those rightful owners to concentration camps called reservations.” I was taught in school that the settlers’ farms destroyed wilderness which had been a hunting ground for the Natives. This created conflict, hence the warfare between the “Indians” and the settlers. We read about unfortunate “misunderstandings” where settlers, wishing to be kind, gave the “Indians” blankets which had been used by people with measles. Only the disease was smallpox, not measles. That this was really intentional germ warfare is indicated by a quote
Sir Jeffrey Amherst, commander-in-chief of British forces in North America, wrote to Colonel Henry Bouquet at Fort Pitt:
“You will do well to try to inoculate the Indians [with smallpox] by means of blankets, as well as to try every other method, that can serve to extirpate this execrable race.”
Consequently, settlers spread smallpox to the Native Americans by distributing blankets previously owned by contagious patients.
“Indians” were known to scalp hapless white settlers. Well, after all, they were just savages who didn’t know better. That is what I was raised to believe. Now, I am finding out that it was the white man who scalped the indigenous people! Not the other way around. “Colonists were paid for each Penobscot Native they killed – fifty pounds for adult male scalps, twenty-five for adult female scalps, and twenty for scalps of boys and girls under age twelve. These proclamations explicitly display the settlers’ ‘intent to kill’, a major indicator of genocidal acts.”
I was first apprised of this fact by a Native American I happened to work with. I found it hard to believe as I expect many readers of this blog will also have trouble believing. After all. They are the savages. Not us. We are civilized. How deep does our “civilization” really go? The novel, Lord of the Flies, depicts a fictional group of English schoolboys who find themselves stranded on an island and quickly revert to “savagery.” Although I know of no “savage” tribe that would willfully destroy it’s entire environment to catch one fugitive. But there was no history of scalping in Europe before they came to the Americas. They must have learned the practice from the Natives and then practiced it against them in retaliation? Isn’t that so?
Dartmouth’s Calloway said it is unclear whether New England tribes took scalps before contact with Europeans. At least two tribal spokesmen say theirs did not.
Mashantucket Pequot spokesman Buddy Gwin says scalping “was not a practice traditional to first nations peoples” until becoming “a retaliatory act” against colonists.
John Brown, who is tribal historical-preservation officer for Rhode Island’s Narragansett Indians, said that bodily mutilation was considered “dishonorable” until it was “learned” from Europeans in the mid-17th century.
Even more grisly, is an account I got from a book called An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz:
Worse, after the smoke had cleared, they had returned and finished off the few survivors while scalping and mutilating the corpses—women and men, young and old, children, babies. Then they decorated their weapons and caps with body parts—fetuses, penises, breasts, and vulvas—and, in the words of Acoma poet Simon Ortiz, “Stuck them / on their hats to dry / Their fingers greasy / and slick.”1 Once back in Denver, they displayed the trophies to the adoring public in Denver’s Apollo Theater and in saloons.
But that’s depraved! Cutting out fetuses? Vulvas? It reads like an account of a serial murder. But those people are psychopaths. What other kind of person would commit such a grisly murder? These were “normal” and respectable Americans. Our ancestors.
As countries go, the sainted United States certainly is as bad as any. I’ve been banging on about the genocide of Native Americans and haven’t even mentioned the practice of slavery primarily against Africans kidnapped for that purpose. Blacks are still not equal and, if the alt.right and Trump have their way, they never will be. Prisons for profit are a modern way in which the system perpetuates slavery of blacks to this day. And that doesn’t even cover the slaughter of non-whites all over the world. My first response was, “No wonder we have mass killings. We have always been a violent, cruel nation.” But so many other countries have equally shocking pasts. Nations obliterate each other all the time. There was an inquisition that couldn’t have been so pretty. The sun never set on the British empire. Now we have Israel doing to the Palestinians what American settlers did to the indigenous Americans. And the US is still killing people all over the world. Even the “liberal” Obama killed civilians with drones. Maybe the bible is right. Certainly, there are decent people. But we accept evil so easily as long as it’s made to look not-so-bad. Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye?
- See Unrau, Indians, Alcohol, and the Roads to Taos and Santa Fe.