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Yes, we were born in blood...

Goshin

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Much as I hate to agree, even in the slightest, with the hate-America-first crowd, I have to admit much of our history is drenched in blood and our nation built on selfish and callous acts.


Every square foot of land was taken from the Native population, typically by force. We didn't quite commit genocide... but we tried. In a fit of conscience we let the survivors live on bits and pieces of land we didn't really want. Pretty damn harsh.

It is also true this story is repeated in history endlessly... almost every nation that exists does so because it took the land by force from someone else who was there before them. Google the Celts, Angles, Saxons and Jutes... throw in Normans and stir with a sword.

That doesn't make it RIGHT... but it does make it common practice. The only reason fingers get pointed at us over it is that it was relatively recent history, and because we let some Natives live and retain their tribal identity... in many cases the conquerors were less tolerant. There is no Reservation for Celts and Jutes in Britain... there remain a few Ainu in northern Japan, but they keep that very quiet.


Yes, we kept slaves. So has virtually every other nation on Earth, at some point. We get smacked about it because we were among the last to give it up. Well, if you don't count places where literal or de-facto slavery is STILL practiced, like Saudi Arabia, Yemen, certain Eastern Euro countries...


Yes, it took a long time for the freed slaves to be integrated into society at large and become full fledged citizens with full rights. We were also kind of harsh on immigrant Chinese and Irish for a time. Yes, this was a Bad Thing.

Again, though, a rather common theme in history: treating those whose appearance and culture differ from the norm as less than full citizens, or less than equal. We're hardly alone in that... try being a Christian in Saudi Arabia, or a Jew in Iran, or a Korean in Japan, and see if you're treated differently. Try being an Uighur in Han-dominated China...



Then there are all those foreign wars of the past 50 years... Vietnam, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, Afganistan, Iraq II, and our bombing wars or support of civil war in Libya, Syria, and so forth... yes, we were looking out for our economic and political interests. Yes, we shed blood over oil. Yes, we were looking after our Big Money concerns and ambitions of dominating world politics.


So has every other nation that became a World Power in history, from the Persians and Romans to the Chinese and Japanese Empires; from the colonial powers of Spain, France and Britain, to the Soviets and finally to America.

Yeah, it isn't nice to have some outsider bomb the **** out of your country and tell you that you can't invade your neighbors and build a regional hegemony, if you're on the receiving end. :D



But frankly we're a lot more gentle about it than most historical empires. The Romans crucified rebels by the thousands and enslaved conquered nations by the millions. More recently, look up Nanking/Nanjing Massacre, the Bataan Death March, and the Holocaust.

The Brits were a relatively civilized and benign Empire, but even they had their share of atrocities: The Amritsar Massacre in India, the "Chinese Resettlement", the Boer Concentration Camps, and more.

The Soviets and Red China were responsible for the deaths of tens of millions in the 20th century.

For today... well, look at what ISIS is doing in territory it has conquered.


What does Imperial America do? Well, we kick your Army's ass... we TRY not to kill too many civilians... we overthrow your dictator, rebuild your country, and give you a shot at democracy... THEN we GO AWAY saying "Now behave yourself, mmkay?"


Germany and Japan seem to be doing fairly well for themselves...



IN short, yeah we've been bad... but really no worse than everyone else and in many ways better.



So maybe you hate-America-firsters could be a little more forgiving to your own nation... and possibly even recognize that America is not the great evil in the world, that the world would not exactly join hands and sing Kum-ba-ya if big evil America disappeared from the scene...
 

Dittohead not!

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So, let's go back an re write history a bit. The Europeans come to the new world, see it populated, and so don't try to colonize it. They trade with the natives, but otherwise leave them alone.

So, today what is the US and Canada is instead a continent divided among hundreds of tribes of people still living a stone age existence. There is some trade among them, but little unity as they represent hundreds of different languages and cultures. North America is the poorest area of the world, poverty worse than Africa. Disease is rampant. Periodic famines wipe out populations. Moreover, warfare has progressed from bows and arrows to AK 47s. Bands of warriors roam, raping and pillaging, much as is happening in Africa. There are few roads in North America, fewer cars and trucks, no electricity except in a few larger towns, and no modern medical care. The area produces nothing much of value, so trade is limited.

Meanwhile, in Europe, the Nazis were able to overwhelm the democracies and take over the region. The "master race" has wiped out most of the Jews, most of the gays, all of the Gypsies. Europe is living in an Orwellian dystopia much like the one that exists in North Korea, except that George Orwell was executed as an enemy of the state long before he did much writing.

Cultures, like organisms, are subject to selection of the fittest. That's how modern societies evolve. Don't cry for the societies that have fallen by the wayside, but celebrate the ones that have survived to pass their culture on to future generations. Life is much better than it would have been had the colonizers just stayed home.
 

HenryChinaski

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With very little European contact, I think the indigenous people of north America's cultures would've evolved and progressed. It wouldn't have paralleled European society or culture, though they would've progressed in some fashion.
 

Goshin

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With very little European contact, I think the indigenous people of north America's cultures would've evolved and progressed. It wouldn't have paralleled European society or culture, though they would've progressed in some fashion.



Perhaps, but it is debatable. The natives tribes had not advanced a great deal in the previous 300 years...
 

justabubba

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Much as I hate to agree, even in the slightest, with the hate-America-first crowd, I have to admit much of our history is drenched in blood and our nation built on selfish and callous acts.


Every square foot of land was taken from the Native population, typically by force. We didn't quite commit genocide... but we tried. In a fit of conscience we let the survivors live on bits and pieces of land we didn't really want. Pretty damn harsh.

It is also true this story is repeated in history endlessly... almost every nation that exists does so because it took the land by force from someone else who was there before them. Google the Celts, Angles, Saxons and Jutes... throw in Normans and stir with a sword.

That doesn't make it RIGHT... but it does make it common practice. The only reason fingers get pointed at us over it is that it was relatively recent history, and because we let some Natives live and retain their tribal identity... in many cases the conquerors were less tolerant. There is no Reservation for Celts and Jutes in Britain... there remain a few Ainu in northern Japan, but they keep that very quiet.


Yes, we kept slaves. So has virtually every other nation on Earth, at some point. We get smacked about it because we were among the last to give it up. Well, if you don't count places where literal or de-facto slavery is STILL practiced, like Saudi Arabia, Yemen, certain Eastern Euro countries...


Yes, it took a long time for the freed slaves to be integrated into society at large and become full fledged citizens with full rights. We were also kind of harsh on immigrant Chinese and Irish for a time. Yes, this was a Bad Thing.


Again, though, a rather common theme in history: treating those whose appearance and culture differ from the norm as less than full citizens, or less than equal. We're hardly alone in that... try being a Christian in Saudi Arabia, or a Jew in Iran, or a Korean in Japan, and see if you're treated differently. Try being an Uighur in Han-dominated China...



Then there are all those foreign wars of the past 50 years... Vietnam, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, Afganistan, Iraq II, and our bombing wars or support of civil war in Libya, Syria, and so forth... yes, we were looking out for our economic and political interests. Yes, we shed blood over oil. Yes, we were looking after our Big Money concerns and ambitions of dominating world politics.


So has every other nation that became a World Power in history, from the Persians and Romans to the Chinese and Japanese Empires; from the colonial powers of Spain, France and Britain, to the Soviets and finally to America.

Yeah, it isn't nice to have some outsider bomb the **** out of your country and tell you that you can't invade your neighbors and build a regional hegemony, if you're on the receiving end. :D



But frankly we're a lot more gentle about it than most historical empires. The Romans crucified rebels by the thousands and enslaved conquered nations by the millions. More recently, look up Nanking/Nanjing Massacre, the Bataan Death March, and the Holocaust.

The Brits were a relatively civilized and benign Empire, but even they had their share of atrocities: The Amritsar Massacre in India, the "Chinese Resettlement", the Boer Concentration Camps, and more.

The Soviets and Red China were responsible for the deaths of tens of millions in the 20th century.

For today... well, look at what ISIS is doing in territory it has conquered.


What does Imperial America do? Well, we kick your Army's ass... we TRY not to kill too many civilians... we overthrow your dictator, rebuild your country, and give you a shot at democracy... THEN we GO AWAY saying "Now behave yourself, mmkay?"


Germany and Japan seem to be doing fairly well for themselves...



IN short, yeah we've been bad... but really no worse than everyone else and in many ways better.



So maybe you hate-America-firsters could be a little more forgiving to your own nation... and possibly even recognize that America is not the great evil in the world, that the world would not exactly join hands and sing Kum-ba-ya if big evil America disappeared from the scene...

your observation in total is valid
however, the sentiments about jews in iran is unjustified:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persian_Jews
 

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Here in Canada, our native population are not doing well for the most part.

There is internal strife and corruption, alcoholism, drug addiction, prostitution with slavery involved, rape, murder and mayhem...

it's not a pretty picture with no solutions in sight

we have thrown millions upon millions of dollars at it, but still the problem does not go away
 

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With very little European contact, I think the indigenous people of north America's cultures would've evolved and progressed. It wouldn't have paralleled European society or culture, though they would've progressed in some fashion.

Eh.....maybe. Without European contact they wouldn't have had horses, which played a huge role in their culture, at least in North America.

They still would have been vulnerable to disease and without introduction to European firearms weaponry would have still been inferior.
 

Lovebug

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Much as I hate to agree, even in the slightest, with the hate-America-first crowd, I have to admit much of our history is drenched in blood and our nation built on selfish and callous acts.


Every square foot of land was taken from the Native population, typically by force. We didn't quite commit genocide... but we tried. In a fit of conscience we let the survivors live on bits and pieces of land we didn't really want. Pretty damn harsh.

It is also true this story is repeated in history endlessly... almost every nation that exists does so because it took the land by force from someone else who was there before them. Google the Celts, Angles, Saxons and Jutes... throw in Normans and stir with a sword.

That doesn't make it RIGHT... but it does make it common practice.

I agree mostly, but want to add that, if they knew then what we know now....Different times. What's more, we have learned from the mistakes more quickly than most nations in the time of our existence.
 

DamnYankee

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Here in Canada, our native population are not doing well for the most part.

There is internal strife and corruption, alcoholism, drug addiction, prostitution with slavery involved, rape, murder and mayhem...

it's not a pretty picture with no solutions in sight

we have thrown millions upon millions of dollars at it, but still the problem does not go away

We have the same problem in every major city ran by the left. It's sad, but very true.
 

Dittohead not!

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Eh.....maybe. Without European contact they wouldn't have had horses, which played a huge role in their culture, at least in North America.

They still would have been vulnerable to disease and without introduction to European firearms weaponry would have still been inferior.

They didn't have horses, as horses had become extinct in North America thousands of years before. The could have traded for horses, of course.
But, they also didn't have written language, didn't have the wheel, didn't have iron and steel, hadn't made a lot of advances. Most of t hem were living in a stone age culture. Moreover, there was no actual monolithic culture of "native Americans", after all. There were Iroquois, Cherokee, Apache, and at least a thousand others. There were builders of cities in Mexico and in Peru, but even they had no written language, or knowledge of the people who lived in North America. They might have developed those things in another ten thousand or so years, but there is no reason to think they would have.
 

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They didn't have horses, as horses had become extinct in North America thousands of years before. The could have traded for horses, of course.
But, they also didn't have written language, didn't have the wheel, didn't have iron and steel, hadn't made a lot of advances. Most of t hem were living in a stone age culture. Moreover, there was no actual monolithic culture of "native Americans", after all. There were Iroquois, Cherokee, Apache, and at least a thousand others. There were builders of cities in Mexico and in Peru, but even they had no written language, or knowledge of the people who lived in North America. They might have developed those things in another ten thousand or so years, but there is no reason to think they would have.

Yeah, that's what I meant. Without the Euros, they couldn't have acquired horses which then played a big role.
 

devildavid

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It kind of helped that this country doesn't border on any major country that threatened it. Being separated from the rest of the world by two large oceans makes us lucky, not relatively morally superior. We all come from the same violent stock. Physical isolation protected us from major conflict for most of our history.
 

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So, let's go back an re write history a bit. The Europeans come to the new world, see it populated, and so don't try to colonize it. They trade with the natives, but otherwise leave them alone.

So, today what is the US and Canada is instead a continent divided among hundreds of tribes of people still living a stone age existence. There is some trade among them, but little unity as they represent hundreds of different languages and cultures. North America is the poorest area of the world, poverty worse than Africa. Disease is rampant. Periodic famines wipe out populations. Moreover, warfare has progressed from bows and arrows to AK 47s. Bands of warriors roam, raping and pillaging, much as is happening in Africa. There are few roads in North America, fewer cars and trucks, no electricity except in a few larger towns, and no modern medical care. The area produces nothing much of value, so trade is limited.

Meanwhile, in Europe, the Nazis were able to overwhelm the democracies and take over the region. The "master race" has wiped out most of the Jews, most of the gays, all of the Gypsies. Europe is living in an Orwellian dystopia much like the one that exists in North Korea, except that George Orwell was executed as an enemy of the state long before he did much writing.

Cultures, like organisms, are subject to selection of the fittest. That's how modern societies evolve. Don't cry for the societies that have fallen by the wayside, but celebrate the ones that have survived to pass their culture on to future generations. Life is much better than it would have been had the colonizers just stayed home.

Or maybe a British Empire with less aggressive expansionist tendencies would have meant a less crushing defeat for the central powers in WW1 and treaty conditions less ideal for the rise of Hitler in the first place. Or an earlier and stronger rejection of naked white supremicism by some colonial powers would have been an attitude which spread to and influenced other European populations, and again prevented Hitler's rise.

Arguing that some of histories greatest crimes against humanity were good things, things to be celebrated, because of what possibly might hypothetically have happened otherwise is not a view I can respect very much.

Would you also say don't cry for the Jews of the Holocaust, because without that we wouldn't have had a UN and universal declaration of human rights?
 

Dittohead not!

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Or maybe a British Empire with less aggressive expansionist tendencies would have meant a less crushing defeat for the central powers in WW1 and treaty conditions less ideal for the rise of Hitler in the first place. Or an earlier and stronger rejection of naked white supremicism by some colonial powers would have been an attitude which spread to and influenced other European populations, and again prevented Hitler's rise.

Arguing that some of histories greatest crimes against humanity were good things, things to be celebrated, because of what possibly might hypothetically have happened otherwise is not a view I can respect very much.

Would you also say don't cry for the Jews of the Holocaust, because without that we wouldn't have had a UN and universal declaration of human rights?

Possibly, the whole Hitler and Nazi thing could have been avoided altogether. That is a better outcome. Would Europe then resemble the Europe of our reality? That may or may not be. Hard to tell.

The greatest crimes against humanity? Human history is a story of people taking over the land of other people. The settling of North America is nothing unique at all. Anyway, it's difficult to see how that area would be anything but a hellhole of poverty and disease had the natives been simply left alone. The European diseases would still have ravaged the population. Besides, it's unlikely in the extreme that there would have been anything resembling the unified and prosperous nations that exist today.

Had the Jews been left alone in Europe, had the holocaust never taken place, then Europe would still be peaceful and prosperous. There is no evidence that the attempt to remove the Jews hand any sort of a positive outcome at all. That's just not a very good analogy at all.
 

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So, let's go back an re write history a bit. The Europeans come to the new world, see it populated, and so don't try to colonize it. They trade with the natives, but otherwise leave them alone.

So, today what is the US and Canada is instead a continent divided among hundreds of tribes of people still living a stone age existence. There is some trade among them, but little unity as they represent hundreds of different languages and cultures. North America is the poorest area of the world, poverty worse than Africa. Disease is rampant. Periodic famines wipe out populations. Moreover, warfare has progressed from bows and arrows to AK 47s. Bands of warriors roam, raping and pillaging, much as is happening in Africa. There are few roads in North America, fewer cars and trucks, no electricity except in a few larger towns, and no modern medical care. The area produces nothing much of value, so trade is limited.

Meanwhile, in Europe, the Nazis were able to overwhelm the democracies and take over the region. The "master race" has wiped out most of the Jews, most of the gays, all of the Gypsies. Europe is living in an Orwellian dystopia much like the one that exists in North Korea, except that George Orwell was executed as an enemy of the state long before he did much writing.

Cultures, like organisms, are subject to selection of the fittest. That's how modern societies evolve. Don't cry for the societies that have fallen by the wayside, but celebrate the ones that have survived to pass their culture on to future generations. Life is much better than it would have been had the colonizers just stayed home.

Is that seriously how you think they lived before us? Just a bunch of starving people in loin clothes crying piteously from over the flames of their own inadequacy?

The true embodiment of the "savage" mentality. They were doing just fine before we came along. Just because they saw no use for elaborate underwear and firearms doesn't mean they weren't taking care of themselves and their people just fine.

Further, because the majority of them had relatively small tribes due to being semi-mobile, there's no reason we couldn't have just struck a deal and stayed on the gigantic swaths of perfectly good land that they weren't even living on. It's not like it was "us or them." Hell, some of the most environmentally poor areas in the US have some of the biggest cities, due to the technological bent to our culture. The Natives didn't even want those places, but we're perfectly happy to thrive on them because some of them give us access to ports or whatever, so to us, the technological requirements of living there are worth it. What's the problem?

This is just nonsense. In reality, the longest-surviving cultures in history were small, simple ones. They go back nearly as far as modern humans have existed, and those who haven't been interfered with still have decent and reasonably long lives. Just because they aren't the biggest doesn't mean they're not fit and successful. As it turns out, it's easier to ensure your long-term survival when you're not stripping your environment to the bone.

There have been many societies that have perished due to demanding too much of their environment without considering the consequences, and we would be wise to consider those lessons from history so that we don't wind up doing the same.

And finally, the 40's in Germany would have been very different if America hadn't been in WWI (not that I agree with your fantastical assessment that America was somehow the sole and absolute saviour of Europe -- Hitler was already bungling the war by the time we got there). For better or worse, I can't say, but the conditions as they existed when Hitler came to power would not be the same, and even if they had, conditions in the rest of the world wouldn't be the same either, so who knows how things would have gone. These things are all connected, dude.
 

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Yep. Humans suck. And they're awesome. It's complicated.
 

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What does Imperial America do? Well, we kick your Army's ass... we TRY not to kill too many civilians... we overthrow your dictator, rebuild your country, and give you a shot at democracy... THEN we GO AWAY saying "Now behave yourself, mmkay?"

This type of attitude is what lead us into Iraq. Yeah, we were going kick their ****ing ass. Saddam was a dead man walking. Americans supported the largely based on pride in their country and hate of Saddam. We kicked Saddam's ass and his was executed, but there is more to starting wars than defeating empires and blowing **** up. We have been pouring trillions into Iraq like an open wound, and for what? Just because we can kick somebody's ass doesn't mean we should start a war.
 

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Is that seriously how you think they lived before us? Just a bunch of starving people in loin clothes crying piteously from over the flames of their own inadequacy?

The true embodiment of the "savage" mentality. They were doing just fine before we came along. Just because they saw no use for elaborate underwear and firearms doesn't mean they weren't taking care of themselves and their people just fine.

Further, because the majority of them had relatively small tribes due to being semi-mobile, there's no reason we couldn't have just struck a deal and stayed on the gigantic swaths of perfectly good land that they weren't even living on. It's not like it was "us or them." Hell, some of the most environmentally poor areas in the US have some of the biggest cities, due to the technological bent to our culture. The Natives didn't even want those places, but we're perfectly happy to thrive on them because some of them give us access to ports or whatever, so to us, the technological requirements of living there are worth it. What's the problem?

This is just nonsense. In reality, the longest-surviving cultures in history were small, simple ones. They go back nearly as far as modern humans have existed, and those who haven't been interfered with still have decent and reasonably long lives. Just because they aren't the biggest doesn't mean they're not fit and successful. As it turns out, it's easier to ensure your long-term survival when you're not stripping your environment to the bone.

There have been many societies that have perished due to demanding too much of their environment without considering the consequences, and we would be wise to consider those lessons from history so that we don't wind up doing the same.

And finally, the 40's in Germany would have been very different if America hadn't been in WWI (not that I agree with your fantastical assessment that America was somehow the sole and absolute saviour of Europe -- Hitler was already bungling the war by the time we got there). For better or worse, I can't say, but the conditions as they existed when Hitler came to power would not be the same, and even if they had, conditions in the rest of the world wouldn't be the same either, so who knows how things would have gone. These things are all connected, dude.

First, the native Americans were living in a stone age culture. Their cultures would never have been able to compete in the modern world, not even the world of the nineteenth century. Fast forward to today, and you seriously think that it would be at all feasible for large swaths of North America to be populated by hunter gatherers? Really? Even without the European diseases, their cultures would never survive in the modern world.

The argument has been made that, had the US stayed out of WWI, Hitler may never have been able to rise to power in the first place. That may be true, I don't know. Neither does anyone else. In WWII, however, Europe would have been in a world of hurt without the intervention of the USA. What Imperial Japan would have done in Asia is another question. It's highly unlikely that modern day Asia would resemble what we have today, and a dead certainty that modern peaceful and prosperous Japan would have been anything the world wants to live with today.
 

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Every nation shed the blood of other people. Its part of life.
 

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It kind of helped that this country doesn't border on any major country that threatened it. Being separated from the rest of the world by two large oceans makes us lucky, not relatively morally superior. We all come from the same violent stock. Physical isolation protected us from major conflict for most of our history.
Makes sense.

We were also lucky to have founders that devised one hell of a document, a framework, that worked damn well, to govern. And their timing was impeccable, with those weak neighbors to north and south, the predators and strong ones separated from us by weeks, in good weather, from being able to sail/mount an invasion against us, we were the perfect place to incubate a smart republic based on limited government , checks and balances, separation of powers, federalism, liberty and private property ownership. We had the time to mature without too much interference.

Would be interesting to theorize about, but had the Russian Revolution occurred in what is the US in 1776 instead of 1917, had the socialists had the same period of protected incubation, not having many strong neighbors on its landed sides actually attacking, some attempting to invade as Napoleon and Hitler tried...what would that look like now? Would they even, being able to remain more true to the ideas of socialism and not requiring a fairly strong military to protect against foreign invasions being so distant, have taken land from the Indians as did the Colonizing Empires?

Or would they have just become as socialistic as the Natives were normally and faded into being them...?

And then no doubt been taken over by a stronger group later just as were the Indians?
 

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With very little European contact, I think the indigenous people of north America's cultures would've evolved and progressed. It wouldn't have paralleled European society or culture, though they would've progressed in some fashion.

When Captain Cook arrived at the west coast of Vancouver Island, the natives he found were living better lives than any of his ordinary seamen could in London. Richer culturally, better fed, by any metric better.
Except technologically...
 

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First, the native Americans were living in a stone age culture. Their cultures would never have been able to compete in the modern world, not even the world of the nineteenth century. Fast forward to today, and you seriously think that it would be at all feasible for large swaths of North America to be populated by hunter gatherers? Really? Even without the European diseases, their cultures would never survive in the modern world.

The argument has been made that, had the US stayed out of WWI, Hitler may never have been able to rise to power in the first place. That may be true, I don't know. Neither does anyone else. In WWII, however, Europe would have been in a world of hurt without the intervention of the USA. What Imperial Japan would have done in Asia is another question. It's highly unlikely that modern day Asia would resemble what we have today, and a dead certainty that modern peaceful and prosperous Japan would have been anything the world wants to live with today.

Like I said, there are still cultures that use even less technology than the Natives, and they're doing perfectly well. Technology is not the only barometer of the advancement of a society. There's also ethics, skill sets, art, longevity, social cohesion (we seem to always forget how important that is for humanity)...

You know, I've watched some documentaries about supposedly "simpler" societies, and it always occur to me how useless I would be if I were to be dropped into one of them tomorrow. Not because their lives seem so "hard," but because they have vast swaths of knowledge that I simply don't, as a Westerner. These people have hundreds of plant names in their head, all with associated uses and dangers. They know how to make surprisingly devastating weapons by hand. Build their own houses in less than 2 hours. Climb 60 feet in the air in under 2 minutes. I can't do any of those things. They're so good at what they do that, in fact, they work fewer hours in a day than most Westerners do.

Our societies use totally different skill sets. My skill set isn't useful to them, nor is theirs useful to me.

Just because they don't care about fancy underwear and firearms doesn't mean they're not "evolved." And in terms of evolution, which let's keep in mind is a long-term game, they're more likely to survive than we are. They understand that the environment has a finite ability to support them and they need to stay within that boundary -- something we tend to forget a lot. Lots of societies have perished for having the mindset we do.

That's what I'm saying; no one knows how things would have gone if America simply didn't exist. So for you to claim America's non-existence would lead to worldwide fascism is ridiculous.

But what I'm saying is that there was no inherent reason things between European settlers and Natives even had to come to a head in the first place. There was plenty of space, and some of our favorite places to be are places the Natives didn't even want. It was senseless, and born of a total lack of humanity on the part of the settlers.
 
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