Narcissus and Narcissism

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Re: Narcissus and Narcissism

Post by Orwell on Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:46 pm

I have the impression that your folk had a vaster population than ours. Were they nomadic? Or were their villages permanent? I think you've told me already, but I've forgotten (it's an old people thing!), but what tribe were your locals? The locals to my area were the Dja Dja Wurrung. I'm gradually learning more about them, but I fear there won't be much to be found in our European records. I struck up an instant rapport with an Aboriginal lady* - I think of that tribe - from a Women's Refuge Service when I was in our Family Violence section. I'm about to begin a new job in Crime Prevention, and plan to try and work better with our locals in that area, and catching up might be an entry point, I hope, into finding out how they view their problems - and what they think their problems are - but also to learn more of their history from their own lips. It's something that's been simmering away in me for years. Great if I can make it part of what I do as a cop.

Funny how you see things as new information arrives. Thinking about the European arrival in Australia, and the 'possessing' of the land, it is kind of obvious to me, looking from today's viewpoint, that the land was stolen from Aboriginals. To a cop that should be more than obvious, but I don't think most cops (or Europeans generally) see it that way. The Truth, however, is the Truth.

People like me are often accused of belonging to the "Black Armband Brigade" of history, i.e. that folk who want to talk about past injustices comitted by our forefathers are crippled by a feeling of unjustified shame and self-blame. It wasn't us, so why feel shame or need to apologize!? I don't feel ashamed and I don't plan to apologize. I didn't steal Aboriginal Australia and disposses, murder and rape, and later, steal, their children. I do, however, believe that the Truth should (nearly always!) be outed. Knowing the Truth - or searching for it - can only 'improve' us as human beings, surely?

I also think, as we Europeans got the place for nothing, we should at least offer reasonable redress, and in our Constitution maybe even - God forbid! - acknowledge the Aboriginals as being the First Australians. Many oppose any Constitutional change to include recognition of prior possession of Australia by Aboriginals. Why? It makes me wonder if those who oppose any of this "Black Armband" redress/apology talk are themselves deep down, ashamed, because they fear (know?) what will be found if we're too investigative and open about our national past. I mean to say, I fear that by them claiming descent fron iconic (heroic?) First Colonists, it makes them feel 'responsible for' and 'included in' their 'success' in a way. They are proud of themselves because they come from a proud (blameless?) race and proudly claim connection. They congratulate the First Europeans, and thank them for their efforts. We can thank past Europeans for Founding our great nation, but we can't apologize to Aboriginals for what was done to them then (and ever since, actually). It's kind of ironic, what. Maybe it's just me getting it all wrong.  Shrugging

Better get down from my soapbox now. Don't want to sound pompous or narcissistic. Embarassed


*"Aboriginal lady" --- My God that sounds formal! We tend to flirt disgracefully whenever we see each other or talk over the phone! Terrible business and not like me at all!  Embarassed

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"Skirts!" cried our respectable Master Odo. "Skirts! And they have the temerity to call them 'kilts'.... Eru darn my socks!"

From "The True Tale of the Un-magical Coal Scuttle."
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Re: Narcissus and Narcissism

Post by David H on Fri Oct 18, 2013 4:40 pm

I have the impression that your folk had a vaster population than ours. Were they nomadic? Or were their villages permanent? I think you've told me already, but I've forgotten (it's an old people thing!), but what tribe were your locals?
They usually had a permanent winter village, then temporary summer camps near the various harvest sites. The Chinook were the large trading culture which dominated my part of the coast, with the Nuul-Cha-Nulth (Nootka) to the north.

Here's a description from Capt WilliamSturgis, one of the Boston fur traders from the early 1800's:

Their dwellings are of a most permanent character than those of the Indians in the interior. In the Winter Villages some of the houses are quite large, covered with boards and probably as comfortable as the houses in London and Paris are represented to have been five centuries ago.I have seen houses upon the southern part of the Coast more than one hundred feet in length and forty in breadth.


...and his description of Indian government which came to mind recently with all the @#$% coming out of Washington recently:

A comparison of the Indian Council-House, with our halls of deliberation and legislation, especially withe the Representatives Hall in Washington, is vastly in favor of the former and it has often occurred to me, when reading the frequent accounts of disgraceful proceedings in the National Capitol, that if , instead of holding two sessions, the members of each successive Congress could be sent to pass the time of one session (the long one) in the Far West, subjected to the wholesome discipline of the Indian Council, the public interest would not suffer, and some of the members could scarcely fail to be improved in both morals and manners.

The effect of such intercourse upon the character of the Indians may be more questionable.
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Re: Narcissus and Narcissism

Post by leelee on Fri Oct 18, 2013 11:21 pm

That is so fascinating and heartbreaking . I watched the film about how the aboriginal people in Australia suffered and this fence was put up. And this one family, how the one girl escaped and went all that way home only to be caught and her life ruined. I cried non stop for two days.
Here in Canada at one time the aboriginal Indian all Nations, were one day violated and the government just took their children, eating, giving bedtime stories, etc, and they adopted them out to white people. And that was that. They were beaten if they spoke their tongues and had all their hair cut . I had a friend Peggy and she was adopted out to very wealthy people. But all her life she grieved for all the siblings as well as the parents. She became so angry even though she married a well spoken kind white man and had three beautiful children. Her soul was wounded and she was angry.
I was taken from my Jewish mother and it was a nightmare until I left to start my own life at sixteen. And Hasia, when she was abandoned was almost taken away, she is Jewish and part Okanagan Indian. Mans inhumanity against his own kind. I made sure my children went to the Indian Friendship Centre, Celtic Drumming, learned Chinese and Japanese as we can and cook Indian Russian, Chinese, Japanese, American, Canadian, Aboriginal and so on. I want them to love the best of each culture and realize there are evil and good in each.
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Re: Narcissus and Narcissism

Post by Orwell on Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:35 am

Thanks guys. Will reply more fully soon.

Been down at a First Peoples exhibition in Melbourne today. More food for thought. A new book to read. Quickly checked Chinook and Nuul-Cha-Nulth (Nootka) on Wikepedia. Our James Cook met the latter in 1778 (the year Australia was Invaded!) He met Australian Aboriginals for the first time in 1770. He even sailed into Port Phillip Bay (from memory). I'm not sure if he saw any of our Kulin Nation. Small world. Dave - you and I are almost related! Well... kinda.... (Spooky! I once wore a beard too!Shocked ) I suspect you must live very close to the border with those Canadian hobbits. This business gets more interesting by the minute. (Unfortunately, while there was much positive stuff at the exhibition, the depraved behaviour of many of the First Europeans was brought into even sharper focus too!)

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"Skirts!" cried our respectable Master Odo. "Skirts! And they have the temerity to call them 'kilts'.... Eru darn my socks!"

From "The True Tale of the Un-magical Coal Scuttle."
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