This in speaking about the “misconception” that the plains nations
actually relied more on hunting than “farming”. A friend sent me a
link to one of Russell’s latest media events and was good hearted
enough to tell me the time mark where it occurred so I wouldn’t have
to suffer through the entire thing-if this absurd statement is indicative
I’m grateful for the consideration.
So now following on the heels of the movie 300 and Russell’s announcement
that there were only 300 warriors at the Big Horn, and his claim that
no evidence of pre-Colombian warfare can be found, and that the human
sacrifices were actually open heart surgery performed on a such a scale
every surgeon and hospital must be envious, we are now disabused of the
belief that the plains nations hunted and gathered rather than sowed and
The basis for this lesson we are now being taught is that as the plains nations
didn’t have refrigerators they relied, if not predominantly, then at least
equally on farming-apparently no consideration is given to the fact that the
advent of refrigerators is equivalent to a eye blink in time in comparison to
man’s presence on the earth- no doubt that is yet another fact to be revised or
ignored-or maybe there were only three hundred to go around.
Another time marked statement was that there was no written record
by the nations and so all was recorded in oral traditions. Oral traditions
are indeed a large part of the record, but I submit that a written
record exists in every petroglyph, every winter count and among the
syllabary of the Cherokees.
No written records seems an oversimplification and a dismissal of any nations efforts to record their beliefs and history.
I submit that among those who developed and excelled in the art of pottery making, basket weaving, and even the making or rugs, there exists a written record in their work-that the
design and symbology were something more than decoration.
For any who have seen the Hopi petrogylphs they are surely aware that the actual design is spartan, but when “read” it is a lengthy process, and to discount them as something other than writing speaks not to fact but to a lack of understanding, even fluency.
It is well known that as early as the 1830’s the Kiowa were recording in a calendrical manner both summer and winter events. That is a written record by definition, and there exists among other nations winter counts and even wampum that predate these.
What is either ignored or dismissed is that on the hunt large numbers of buffalo were taken, more than could be consumed at the moment. In this no refrigerators there is an implication that to have done so much would have been left to rot upon the plains in the same way the hide hunters did.
Nothing could be further from the truth as all the nations were well acquainted in the preservation of meat in spite of the fact that they didn’t have a refrigeration process. It was an essential survival skill, an act of preparation for the lean times of winter, and also lent itself to mobility.
Not to mention that the entire world was lacking in refrigeration and likewise were skilled in preservation. To attempt to advance farming as a viability for a people is neither original or ground breaking, for those who were not actively engaged in it, like the plains nations, it began with the treaties and round ups, but to attempt to revise history in doing so in another.
It would have been a great thing had all the nations had an “alphabet” and there existed books going back for thousands of years-unfortunately that isn’t the case, and so often times we are left with revisions and personal takes that conflict not only with what is known but those very oral traditions as well.
Even in written records they must be examined carefully, for just as accounts can be orally revised so to what is written-as has been the way of it with all the revision and attempts to obscure, to rewrite the history and facts of events surrounding Annie Mae by the AIM leadership-easier to deny having said a thing than to deny what one has personally written or had another transcribe either materially or ethereally on the net.
The oral tradition they attempted to create about themselves and about Annie Mae amounts to little more than vagrant graffiti and is not only profane, but lacking in value as well.Those caught up in this surely must wish they only had to contend with the oral tradition.
While written records are not abundant it was a course willingly followed by AIM and it’s leadership in the case of Annie Mae, that is the benchmark of propaganda. What was written by them has proven to be lies and it must be to their dismay that the record being written now in court documents, testimony, and convictions is neither obscure, secret, or exists only in an oral tradition.
I mentioned this to a nine year old child and they thought the refrigerator reference was funny and asked if it were a joke, I replied that indeed it was whether intended or not, they wanted to know who made it. When I told them they had no idea who I was talking about, I find that encouraging, and a good sign.