“As you know,” Lisa Manly began, “today, for a very long time, has been known as Columbus Day. But time has changed who we admire and whose deeds we have learned to appreciate. For a great many people, including those members of America’s first nation, today is Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Here at WBBN news we’ve reached out to the University of Wisconsin’s President of Native American studies, Doctor Phillip Horn to elaborate on the importance of this particular day, and why we really can’t think of it as a holiday celebrated by people of European ancestry. Thank you for joining us, Dr. Horn.”
“My pleasure, Lisa. Thank you for having me,” Horn said.
“Dr. Horn, as the head of Native American studies at the UW you must be pleased with this change from celebrating today as Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples’ Day.”
“Oh, no, actually I’m quite against it, Lisa. Despite my long tenure teaching Native American studies, when you compare the accomplishments of the Europeans, even starting early with Columbus, with those of the Native Americans, the Europeans have it, hands down. Really, as you look back on the historical record, you can’t come to any other conclusion that the Indians, or Native Americans as we now call them, were nothing more than savage, superstitious, violent monsters. And you know, it’s kind of ironic, but referring to them as indigenous is really inaccurate because they were not indigenous to North America. They came from Asia, over the Bering Land Bridge.”
“I’m sorry, what did you say?
“They’re not really indigenous.”
“No, before that.”
“The monster part. What are you trying to say?”
“Oh, yes, they were awful. A terrible race. Before we arrived and they started killing us, their favorite hobby was killing each other. You know, a lot of people today think of the Indians as basket-weaving hippies sitting around a campfire discussing Confucius. They weren’t like that at all, actually. No, they were a frightful lot. Certainly the Europeans dealt with them in a much more Christian manner than they dealt with us.”
“I’m sorry, Dr. Horn, I have to stop you right there.”
“You know I was watching this PBS documentary by Ken Burns—ah, now there’s an apologetic left-wing retard if there ever was one—and this one Lakota woman—I don’t know what her name is, she’s the current Native American poet laureate of Oklahoma or something, said, ‘When the Hoopites were coming, the Shimmy Shammies sent their grandmothers to fight them—”
“Those aren’t actual Native American tribes.”
“and when the Hoogahops were coming, the Shimmy Shammies gathered little rocks to fend them off. But when the Lakota were coming, the Shimmy Shammies chanted their death song. For everyone knew the Lakotas were great warriors.’ And I thought to myself, ‘And you’re proud of that?’ The Lakotas were the most foul of the plains Indians. They murdered everybody. They complain about us stealing the Black Hills from them, but they stole it from somebody else. Europeans used to get letters back in the nineteenth century from all the other Indians in America saying, ‘Would you please come over and do something about these people because they’re complete assholes.’”
“Dr. Horn, if I may—”
“But in reality they were all pretty much fuckers. Basically the way this went is we would make peace with some chief, but then all the teenagers of the tribe would run amok and go off murdering settlers. I remember Chief Joseph saying, ‘I want to keep the peace, but I can’t keep my young men at home.’ This was a euphemism for saying ‘I can’t keep my young men from murdering people.’ You know, getting back to this idiot woman I was just talking about, if European America wants to rid itself of this derogatory concept that we did terrible things to the Native Americans, all we need to do is just say we have a ‘warrior culture.’ That seems to be an okay thing.”
“Dr. Horn, you’re on television speaking to millions of people. Do you not have any idea what you’re saying?”
“Of course I do. And look what they did to Olive Oatman. Hey, nice chin tattoo, Olive! This after they murdered her entire family. The list goes on. Lewis and Clark would have been murdered had not Sacajawea intervened. Animals. They were all animals. Except maybe Squanto and Sacajawea. The Europeans would have been justified in annihilating all of them. Perhaps the Indians learned that a little more hospitality would have suited them better, but I doubt it.”
“You know, Leland Stanford once said, and this was just the other day, as he was trying to build the transcontinental railroad, that if the bleeding hearts out in the east could see what the Indians actually do, they wouldn’t be so supportive of them.”
“Leland Stanford. Governor of California 1862-1863.”
“What do you mean, he said it the other day?”
“Just what I said, the other day. See, I went back in my time machine to get a first-hand glimpse of what was going on there. Granted, you can get a good glimpse of what was going on by reading things written at the time—at least books and things that were written prior to 1980—but I wanted to get a first-hand look at what was happening, just so I could be sure.”
“So, you went there in your time machine?”
“Indeed I did. It’s actually a DeLorean Motor Car. It’s sharp. It’s stainless steel, you know.”
“That’s the movie Back to the Future.”
“I don’t know what that means.”
“I want to thank you, Dr. Horn, for taking time out to visit us this evening. To our viewers I wish to apologize. I also wish to express that I do not believe that white people have a warrior culture, because that would be wrong, but if any of our viewers are in a warrior culture, that’s perfectly fine. Good night and good news.”
Rika was attacked on the street today. This for the purpose of stealing her phone. It was afternoon. She was walking down the street talking on it. Some humanoid came up and grabbed it. She resisted. He (it’s always a he) said, “Give me the phone, bitch!” She in turn screamed, then delivered a Tom Dempsey 63-yard field goal attempt to his knee, which was good for three points and the game, causing the perp to hobble off with the taste of The Agony of Defeat in his mouth. I have to say I’ve developed a soft spot in my heart for women with a go mode lever to their adrenalin.
Not to drift from the point, but this word “bitch” has become a promiscuous terminology I hear around me. It’s unpleasant when directed forcibly to a woman, but now males have taken to directing it to other males as well. I think the idea here is to not only imply disdain or disapproval, but to emasculate. This seems to be something the lower order does. They even do it on live TV. I was watching a music awards show and one nominee, a woman, for no apparent reason, called the female presenter of the award a bitch. And no one comments. America is said to be the greatest country in the world, but I can think of twenty countries off the top of my head where I’d rather be. Just about anywhere is more civilized than here. I’m reminded of Sidney Greenstreet in Mask of Demetrius, walking down the staircase, holding his side after he’d just been shot, and saying, “There’s not enough kindness in the world.” Not this world, anyway. Not America World.
The other thing about this and all similar incidents is what they call it here. They call it a mugging. I think that’s an adorable word. Rather than say it’s an act of violence, they say mugging. When I hear the word mugging, I imagine someone being accosted in public by a stuffed toy unicorn armed with a pencil eraser demanding the person’s loose change. I mean, it’s a criminal act, but it’s kind of cute too. And how often do you get to see a stuffed toy unicorn, especially one that talks? Another term they have here is robbery gone wrong. This is when a person wants to do nothing more than take something from another person, which apparently is fine, and the person with the desired thing ends up getting killed. Now, this is way different than a murder, because with a murder the criminal intended to kill the person, but with a robbery gone wrong, it was more of an oops situation—most often caused by the robbery victim raising an objection, wherein the fault lies. Kind of the same thing with what’s called a hate crime. See, if you kill someone because you have a prejudice against them, that’s bad. But if you kill someone just because they were your random victim for the day, that’s not nearly as bad.
Anyway, Rory came by and I heard Rika retell the story.
“Why didn’t you just give him the phone!” he yelled. “Are you trying to get killed? You don’t fight over it—it’s just a phone.”
She protested that it was her phone and no one should be allowed to take it. I felt this a sound argument.
“You shouldn’t be just walking on the street alone talking on your phone,” he continued. “You’re just tempting some asshole to take it.”
The logic of this struck me as strained. But it did seem an argument presented by someone who wished not to be invaded by the pain of another. Therefore, fault was laid with her, so that he could be freed from the feeling of pain caused by empathy. I think he has an on/off switch on his neck, right next to the pull ring, that allows him to empathize when it’s convenient, painless, but then not do so when it has the potential of hurting. I find him not unique.
That’s another issue, though. My focus is on the primary issue and the primary issue upsets me greatly. It upsets me that she had to endure it, and it upsets me that this seems to be the norm here. A long time ago there used to be a place in America called “The Wild West.” While some people think this is a reference to a bygone era, it’s not. It’s still the Wild West here.
I’ve noted above that these crimes are always carried out by a man. Women generally don’t go in for this sort of thing. I have to tip my hat to them for that. Earth females are far less violent than their male counterparts. The males here do have a propensity for criminal violence and jobs that provide them an outlet for killing people legally with grenade launchers. Woman generally do not. However, it should be noted that women tend to stand on the sidelines and cheerlead, pom-poms swishing, exalting their men-folk and encouraging their men folks’ less than savory endeavors with the promise of love, affection, admiration, and their goodies.
But I digress. While this abhorrent incident with Rika is not the initial impetus for my most recent curious interest, it nonetheless now spurs it forward in an accelerated manner. This would be the study of guns.
I find guns fascinating in that they are a marvel of nineteenth century engineering. At the same time, I find them repellent, to the point of wishing they didn’t exist, given their sole purpose. That said, I find the credo of “It’s better to have a gun and not need it than to need one and not have it” bouncing about my confused head.
In assessing this dilemma, I think you can be one of two things. And therein lies the problem. You can either be a person, or you can be a person who carries a gun. The latter is fraught with psychological limitations. The former is fraught with potentially dangerous naivete. I would prefer to be an entire person versus someone who permanently has the lead role in a James Bond movie, but then again, James Bond always seems to be the ideal with which to gravitate to given his highly advanced, always prepared, uber boy scout being.
When I go for walks around the block in the afternoon, I’m quite fine with being the happy-go-lucky, all embracing, life is whimsy, mime person. At night I get a little tense. And when I’ve had a few beers, or one too many, and walk around at night, I want to feel a 32-caliber Walther PPK in my pocket. Because it would be a comfort—and a most agreeable one at that. Imagining it as being reality, I feel not the slightest psychological limitation. Together, all these sensations create a strange, fluctuating dynamic within, with each perspective competing for ultimate supremacy and sole presence.
Note: Walmart doesn’t sell 32 caliber ammunition. Don’t know what’s up with that. Apparently it’s gone out of fashion.
In assessing the role of uber boy scout, the ideal weapon needs to be small enough to fit in one’s pocket. This requires a short barrel. This has its drawbacks, however. One is that it’s lighter and so there’s more recoil (when you fire the weapon and it flies out of your hand, causing you to ask your assailant to hold momentarily while you retrieve it), and the other is that the explosion taking place in the cartridge—which needs to be aided by the barrel length—is unable to achieve its full potential given that the barrel is short. On the other hand, as indicated, nobody knows you have it. Which is sort of the point. Of course, if they did know you had it—because it’s the size of a canon—they’d not be inclined to fuck with you in the first place, but then you would get creepy looks from other people who know you have it, like the checkout person at Wendy’s, or the police, and who would be inclined to register an objection. Which can be a problem.
Then there’s the issue of choosing a semi-automatic pistol or a revolver. Semi-autos are quite fascinating in that there’s this entire factory of stuff going on inside the gun when you—being the idiot in charge of it—pull the trigger. They also look cool and feel like they’re a part of your actual hand, which is one reason you see them in movies all the time. They also can carry more bullets, which is good if you’re having a shootout with seven banditos as opposed to, like, five, with five rounds being the standard capacity of a small revolver (banditos might be racist, but you get the math. That was the point). I have, alas, come to the conclusion that having not been raised in Montana where semi-autos are considered a part of the place-setting at wedding dinners, given that everybody knows how to use it with the same degree of expertise as I might display with a fork, I would opt for the tried and true and trusty revolver. They’re bulky and far less cool, but I can actually grasp how they work. More or less. They also require the same amount of cleaning, care, and maintenance as a tire iron, so that’s a big selling point for me.
So, I’ve narrowed it down to the Ruger LCR and the Smith and Wesson 642. Neither of these have external hammers. This is good because when you pull them out of your coat pocket there’s nothing to get hung up. On the other hand, they look kind of weird because revolvers are supposed to have hammers. They remind me of mole rats that don’t have eyes. Also, you can’t point it at somebody and say, “I want you to back off now…real easy like,” and then when the other person doesn’t respond right away, you can click the hammer back and say, “I mean it!” And it goes ‘click’ and for some reason that causes people to suddenly respond to your request. So, there’s that. But you can compensate for that drawback—the lack of a hammer—by just pulling the gun out and shooting them without engaging in any conversation.
But I remain on the fence, in regard to all. Why?
“Alvin, I need a movie,” Rika said at his door.
“You got it,” Alvin replied, abruptly stopping his typing and looking back to her. “What are you in the mood for?”
“Something far away. Something with flying saucers. I want flying saucers.”
“I’m your guy, and your guide. Give me a sec.”
Alvin turned back to his computer.
I am not pleased. I am not pleased that my friend was hurt. I am not pleased.