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Not Guilty

Entry 2006, on 2019-10-08 at 19:42:30 (Rating 5, Politics)

As a white male of European descent and living in a prosperous western nation, is there anything I should guilty about? Should I regret the colonial past of my ancestors? Should I feel shame for the fact that other ethnic groups aren't doing as well in society as I am?

Well, many people - even those who share my auspicious circumstances - would say yes. But I'm not so sure. In fact, my response to this issue at this point is wavering between "no" and "Hell, no"!

This subject is particularly relevant at the moment, because modern Western countries which now exist after a colonial past seem to be suffering from an attitude of self-loathing, of regret for bad events from the past, and from an apparent need to apologise for succeeding more than some others.

At the same time there is a backlash against this attitude, because while the ideas I described above are ones which are often portrayed by most mainstream media, many governments, and a noisy fraction of the general population, I really don't think they are as widely accepted as might be assumed. The backlash against political correctness of this type should be obvious for all to see - except it isn't for many who continue to enjoy the social justice echo chamber where these views are encouraged.

Here in New Zealand recently the British High Commissioner Laura Clarke said her government "regretted" the death of some Maori people 250 years ago after an altercation with Captain James Cook's crew. In most cases Cook was a quite fair person when it came to his treatment of native people, and the incident seems to have been the result of a misunderstanding, or maybe an over-reaction to the aggressive actions of a Maori war party.

And, I guess it was regrettable, because people were killed unnecessarily, but if we are going to go back hundreds of years looking for things to regret, let's make sure we look at all sides of these conflicts fairly.

For example, in another violent incident involving Cook and a native group, 10 of Cook's men were attacked, killed, and later eaten by a group of Maori. Here's a description of the event...

"On December 17, 1773, Jack Rowe led an expedition ashore to collect food. They never came back. The men waited for them, growing more and more worried as time passed. In the morning, a second group led by James Burney went ashore to find them.

Soon, they found a Maori canoe and the remains of what they hoped was a dog. When Burney came in for a closer look, though, he found a human hand among the torn flesh. It was tattooed "TH" - the initials of Thomas Hill, one of the men who had gone ashore.

Burney and his men ran for their lives. When they made it to the beach, hundreds of Maori ran out to taunt them. Burney looked back. The Maori were roasting the pieces of Rowe’s dismembered body over a fire. They were devouring the flesh of Rowe and his men and feeding their entrails to the dogs."

So, when are we going to get an apology, or even an expression of regret for that revolting act? Note that this was a deliberate act of murder and cannibalism, and is orders of magnitude worse than anything Cook did. Do we get any indication of regret? No, according to standard politically correct doctrine, there's no need.

In fact, Maori have always been aggressive and violent. The first contact between Dutch explorer Abel Tasman and Maori lead to the following events...

"Maori canoes came out toward the boats again. Tasman’s men figured it was a friendly gesture, inviting them to come to shore - until the Maori started ramming their boats. One Maori clubbed a sailor in the back of the head with a pike and knocked him overboard. Then the others attacked - and killed four men before Tasman's men could get away."

Do we have an apology for this? Again, apparently not.

After the first event, on the next time Cook visited the area, some of the crew wanted to revenge the horrific deaths of their crew-mates. But Cook didn't allow that to happen, because unlike the natives, he was a civilised, forgiving, and decent person.

I was recently debating this subject on Twitter and my opponent mentioned the incident where Cook's men killed some of that war party. I said, sure that's unfortunate, but far worse things happened, and I mentioned the incident of murder and cannibalism. The other person just posted back "that didn't happen LOL". So, I sent her the link to the incident on the NZ government history web site. She never posted back on that one.

But this shows just how insidious this anti-Western propaganda campaign - which starts at the highest levels of government - really is. People are so ridiculously naive that they really do believe the myth of the "noble savage". They really believe that the Western invaders were the cause of all the problems, and the native population were blameless. It's not just pathetic, it's dangerous.

So should I feel guilty for my ancestors' past actions? Well, no, not really. Sure they could have done better, but I think most were good people. The native people though? Maybe they have a little bit more to be ashamed of!

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Comment 1 (5090) by Anonymous on 2019-10-14 at 11:34:24:

I wondered when somebody would bring the subject of the deaths of Tasman's and Cook's crews at the hand of the Maoris. I was really surprised that a representative of the UK Government even felt they owed an apology to the Maori.

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Comment 2 (5091) by OJB on 2019-10-15 at 08:37:35:

There were regrettable actions on both sides, but according to many reports, the Maori were far worse than the Europeans. Yet, it’s the Maori who get the expression of regret? How to explain this... political correctness gone mad, maybe?

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