Was a more humane Native American policy possible for the US?

Mar 2014
1,851
Lithuania
#21
Now, we think bison meat is some kind of super lean, healthy meat; the production is too low.....
As far as I know production of bison meat would not matter, problem is that bison cannot be domesticated. At least we haven't managed it so far. Even bison and cattle hybrids provide very good meat but they have fertility problems. Overall, there is a lot of possibilities with bison if it ever will be truly domesticated.
 
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Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
4,895
Portugal
#22
In the scope of history, the US was actually rather generous and kind as expansionist peoples go. The Franks did not offer the Gauls a reservation, nor government support when they swept thru the valley of the Seine.
Are you comparing two conquests more than a thousand years apart, with different social prevailing mentalities, to prove that the US were “generous”?

I surely agree with you when you state that the indigenous were not pacific tribes.

But “The Franks did not offer the Gauls a reservation”? Really!? Why should they offer it? After the carnage of any conquest the conquerors and the conquested ones co-existed in the same space. And they weren’t that much different. The Franks became romanized has many of the Gauls already were by that time. In this case the conquerors became culturally conquered. The analogy was badly chosen. Probably it is best to compare with reserves in other countries for the same time period, or with the later Batustans created by South Africa.

The US Americans and the indigenous tribes were completely different in cultural terms, in civilizational and technological terms. Maybe this was why the idea of reservations appeared, to maintain them apart, not because of some kind of apparent generosity.
 
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Aug 2018
278
Southern Indiana
#23
The natives were not peaceful hippies camping in the wilds.
They, themselves were warlike, expansionist, and intolerant of their enemies continuing existence.



Every tribe ever encountered had Warriors.
Most tribes had WON the land on which they lived thru violence against other native peoples.

There was no way on earth they were Not going to fight to keep it.
The Iroquois League are another great example. They were the first powerful confederation of tribes to aquire guns from the Dutch and English and they used them to make war on every tribe from Canada to the Ohio River and as far west as Illinois. These were called The Beaver Wars and lasted from about 1640 to 1680,. They displaced numerous tribes and eradicted at least two tribes completely. The Iroquois considered these other tribes conquered people and even sold their land to the whites under the "right of conquest".
 
Oct 2009
3,435
San Diego
#24
Are you comparing two conquests more than a thousand years apart, with different social prevailing mentalities, to prove that the US were “generous”?

I surely agree with you when you state that the indigenous were not pacific tribes.

But “The Franks did not offer the Gauls a reservation”? Really!? Why should they offer it? After the carnage of any conquest the conquerors and the conquested ones co-existed in the same space. And they weren’t that much different. The Franks became romanized has many of the Gauls already were by that time. In this case the conquerors became culturally conquered. The analogy was badly chosen. Probably it is best to compare with reserves in other countries for the same time period, or with the later Batustans created by South Africa.

The US Americans and the indigenous tribes were completely different in cultural terms, in civilizational and technological terms. Maybe this was why the idea of reservations appeared, to maintain them apart, not because of some kind of apparent generosity.
I disagree. Red Cloud, the only plains indian ever to win a war against the US, boasted he would kill all the whites who came to his land. When told they would only send more whites, he said the Sioux would kill as many as they sent. but then, after he won, he traveled back to the east- to new york and washington DC as part of a native delegation. Once he SAW with his own eyes what western civilization was like, and the SEA of farms and villages and cities that took DAYS to cross by train, he realized what was to become of his people in any further conflict. He became a minor celebrity, touring eastern cities and giving impassioned speeches about the plight of his poor people... and he did so because everywhere he went he could sense the sympathy for the Native American plight that US citizens largely felt.

UNLIKE prior usurpations of one people by another- and unlike those perpetrated BY native tribes on other native tribes, there was an ongoing conversation in the US about the mistreatment of Native Americans, and the notion that they were fighting for their rights.
Even after Custer was massacred... Sitting Bull could Tour with Buffalo Bill and get standing ovations from the crowd because HALF of all Americans thought custer had it coming.

The people of the US largely felt a sympathy with the Natives... albeit a paternalistic one in which they also felt the need to "save" them from being heathens.


I never said the Franks SHOULD have offered the Gauls some form of co-existence.... I simply pointed out that they DIDN'T. And neither did any other group of people that coveted the land held by others.

The US treatment of Native Americans was UNIQUE in the history of cultural usurpation. Clearly, the US was NOT intent on eradication.
 
Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
#25
I think the massive killing off of the buffalo in the U.S. put the native Americans in an untenable situation. For me, that is almost as sad as the mal-treatment of the natives themselves.

Indeed. At least the nomadic tribes of Plains Indians. What about the remaining hundreds of tribes not reliant on the buffalo? I'm not being snippy, I really want to know.

What about the differences between the US and Canada in treatment of indigenous people? EG as far as I know, Canada did not have the stunning humbug of 'manifest destiny"


LINK to a list of recognised tribes. I was stunned at the numbers

List of federally recognized tribes - Wikipedia
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
4,895
Portugal
#26
I never said the Franks SHOULD have offered the Gauls some form of co-existence.... I simply pointed out that they DIDN'T. And neither did any other group of people that coveted the land held by others.
My point was that the situations were hardly comparable. And that the Gauls, or better the Roman-Gauls and the Franks co-existed. The Roman-Gauls weren’t all butchered. They co-existed with the conquers and formed a new society. In time the conquerors, the Franks, even begun to speak a Latin language.

The US treatment of Native Americans was UNIQUE in the history of cultural usurpation. Clearly, the US was NOT intent on eradication.
There are more reserves in America besides the USA. Brasil has indigenous reserves and I think that there are more countries in America with reserves.
 
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Oct 2009
3,435
San Diego
#27
My point was that the situations were hardly comparable. And that the Gauls, or better the Roman-Gauls and the Franks co-existed. The Roman-Gauls weren’t all butchered. They co-existed with the conquers and formed a new society. In time the conquerors, the Franks, even begun to speak a Latin language.



There are more reserves in America besides the USA. Brasil has indigenous reserves and I think that there are more countries in America with reserves.
Yes- AFTER the US demonstrated an alternative to eradicating, or subsuming a culture. The US treatment of Native Americans- whom they could have EASILY eradicated- was unprecedented.

And My point was also that they are incomparable. The OP implied that US treatment of Native Americans was no different than prior usurpations in history.
 
Oct 2009
3,435
San Diego
#28
As far as I know production of bison meat would not matter, problem is that bison cannot be domesticated. At least we haven't managed it so far. Even bison and cattle hybrids provide very good meat but they have fertility problems. Overall, there is a lot of possibilities with bison if it ever will be truly domesticated.
it is a myth that Whites destroyed the Buffalo herds.

Prior to europeans bringing the horse- no native peoples lived ON the great plains. Water and other food sources were too scarce and Native peoples, traveling on foot, could not have kept up with migrating herds of buffalo. Natives were relegated to living around the fringe of the plains and stampeding buffalo off bluffs and other mass kills whenever the herds happened by.

Most large animals populations were kept well in check by native predation- but the plains were impossible to survive on, and that is How the buffalo became such a massive monoculture.

The Horse changed all that. The horse enabled native americans to hunt on the plains and survive on the plains. And they did, The sioux and cheyenne and comanche and others all swept out into the plains and the result was an explosion in food and buffalo resources such as lodgeskins that resulted in a population boom. The Lakota went from a tribe of perhaps 10,000 to nearly 100,000 in just a few generations.

And this meant they hunted more buffalo. No matter how much Native believed in living in harmony with the land, they did not have the means to so much as Measure the effect they were having.

The buffalo herds were culled almost in half between the 1820s and the 1860's when whites first started encroaching onto the plains in serious numbers.

Certainly, US hunting that began in earnest in the 1970s added to the speed of the decline... but the native americans, themselves, were very effectively decimating the herds all on their own thru the new hunting technology of the horse.

Native Americans had hunted to extinction the Original horse- that evolved in North America- they hunted to extinction the giant sloth, the giant elk, the mastodon, and every other sizable animal in north america.
 
Jan 2019
220
London, United Kingdom
#29
Yes, absolutely. Not all lands were occupied by the natives when European settlers arrived. If they just settled far away from any Native Tribes, there would be no war nor genocide at all. Natives were pretty friendly to European settlers when they first arrived. Remember why people in US and Canada celebrate Thanksgiving Day?
 
Aug 2018
278
Southern Indiana
#30
The first Thanksgiving stemmed from the massacre of Pequot people in 1637 and there is no evidence that natives were ever invited to "Thanksgiving", that's just stories they taught you as a kid.