Essence of the American spirit
It was a cold and snowy night in Boston, January 6, 1836. Ice-filled wagon tracks rutted Federal Street and icicles sparkled in the flickering light of the oil street lamps. Inside the Odeion Theater, a Methodist minister who insisted he was the great-great-grandson of a famous Indian chief told a story that was even colder.
It was about the essence of the American spirit, not the pretty picture publicists paint, but what really happened, and who white Christian Americans really are, and how they showed their gratitude to the people who saved their lives.
It pertains in particular today to all those innocent people around the world who are being unexpectedly bombed from above after showing nothing but goodwill to the merciless white Christians dropping the bombs.
The hot topic in 1836 was President Andrew Jackson's forced removal of Native Americans from everywhere east of the Mississippi River to anywhere west of it, one of many embarrassing episodes in American history that history books prefer to exclude. It was a decade-long event now known as the Trail of Tears that resulted in the deaths of about half the five major tribes relocated and the permanent banishment of the living to rock strewn deserts fit only for beasts.
At the height of America's first 'get rid of the Indians' campaign, the Rev. William Apes (1798-c. 1836?) — born of the Pequot tribe but raised by the Pilgrims — delivered his message four times in Boston theaters. History records he was never heard from again!
As his speech was fairly long, I will recap the high points (mostly low ones) for you.
In 1614, a man named Henry Harley kidnapped 30 natives from an island off Cape Cod, took them to London, and sold them as slaves.
"This inhuman act of the whites caused the Indians to be jealous forever afterwards, which the white man acknowledges upon the first pages of the history of his country," Apes said.
He told the story of an old Wampanoag woman, who tearfully confronted one Capt. Hunt for stealing three of her children. The whites told her they were bad men, but that they wouldn't hurt them, and gave her a few coins. Her sons were never seen again.
Rev. Apes demanded to know of the assembled Bostonians:
"Oh, white woman! What would you think if some foreign nation, unknown to you, should come and carry away your three lovely children, whom you had dandled on the knee, and at some future time you should behold them, and break forth in sorrow, with your heart broken, and merely ask, sirs, where are my little ones, and someone should reply, it was passion, great passion; what would you think of them?
"Should you not think they were beings made more like rocks than men?"
"Yet these same men came to these Indians for support, and acknowledge themselves that no people could be better used than they were; that their treatment would do honor to any nation; that their provisions were in abundance; that they gave them venison, and sold them many hogsheads of corn to fill their stores, besides beans. This was in the year 1622. Had it not been for this humane act of the Indians, every white man would have been swept from the New England colonies."
"In their sickness, too, the Indians were as tender to them as to their own children, and for all this, they were denounced as savages by those who had received all the acts of kindness they could possibly show them."
The good reverend set the scene. "December 1620 the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth, and without asking liberty from anyone, they possessed themselves of a portion of the country, and built themselves houses, and then made a treaty, and commanded (Indians) to accede to it.
"This, if now done, would be called an insult, and very white man would be called to go out and act the part of a patriot, to defend their country's rights; and if every intruder were butchered, it would be sung" (from the highest hill).
"And yet the Indians (though many were dissatisfied) — without the shedding of blood or imprisoning anyone — bore it. And yet for their kindness and resignation toward whites, they were called savages, and made by God on purpose for them to destroy.
"We might say God understood his work better than this."
Apes told of numerous other deceptions and insults highlighted by this one.
"Oh savage, where art thou, to weep over the Christian's crimes. Another act of humanity for Christians, as they call themselves, that one Capt. Standish, gathering some fruit and provisions, goes forward with a black and hypocritical heart, and pretends to prepare a feast for the Indians, and when they sit down to eat, they seize the Indians' knives hanging about their necks, and stab them to the heart. The white people call this stabbing, feasting the savages."
"They took one Wittumumet, the Chief's head, and put it upon a pole in their fort, and gave praise to their God . . . We wonder if these same Christians do not think it the command of God that they should lie, steal, and get drunk, commit fornication and adultery. The one is as consistent as the other."
Apes later mentioned the aforementioned Myles Standish as the leader of a group that raped and killed Indian women and children in the middle of the night.
"In 1647, the pilgrims speak of large and respectable tribes. But let us trace . . . how they were destroyed . . . By hypocritical proceedings, by being duped and flattered; flattered by informing them that their God was going to speak to them, and then placing them before the cannon's mouth in a line . . ."
The Rev. Apes called his great-great grandfather — King Philip of Mount Hope (a pristine island in the middle of Rhode Island's Narragansett Bay) — "the greatest man who ever lived upon the American shores."
Swindled out of most of what is now called southeastern Massachusetts, after a half century of duplicity and abuse from whites, King Philip finally declared war on the murderous white Christian Pilgrims with this speech:
"Brothers, you see this vast country before us, which the Great Spirit gave to our fathers and us; you see the buffalo and deer that are now our support. You see these little ones, our wives and children, who are looking to us for food and shelter; and you now see the foe before you, that they have grown insolent and bold; the treaties made by our fathers and us are broken; and all of us insulted; our council fires disregarded; and all the ancient customs of our fathers; our brothers murdered before our eyes, and their spirits cry to us for revenge.
"Brothers, these people from the unknown world will cut down our groves, spoil our hunting and planting grounds, drive us and our children from the graves of our fathers and our council fires, and enslave our women and children."
After the united indian resistance had burned my old hometown (Taunton) to the ground almost 300 years before I was born, King Philip made a miraculous escape from Pocasset swamp, regrouped on the Connecticut River, and drove the Pilgrims out of western Massachusetts for a time before returning to Mount Hope and his tribe of Wampanoags.
In 1675 the neighboring Narrangansetts were slaughtered, and shortly thereafter, King Philip was gunned down by one of his own who had been coopted by the whites. He was quartered and put on display by the aforementioned Capt. Hunt. His head was later displayed in Plymouth for 20 years.
Rev. Apes did not fail to mention the leading Christian theologian of his day, Dr. Increase Mather. " . . . the pious fathers wrestled long and hard with their God in prayer that He would prosper their arms and deliver their enemies. It was a common thing for the Pilgrims to curse the Indians, according to the orders of their priests.
"It is also wonderful how they prayed that they should put a bullet through an Indian's heart, and send their souls down into hell."
Apes concluded: "I do not hesitate to say that through the prayers, preaching and examples of those pretend pious (Christians) has been the foundation of all the slavery and degradation in the American Colonies toward colored people. Experience has taught me this has been a most sorry and wretched doctrine to us poor ignorant Indians."
From Jamestown to Sand Creek, Little Big Horn to Wounded Knee, right through the current abuse that keeps everything awarded to native Americans by the courts under the lock and key of federal jailers, everything white Christian Americans have done to the natives is utterly without excuse, reprehensible, deplorable, and above all, not to be emulated by anyone who considers themselves human.
Rev. Apes, who apparently disappeared after his succession of addresses in Boston in 1836, had it right. "He who says he loves God and hates his brother is a liar, and the truth is not in him."
He further said, "He who will advocate slavery is worse than a beast, is a being devoid of shame, and has gathered around him the most corrupt and debasing principles in the world . . . and he that will not set his face against its corrupt principles is a coward, and not worthy of being numbered among men and Christians."
Fast forward to the world today. Wedding parties bombed in Afghanistan. Families and children raped by American soldiers in Iraq. Americans living in fear of their own government. The tent residents of the Pashtun tribe know what I mean, as do beleaguered Third Worlders around the planet.
Americans make false promises to the world, which, in their own desperate hopes the world accepts at face value. These promises never come true, as with the treaties with the Indians. Every single one was broken.
We Americans are the descendants of those white Christians who slaughtered the very people who had saved their lives. Everyone in the world should know this, and act accordingly.
I don't support anyone who rapes babies, but most Americans, in their thoughtless comas, do. That's why they passed laws legalizing torture, with nary a peep from any of the churches.
Any religion that tells you it is the only true religion is bogus, and most of them do that. But the words of King Philip, and fate that befell him at the hands of pious Puritans, bespeak a truth of human behavior that is much more valid than anything written in some holy book.
You only need to look at episodes such as Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, the murder of Pat Tilley by his own comrades, and the general state of Native Americans today to see the true essence of the American spirit, guided ever so surely by white Christians who love Israel, curdled by bloodstains and lies as we rise to pledge allegiance to our flag.
John Kaminski is a writer who lives on the Gulf Coast of Florida preaching the message that no problem in the world can be authentically addressed without first analyzing tangents caused by Jewish perfidy, which has subverted and diminished every aspect of human endeavor throughout history. Support for his work is wholly derived from people who can understand what he’s saying and know what it means. It is your contributions that have kept him going this long. http://johnkaminski.info/ 250 N. McCall Rd. #2, Englewood FL 34223 USA