Pardon me, but......

Syndicate content
A serious place for some serious discussion
Updated: 1 min 40 sec ago

Can We Nooksack the Inupiaq?

Mon, 10/09/2017 - 21:22

While celebrating Columbus (https://www.thenation.com/article/the-invention-of-christopher-columbus-american-hero/) is as ludicrous as basing jurisprudence on Story’s Commentaries (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/inventing-a-christian-america-9780190230975), jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire is perhaps just as silly. Pushing tribal politics until we all look like Nooksackis (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/18/magazine/who-decides-who-counts-as-native-american.html) is perhaps a quantum too far.

One has to ask, who exactly are Alaska’s second peoples? There is some discussion as to whether Inupiaq (and their cousins to the East) are Alaska’s second or third peoples coming as they did rather later – some 20000 years after the first descendants of the Altaians made it from Asia (see for a general discussion http://www.pnas.org./content/113/23/6380.full), and of course, as there was no Alaska at the time, a broadening of the target brings to mind that there is evidence that Europeans made it to North America at least by 1500 ya – why not before the Inupiaq? And, of course, the purported lack of archeological evidence of humans in the Americas prior to 30000 ya is NOT evidence that there were NOT peoples here at the time. Lions and tigers and bears – don’t tell me we may have to drop someone’s cap N!?!?!?!?!

Every attempt at argument over who was there first ends up in finger-pointing and blood-letting and is, at its core, a version of “me, mine, and more”. We came down out of the trees just several hundred thousand years ago, and have been torturing each other since. We appear to have all come from what we now call Africa. The time that has passed since then is just the blink of an eye.

Categories: Commentary

The Thin Men

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 09:32

I think attenuated may be the right word. Disconnected seems too binary, and it’s not so much an on and off thing. It’s more like fading out. That’s what old people do, you know; they kind of fade out, and pretty quick, they’re gone.
I have been trying to find the right words, on and off, for some time. It is a slippery slope there. I suppose one could even suggest treacherous, at the risk of being melodramatic.
I am struck (stuck?) with attenuated. It conveys the very real sense that one’s connection is narrowing, thinning to an impossible dimension that is not sustainable.
There is, of course, the sense that one’s impact on the rest of the world is gone. No one seems to listen; no one seems to hear. You seem always in someone’s way as if you are indeed invisible.
But there is also the feeling of becoming further and further removed. Fading away is as close as I can describe it. Things become less meaningful, unimportant, trivial even. You can easily see events without you. You don’t seem to be involved, and frankly that doesn’t seem a big deal.
Unfortunately or otherwise, those prone to depression are likely to react poorly to these perceptions and may start feeling an accelerated pull. The tension of the attenuation becoming just too great, there is a rising urge to just let go.
Imagine that you are bungie jumping, and at some point it occurs to you that the cord no longer has the capacity to return.

Categories: Commentary

This communication was paid for by Marc Grober, 5610 Radcliff Dr. Anchorage, AK 99504