No one could put it more sincerely than Russell Means when he said Welcome To The American Reservation Prison Camp. Watch here on You Tube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aN9ssrVTkk8
Sadly, this video has less than half a million views. To set the tone for what I’m about to say let me demonstrate my argument. Just to be fair I just went down the list by typing in “political videos” and sticking to that first page. What I got was a mishmash of news clips and “the best of” videos that generally had less than 50k views. A little more popular was a Trump basher with over 2 million. Chal Dum, a music video from the film Dirty Politics had 29 million views. So I typed in “music videos” and the first on the list was Marshmello’s Happier with 442 million. Which, perhaps unscientifically, demonstrates one of Russell Mean’s points: we just want to be entertained.
For those of you unfamiliar with Mr. Means he is the founder of the American Indian Movement and instrumental in fighting for the Republic of Lakotah. He has been a street person, a drug dealer, actor, writer and has earned a degree in accounting and has his Ph.D in philosophy. He is highly intelligent and articulate and is hardly joking when he says “welcome to the reservation.”
Means claims that the American Constitution was partly based on the Iroquois Confederacy and, indeed, Ben Franklin made reference to the native model in his Plan of Union at the Albany Congress in 1754. Go here for further study and more articles on the subject: https://www.pbs.org/native-america/blogs/native-voices/how-the-iroquois-great-law-of-peace-shaped-us-democracy/
In this You Tube video he puts forth his views on everything from history to vaccinations and excoriates the laziness of modern American life. The basic message is we’ve gotten too far from local government and allowed ourselves to be herded into a centralized pasture where we contentedly graze on government grass as long as we get to spend our paychecks at Walmart and peck on cell phones and damned if he’s not right.
The basis of Native American belief is the circle. Life follows a circle from life to death. What you put into it is what you get out of it. Water circles the globe and sadly the American culture is circling a drain. And going down faster and faster.
Nearly a third of the laws passed by the 115th Congress were ceremonial, renaming courthouses and whatnot according to the Pew Research Center. Good grief. We allow these guys a huge salary (which they vote for themselves), retirement, limos and free helicopter rides. From 2004-2012 the net household worth of our congressmen saw a 1.55 median yearly increase while the average American’t was a .94 percent decrease. According to https://ballotpedia.org/Changes_in_Net_Worth_of_U.S._Senators_and_Representatives_(Personal_Gain_Index) Ballotpedia the majority of our elected officials are millionaires while half of us can’t “afford to spend $5,000 in an emergency.”
This was hardly news to me. When the front bearings on my car went out, $320 put my checking account into the red.
Mean’s call to return to a more community-based way of life sounds like heaven to me. Were we not warned by the founding fathers about letting the fed get too carried away? Hasn’t the patriarchal hand gotten too heavy? https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/11/opinion/sunday/united-states-too-big.html Can anything be done about it?
I don’t know. Speaking for myself I have become an ostrich with my head in the sand. Just living from paycheck to paycheck, no 401k or even health insurance. Once a follower of politics and the news, I now could not even tell you the name of our vice president and that’s pitiful. I’m of the ilk that thinks that no matter what we do or whom we elect nothing substantial will change. It’s gone too far unless we’re willing to march on Washington and throw ’em all out and start over.
Perhaps I’m wrong and it’s not too late. The mysterious they say it’s never too late so don’t start the revolution without me.