Forgive me, if I’m wrong. Maybe cultures do not always transform for the better.
In my last blog, I entertained the story called THE WIDESPREAD ENIGMA CONCERNING STAR WOMAN. This is a story from Zitkala-Ša in American Indian Stories, published in 1921. From this story, we learned how the elders feel the young people have lost their way. We also learn about another phenomenon: What can appear as progressing toward a brighter future for one aspect of society can indeed mean the death of a culture for others.
Zitkala-Ša describes the outcome of Chief High Flyer. The final twist in the plot is not unlike the stories from our beloved Mark Twain. One mile short of the post office where he would mail his letter to Washington describing how the Indian lands were being tricked out from underneath them, he was arrested falsely for setting fire to government buildings.
He was the voiceless man of American. And now in his old age he was cast into prison. The chagrin of it all, together with his utter helplessness to defend his own or his people’s human rights, weighed heavily upon his spirit.
And it is only a vision of the Statue of Liberty that gave the chief any hope at all. Listen now, as Chief High Flier finds out how he was set free from his suffering in jail.
[Chief High Flier] looked into his son’s eyes to know the meaning of these two men. “it is our agreement,” he explained to his old father. “I pledged to pay them half of your land if they got you out of jail.” The old chieftain sighed but made no comment. Words were vain. He pressed his indelible thumb mark, his signature it was upon the deed, and drove home with his son.
My thought: Could it be that GREED for POWER always steals what has been GOOD and PLEASANT?