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Posts Tagged ‘acceptable standards’


a lovelorn Partridge

drumming wildly for a mate

lures a gun instead

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Up to this point I have never re-blogged a post, (considering such a thing to be cheating). In this case, I thought Lori’s blog was so good that I’d make an exception. Enjoy.

Lori Potter

As we rapidly approach the end of 2012, I believe now is a good time to focus on something big.  What I’m talking about is an issue so deep and dark that it has plagued my community for at least twenty years.   It’s the root of many reasons why so many people are emotionally disconnected and refuse to attend meetings, volunteer, or have generally anything productive to do with the tribe whatsoever.  Yes, folks, it’s high time I address the elephant in the room because frankly, he’s been toying with my community for far too long.

I’m talking about…

Unforgiveness.

Oh yes…a lot of crap can happen in twenty years.  There is indeed a list reasons why people feel the way they feel, and that list is very long.  It includes:

  • broken promises,
  • false assumptions of life-long prosperity spoon-fed to multiple generations,
  • secrecy,
  • political manipulation,
  • financial misleading,
  • threats to remain blindly…

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Notice that the title is not “Savages In Red Lake”. That’s because I’m thinking about people in general (which may include a few Red Lakers, and I don’t apply those terms to who they are, but to some of their actions.)

“Savage” is an interesting term. I think it applies here in two forms: the verb form; as in “To Savage”, and in its noun form, as in “A person who savages”.

When I think of acts of savagery I can think of two kinds of examples: verbal savagery or as the law calls it, “verbal assault” and physical savagery or physical assault.
One black woman calls another a “*itch”, (or fill in your favorite swear word). Alternately, one person says something demeaning to another person, thus demeaning them both.

Or one person perpetrates some form of violence on another person:
A white man cuffs his kid upside the head in Walmart
Pushing, shoving, slapping or pinching your spouse in your trailer home.
A fight in a redneck bar, (If you have to resort to physical violence, you’ve already lost).
A drive by shooting,
Doing anything beyond the bounds of respectful behavior.

Calling someone by the name “savage” was usually done by “civilized” people to distinguish themselves from the former people who used violence to settle their differences. Historically, it was applied by white colonial people to people of color. But I think presently I would apply it to the actions of any person who chooses not to apply minimal standards of civil behavior.

However, what is “civil” behavior? I’m intrigued by some forms of this word as well. As in “a civil person,” (Being civil implies that you may not like someone else but you’re able to use minimal socially acceptable standards of behavior towards them).

Or “someone who is civilized” (A person who has learned and uses minimally socially acceptable standards of behavior)

In addition, a society is called “a civilization” (or a group of people who live in a state of being minimally civil to each other).

Dogs usually live in a very civil society. They have a social or pecking order where they get into fights but usually the loser will end up baring his or her throat or belly to the winner, and after standing over the loser for a few seconds to make his point, they both go on their way. However, sometimes I’ll hear shrieks of doggy pain in the distance which tells me that there is a dominant dog not content with the standard signs of surrender but wants to inflict more pain on the less aggressive dog by “savaging” them.

While it’s important to be more civilized, it’s difficult. That’s because if you try to call people on their savage behavior, they are likely to turn that behavior on you. Try to tell someone that they are rude for swearing and you are likely to get sworn at. Try to break up a domestic disturbance and you could end up with a black eye, or worse.

On the other hand, if you are doing something savage. Civil people may not call you on your behavior for fear of reprisal, but you can be sure they can discern that what you are doing is wrong and are making value judgments about it and you.

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