July 05, 2007

From atkins60 54 peop lepc.com:

Re: New World’s first gunshot victim identified (June 20): I am writing in response to your article on America’s first gunshot victim, an Inca “rebel” who was shot in the back of the head with a musket ball. I would first like to say that the use of the term “rebel” is not only innaccurate but blatantly prejudicial. “Patriot” might be a more appropriate term since the Inca’s who died were resisting invaders of their homeland.

I would also like to criticize your inclusion of the comment by your military expert from West Point that the Spanish conquisidors “really knew how to use” their muskets. That ranks right down there with the expression that “The only good Indian is a dead Indian” as repulsive. We cannot undo the past, but we can at least have the courage to admit the wrongs done, and the European invaders of this continent committed horrible acts against its native peoples.

I have to date found your articles interesting, but this is not the first time I’ve been “turned off” by the very unscientific prejudicial tone in one of them; it’s merely the first one that contained clear statements that I could put my finger on.

(Editor’s note: Historical writings do describe the Inca actions as an uprising or rebellion. Such words by no means must imply something negative. Many successful modern nations were founded on rebellions, something that used to be widely remembered though now perhaps it is being forgotten. We would also like to correct a small inaccuracy above, which was that the expert’s quote did not actually include the word “really.”)


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