Monday, October 28, 2013

Strange Stones, Strange Minds

This post is about the mental illness that causes killing - and just some pretty pictures, at the end. 

More and more, we're seeing people posting photos on the internet of mutilated animals, often destroyed by disturbed boys defying their neighborhoods.

I've noticed that many of the people on canned hunts - confused, tame prey animals raised to shoot - resemble the kind of people who would bully human children. Someone has used Whiteout - rather clumsily - on this photo to defy anyone noting her cruelty. 

One very overweight man (and hunters are often overweight in these photos) is shown triumphant over a mated pair of African Lions. This makes me wonder if he isn't also triumphing over African humans he would like to kill - and is threatening. The basic message seems to be, "I can kill what you love." In other words, your wife, your children, your pets, nothing you love is safe from this person. What is that but bullying?

They seem to believe this is one of the criteria for being a superior human being, when, instead, it simply makes them an angry, reactive child. I've seen film on the internet of people shooting charging bears and pretending to be brave. Why not stand in front of a car, shoot the driver, and pretend to be brave? These people have caused the bear to charge, like a bull-fighter harassing a bull, or pit-bull trainers throwing insane dogs into a pit. What are they doing out there, provoking the animal in its home? What human do they really want to kill, their frustration driving them to take out their anger on an animal they don't know?

They're home-invaders, and if they were human, the home-owner would have been praised by so many humans for killing them. Instead, they pose with the animal whose home has been invaded, with powerful weapons that children can be taught to use, and pretend they're brave.

I don't bring a gun into the woods. I've gone into places that, if a predator discovered me - a predator taught that humans are ALWAYS a vicious threat, and it was kill or be killed - if I survived an attack, I would not blame that predator. 

I would blame my fellow humans who turned  a normal wild animal into a furious, frightened engine of attack, instead of what the First Nations lived with - predators whose territories they knew and wisely stayed out of, or, if encountered, used every method of defusing fear. Suggestions were made to look away from the predator, explain, even sing. I've used many of these techniques when dealing with dangerous humans, and all we animals operate on the same body language. I don't claim they'll be successful in every case, but so far, so good. 

Just a pretty photo of some sheep in Forks.
But what could I do with predators who see me as something that - like the chiefs at the Little Big Horn saw Custer - must be wiped out at last to protect future children?

I will have no chance if I face a frightened bear or cougar up here - and I blame those who chase down every predator they see, to kill for no use or reason except to show off. YOU are at fault. Not the predator. You're the human - YOU have the responsibility.

And don't tell me to stay out of the woods that shouldn't be any more dangerous than the reality of a city street; I don't wear a face veil for anybody. If you're scared of the woods you grew up in - what's wrong with you? I've realized why a man in Forks said, "I hate trees." It's because trees are shelter for prey animals. These people always claim the clearcuts offer more food to animals. Really? Is that the only reason? Or do the animals have no more homes, no place to secure themselves? What woodland animal really likes to go out into an open space, unless it must, because there is nothing else? This sounds like more Fairy-Tale "forestry science."

Mushrooms on the beach in LaPush.
It's amazing, in this time of collapsing earth systems and animal DNA, that people celebrate this behavior. It's amazing they celebrate this behavior in their ancestors.

It's time to change the ceremonies. We need to stop having festivals showing off what we've destroyed, and begin to have ceremonies of apology, thanks, memory, and the promise never to do it any more. We need to learn respect and kindness, and the bravery of kindness. Anyone can be cruel; it's often hard to be kind. It takes a special kind of bravery. Any fool can be mean, and usually are.

Odd stone, Clallam Bay beach.
One country on this planet has realized a horrible history and tried very hard to teach its children never to act in that manner again. It has tried to understand its weaknesses and the development of cruelty and destruction, it's attempted to assist what remain of its victims, and learned not to take pride in that destruction. It's the only country on this planet to do it, probably in the whole length of human history. 

And it ain't America. They're beating the crap out of us on solar usage, too.

Pretty stuff: just some recently-sheered sheep near downtown Forks; pardon the IPod camera. Some mushrooms - possibly Gypsy? - down on the Quilleute Nation. And one of a number of strange stones that show up on the Clallam Bay beach. These look oddly like something organic and fossilized. They're not stromatolites, but they're intriguing.

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