Opinion: Natives lived 'simple, animallike existence'

"Let's put aside the wars between tribes, the outright brutality and the like, and just look at the daily lives of the Indians before Columbus. Life was lived simply, in primitive cycles. Natives inhabited crude hovels and hunted or used subsistence farming to sustain themselves.

Yes, they could enjoy family and friends, tell tales of bringing down buffalo, and imagine that the stars in the sky painted pictures of giant bears and other creatures. The ancestors of Europeans did the same.

Perhaps many pre-Columbian natives were content with their lot in a simple, animallike existence. But what of young Indian children who wondered why family members sickened and died and if there were ways unknown to the shamans to relieve their pain or cure them? Or if there were ways to build shelters that would resist bitter winters, stifling summers and the storms that raged in both seasons?

What about those who wondered whether there were ways to guarantee that food would always be abundant and starvation no longer a drought away, or why plants grow, and what those lights in the sky really were; and whether they could ever actually fly like birds and observe mountains from the height of eagles?

Where were the opportunities for these natives?"

Get the Story:
Edward L. Hudgins: Columbus helped all of us find a better way--yes, the natives, too (The Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star 10/12)

Relevant Links:
Transform Columbus Day - http://www.transformcolumbusday.org

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