Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Be careful what you wish for.

While perusing (which for what it's worth is probably the best site on the internet, and in my estimation exactly the reason there is and should be an internet) I saw this article on the last pre-neolithic a tribe in the world. This tribe, which lives in the Pacific, numbers about 50-200 people and has assaulted those who've made attempts to colonize or interact. Essentially it's a tribe of people who still hunt and gather and great modern visitors to the island with a shower of arrows.

This section of the article was particularly bothersome:

On some visits the party would see Sentinelese; on others they would not. Invariably, however, they would try to land - at a place out of bow-shot, if there were natives on the beach - and leave gifts. These included sacks of coconuts, bananas, and bits of iron conveniently sized to be hammered and scraped into arrowheads; occasionally they brought special presents like mirrors, red ribbons, rubber balls, and bead necklaces.

It's funny, or maybe horribly sad that people keep leaving things in the hopes of triggering some desire to make tools.I wonder why everyone is so eager to make them like us. The whole reason they are interesting is that they're not. If they became a tribe with access to rubber balls and spatulas...wouldn't that be destroying the very entity causing our amazement, curiosity and wonder. It's as if people cannot help themselves they feel a need to destroy something so different so amazing. It's bothersome, to say the least. On the other hand the Sentinelese seem to be doing a fine job of mainting their space by launching arrows at fat interlopers.

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