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Happy Genocide Day!

It happens every Thanksgiving: leftists crawl out from under their rocks and tell us that the holiday is a shameful celebration of “genocide.” These days, their preferred medium is Twitter. Here are a few samples:

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Most of the killjoys are unknown leftists, but the genocide theory of Thanksgiving may now be official dogma at MSNBC, which is a notch or two above “unknown.”

Actually, some Indian tribes were victims of genocide. The Iroquois wiped out the Huron, the Erie and others. The Sioux nearly succeeded in their attempt to kill all the Pawnee. The Sioux themselves likely would have been exterminated by the Ojibwa if they had not fled from the forests to the Great Plains. So it is not unreasonable to link the word “genocide” with American Indian tribes.

However, the liberals’ claim that the U.S. government (or more broadly, European settlers in what is now the U.S.) committed genocide is contemptible. If our government had wanted to exterminate the Indians, it could easily have done so. Native numbers were reduced by the arrival of Europeans, but not because the settlers killed them. While I know of no accurate tally, the Indians may have killed as many Europeans as the Europeans killed Indians. The Indians were in general far more warlike, and not infrequently better armed.

What did reduce Indian numbers significantly was disease, especially smallpox and cholera. Beyond that, the depleted Indian populations were overwhelmed demographically by the vastly more numerous whites, and many of them intermarried and joined the more advanced European/American culture. While the story of the American Indians is often tragic, it is anything but a history of genocide.

So don’t let the killjoys get you down.

Recommend this Power Line article to your Facebook friends.

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