Skip to content

Our Debt to the Native Americans

Have you ever thought about why the United States is so distinctively different from any other country on earth? Well, I’ll tell you why. It’s because of the Native Americans. This is why America is not a carbon copy of the European countries where most Americans came from. Nearly everything different about this country is Native American from A to Z. Cigarettes, chewing gum, rubber calls, popcorn, maple syrup, were all inherited from our Native American predecessors.

Scholars are just beginning to learn that the effect of Native American culture on white customs far overshadows the impact we made.

For instance, a large percentage of our farm produce is made up of plants which were tamed by the Native Americans. Take away corn, tobacco, potatoes, beans, peanuts, tomatoes, chocolate, cotton, and rubber, and we’re practically out of business. That’s over half of our national farm income, and we learned it all from the Native Americans.

Are you wondering about the names: Irish potatoes, Turkish tobacco, Indian Rubber, and Egyptian cotton? These are respectable old-world names for Native American products. In the old days, American things were not favored by the self-styled Europeans, the new-world products were given old-world names.

If it hadn’t been for the rich Native American traditions, it’s hard to tell what kind of government we might have today.

For example, Federalism (the idea of several states within a state), belief that Chiefs are servants of the people, and the idea that community must recognize the difference between men and their dreams, were all in practice before Columbus landed.

Take the field of medicine. Where did we get quinine, cocaine, cascara, ipecac (IP-A-KAK), witch hazel, oil of wintergreen, petroleum jelly and arnica? All from the Native Americans! For 400 years, physicians and botanists have examined the vegetation of America. They’ve yet to discover a single medicinal herb that wasn’t already used by the Native Americans.

We even adapted playing ball from the Native Americans!

Anyway, it’s interesting to learn that we taught the Native Americans a lot less than they taught us. When the first settlers saw the Native Americans burning weeds and inhaling the smoke, they thought they were crazy. But it has caught on, too. Millions of men and women all over the earth follow this quaint Native American practice every day.

By absorbing a lot of the Native American culture, attitudes, and abundant products, the United States is unique as a nation

In result, the people are different, too. The effect of Native Americans changed the manners and customs of people all over the world.

Leave a Comment