April 17, 2009

Twisted to death in Parks and Recreation

In the second episode of Parks and Recreation (airdate: 4/16/09), Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) refers to the fictional Indian backstory of her home town:Before we continue, I'd love to just give you a little history of Pawnee.

The city of Pawnee was incorporated in 1817, when a young man by the name of Reverend Luther Howell came from Terre Haute on an ox. He planted his flag in the ground, and was met soon after by an angry tribe of Wamapoke Indians--who, when seeing the whiteness of his skin, twisted him to death.
Comment:  Well, at least the "Wamapoke Indians" didn't scalp Howell. But angry Indians killing someone just because of his skin color is bad enough.

It's more likely the Indians would've greeted Howell warmly and treated him as a friend. Until Howell and his people betrayed them and tried to exterminate them, that is.

It seems the liberal Poehler isn't too sensitive to the plight of Indians. She could've made fun of Howell's covetousness, but instead she made fun of the Indians' savagery.

For more on the subject, see TV Shows Featuring Indians.


Anonymous said...

The show is a satire. Also, not all Native Americans greeted settlers warmly. Also, it seems to stand to reason that if Europeans brought diseases and boom boom sticks, then it would be a great idea to not greet them warmly.

Anonymous said...

i think the show is possibly making a joke about how white settlers have lied or exaggerated about the incident in historical reports like many things white people claim are historical facts. to assume that the show is making fun of the savagery of native americans is a relatively narrow assumption and i doubt that Rob has spoken directly with the creators of parks and recreation about the complexity of their jokes. i recommend enjoying the art that people have created or moving on to something else positive. there are many real issues in the world