April 02, 2010

Yeagley's emotions vs. critics' evidence

A colleague on Facebook tries to understand David Yeagley the Indian apple, beginning with whether he's an Indian by "blood" or adoption. Here's our exchange:A blood test would probably give a guesstimate of how much Indian blood he has. Depending on how his family tree looks, he might be able to prove more than that.Right. So if he's genuinely Indian, he should take a genetics test and tout the results. It wouldn't prove his exact lineage, but it probably would put the adoption story to rest.

The fact that he hasn't done this is telling. If he took the test and came up pure white, that would blow his claims out of the water. Which suggests why he hasn't taken the test.You're forgetting psychology, Rob. Your world is very simple, where people do what you think is logical. But Yeagley might have emotional hangups, where he doesn't feel you have any right to know how much percent he has of various types of ancestry. Bottom line--most people don't live in your world. They live in a world where emotional factors are more important than cold logic.You're forgetting how the real world operates, Annie. Yeagley isn't making claims in the privacy of his home. He's made claims in public, in the media, in writing. He's gotten paying gigs because of his assertions. He's convinced right-wingers he's the lone voice of authentic Indians.

Real Indians have pushed back against Yeagley's undocumented assertions. He's possibly the least accepted, most marginalized Indian in existence. Almost everyone hates him because of his outrageous statements.

Emotions win lawsuits?

Now we learn that he's supposedly lost jobs because critics have painted him as a non-Indian. He's suing these critics because of how they've allegedly harmed him. If his lawsuits ever make it to court, they may well turn on whether he can prove his Indian blood. He certainly won't win them based on "emotions."

If he wants to stay in his emotional cocoon, great. His so-called hangups, the ones you've imagined out of thin air, are only hurting him, not the rest of us. Our logic is crushing his emotions into the ground, which is why he's desperately filing lawsuits to salvage his reputation.

If he's happy with that, so are his critics. Indians will continue to revile him and he'll continue to lose work and money. If he doesn't want to fight back with facts and evidence, we'll continue kicking his butt all over the map.

Bottom line is that your view of the bottom line is wrong. You're the only one with a simplistic view here: that emotions inevitably trump logic. Your view is especially odd since you seem to think Yeagley's emotions hold sway over someone. Someone other than a few rabid fundamentalist and neo-Nazi types, that is.

In fact, most Indians think the cold hard facts trump Yeagley's ignorant and racist beliefs. That's exactly why he's so incredibly unpopular. He's taken stupid, illogical, "emotional" positions that most Indians disagree with because they're demonstrably false.


Sparky said...

Dear Rob
Please refrain from using the term "Indian apple." The phrase is indicative of a common stereotype that we in the apple community find insensitive. Not all apples are red.
Granny Smith,
Golden Delicious

Rob said...

Cute. But most apples are red, so the generalization holds.

dmarks said...

There is a point to be made about that term and terms like it, which are too easily leveled at people because they do NOT fit expected behaviors or stereotypes.

Rob said...

As I'm sure you know, I don't throw the term "Indian apple" around lightly. In fact, I'm not sure I've used it on anyone but Yeagley.

Given his white supremacist views, though, "Indian apple" fits him like a glove. He's a textbook example of the term; he epitomizes it. If it didn't exist, we'd have to invent it for him.

Under these circumstances, I don't feel bad about calling Yeagley names. If he doesn't like it, he can stop talking about the superiority of whites over "darkies" (his word for minorities).