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Tag: Indigenous Americans

Should a Monument to Anthony Wayne be Erected in Defiance, Ohio?

letter to the editor

Letter to the Editor of the Defiance Crescent-News.

Dear Editor,

Plans are afoot to erect a monument to Anthony Wayne on the original site of Fort Defiance adjacent to the Defiance Public Library or on a donated lot across the street. It seems that almost everyone is in agreement that this monument should be erected — a 6-foot testimony to the greatness of Mad Anthony. Defiance mayor Mike McCann assured locals that his team, along with people associated with the Andrew L. Tuttle Museum, will ensure that the plaque on the monument is historically correct, right down to its punctuation. Of course, the text of the plaque has not been made public.

I wonder if the plaque will mention that Wayne was a slave owner; that he used a scorched earth policy to starve local indigenous people; that he burned their villages; that he was known for, to quote the Philadelphia Aurora, “the uncommon slaughter of Native Americans.” Wayne took by force land that belonged to indigenous people. He did so through violence, cruelty, and horrific bloodshed. Further, at the Treaty of Greenville, Wayne promised indigenous locals that the land of “Indiana” and lands to the west of Ohio would be theirs forever. He lied. Will any of these historical facts be on the plaque?

Further, if people want to erect a monument to commemorate eighteenth-century Defiance history, why not erect a monument memorializing the great indigenous people groups that once walked the shores of the Maumee (Hotaawathiipi), Auglaize (Kathinakithiipi), Tiffin, and St. Joseph (Kociihsasiipi) rivers — something more significant than a memorial about a big apple tree or the name of a park. This project has been talked about on and off in recent years, but seems to be on hold.

Our local history is steeped in the blood of indigenous people. Wayne, under the authority of the U.S. government, was a usurper; a man who believed in manifest destiny. In his mind, indigenous people stood in the way of White Americans achieving their God-given destiny. If they would not willingly give up their houses and lands, he would use violence to take them. Is Anthony Wayne really the kind of man we want to memorialize in 2023?

I hope Mayor McCann and city leaders will refocus their attention on building a monument that memorializes the lives of Native Americans who once lived here, and not a man known for ethnic cleansing and the destruction of indigenous people.

Bruce Gerencser
Ney, Ohio

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Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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Christians Say the Darnedest Things: North American Indigenous People Have Only Been Here for 4,200 Years

god said it
The Ken Ham Maxim, The Bible Says…

When did humans first settle North America? According to the most common evolutionary view, this supposedly happened 16,000 years ago. But a new find of a mammoth tusk and bashed-in skull at an ancient butchering site in New Mexico is challenging this view and pushing the date back to 37,000 years. Of course, in a biblical worldview [alternate reality] we know that both of these dates are not correct—so when did Native Americans first arrive?

Let’s consider how biblical history can provide some boundaries for when this might have happened. God created everything in six days, finishing with the creation of the first couple. All humans are descended from this pair. The genealogies in Genesis tell us two thousand years passed between Adam and Abraham and we know there were about two thousand years from Abraham to Christ, and, of course, two thousand more years gets us to the present. That’s about 6,000 years for all of mankind’s history (so even the conservative date of 16,000 years is way off!).

Genesis chapter 6 records the wickedness of man and God’s judgment with a global flood. This reduced the entire human population to just eight people aboard the Ark. These eight were told to spread out and fill the earth, but their descendants wanted to stay together and build a tower. In judgment for their rebellion, God confused their language, splitting them up around the world. This means that no one could have reached modern-day North America until after the tower of Babel event. In other words, no one was in the Americas prior to about 4,200 years ago. At that time, the peoples were dispersed and began travelling and eventually settling all around the globe

— Ken “Hambo”Ham, Answers in Genesis, When Did Humans First Settle North America? August 18, 2022

Bruce Gerencser