So the next time anybody calls you that, be sure to play Progressive Etymology Whack-a-Mole (i.e., “Hey, did you know the word ‘anarchy’ just means ‘no government?” etc.)
“For his time, Pratt was definitely a progressive,” Snyder said. Indeed, he thought his ideas were the only thing keeping Native peoples from being entirely wiped out by disease and starvation. “That’s one of the dirty little secrets of American progressivism — that [progress] was still shaped around ideas of whiteness.”
Snyder said that Pratt replaced the popular idea that some *groups *were natively inferior to others with the idea that some *cultures *that were the problem, and needed to be corrected or destroyed. In other words, he swapped biological determinism for cultural imperialism.
Of course, it’s now evident that some of the problems of American Indians are biological — specifically, they lack Darwinian adaptations for dealing with alcohol and some infectious diseases.
In Australia, Aboriginals were dying so fast of novel infectious diseases such as tuberculosis that liberal reformers’ hopes were focused on children of mixed parentage. The goal was to educate them so they could marry whites and have children with strong immune systems. Of course, this government-sponsored miscegenation campaign was racist.