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Sunday, September 15, 2013

It's all in the interpretation....

Welcome to your first official blog for APUSH 1!!!!  

As you read over the summer about the beginnings of the New World and how the early Europeans viewed the inhabitants they "discovered" living there, there existed one constant theme; a theme that was actually repeated throughout the entire Exploration Period... The interpretation of what constituted as a "civilization" (or in many cases, what constituted as the absence of a civilized people).  This week, we're going to dive right into that very theme.  Below is your first blog topic....keep in mind that you each of you have the right to your own opinion, but also remember... opinions are like noses, unless you back them up!!!  :-)

TOPIC: What constitutes a Civilization and when, if ever, does a "civilized" people have the responsibility to assist those that aren't civilized to become as such?  Is there a benefit in doing so?

55 comments:

  1. The very definition of a civilized society differs greatly between different groups. To many people, being civil simply means that you act in a proper manner. However, this doesn't fully apply to a wide scale. A civilization is any large group of people that have similar social conventions (i.e. similar styles of food, clothing, religious beliefs, etcetera), live in a general area, are self-sufficient when it comes to the basic needs of a human, and have any form of government, whether it be more similar to America's complex bureaucracy, or the matriarchal society of the Iroquois. For example, two nations that are seen by some to be the epitome of civilization, the USA and Russia, have their own foods, clothing, and languages, and have highly advanced governments. Also, they each have their own respective area of land. It is only the responsibility of civilized people to help uncivilized people become as such when that group becomes a danger to themselves, or the people around them (unless previously provoked), this way it is done in the name of legitimate safety. Also, it is only an option when the civilized group truly mean no harm to the group they are trying to influence. There is a benefit of doing so, as it could make the lives of the people, and the civilizations around them easier and less chaotic, and could be the beginning of relations between the two (i.e. trade).

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    1. Brandon, I liked how you mentioned the different different forms of government in a civilization, whether it's the American type or the Iroquois type, it is worth the respect and concern to be defined as a proper hierarchy. Also you pointed out the "legitimate safety", which was indeed a correct and effective manner of helping. The benefit for two or more civilizations standing together and aiding each other is primarily extending the economy, whether local or universal, just as the relationship of trading you referred.

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    2. Brandon, I agree that the civilized should help the 'uncivilized' if they become a danger to others. However, to prevent any bloodshed or forced takeovers, one should be careful in judging if the above-mentioned truly are a danger to themselves. What we consider to be a danger could simply be part of their traditions or beliefs. And when different peoples do help each other, not only do they get potential trade partners, they also get potential allies. Also, is it necessary for a civilization to have a respective area of land, like the US and Russia have? The reason I ask this is that there are many nomadic or even semi-nomadic Native Americans such as those on the Great Plains.

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    3. Honestly I don't really think the definition of civilization changes, it's more to do with what the accepted standards of what is civilized and what's not in a particular country are. Also I know where you're trying to come from but I think the "uncivilized" country should be left to its own devices instead of just stepping in and reforming the whole society of the "uncivilized" country because the civilized country just decides they are becoming a danger to themselves, (in a way trying to play the role of God)

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    5. Honestly, this definition of civilization seems flawless and it is virtually perfect. I do agree that it is acceptable to assist uncivilized people when the concept of safety of the populous is in play. Theoretically on paper, when you assist the group, you mean no harm, like you mentioned, but unfortunately it usually doesn't work that way. Power over another group of people tend to corrupt leaders, making them want to conquer them rather than civilize them. Typically, the concept of civilizing people gets skewed when a group would benefit from conquering instead of helping a group of people, which could definitely happen over time.

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    6. Brandon, the way you defined a civilization, and set the limits on what exactly constitutes a civilization were flawless. While I may not necessarily agree with your views of what a civilization is, I must say that you had perfectly explained your opinion in a clear and precise fashion. Your examples were also perfect for the scenarios you brought forth. This was a well written piece.

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    7. Brandon, that is true. A civilization does depend on the group you're with. Like that old saying "Tell me who you're with and I'll tell you who you are". People see you as civilized if your friends act the same way. So if you're hanging around with people who are known for being slackers and bad influences and impressions on people then you wouldn't really consider yourself civilized now would you? So, your statement of it depends how you define the word civilized was a great one.

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  2. The word “civilization” originally comes from Latin “Civis” which means residents of the city. The extension of its meaning leads to the condition of a rather advanced society and culture. The idea of civilization comes across several different fields including national consciousness, technical standards, etiquette, religious ideology, customs, and development of scientific knowledge, etc. Before the 19th century, the Western World has given civilization a relatively narrow definition, believing one who has advanced methods of production and abundant knowledge is identified as a civilization--- just as these early European settlers who set themselves in the position of dominance. While the ones with poor production quantities, and behaviors differ from those in the Western is verified to be “savage”--- just like the Native Americans in the eyes of Europeans. It is affirmative that a "civilized" people have the responsibility to assist those that aren't civilized to become as such, however, in a benevolent approach. Although there is existence of thousands of unique civilizations, upon a vaster and a more universal scale, they are all simply family members exhibiting on a planet together. Therefore whenever another civilization is in need for help or in other thorny circumstances, other civilizations should undoubtedly provide with assistance in order to rescue a future possibility of prosperity and power. Yet, if Europeans’ influence on the Indians is said to be an emergent “assistance” rather than a bloody conquest, in which Europeans themselves become the real savages, the result would be a massacre of millions more.

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    1. Carrie, I like that you pointed out how "the idea of civilization comes across different fields including national consciousness...scientific knowledge, etc." Taking into account all these fields, it becomes quite hard to define what 'civilized' is. How defined should a nation's scientific knowledge be before they can be considered civilized people? Mankind practices so many different religions. Which religion's ideologies constitute that of a civilized people? For that matter, how can one even accurately judge all these without bias? I also like that you mentioned the Latin root of the word. It's interesting how far off the early European meaning (process of bringing out of a savage state) is from its original one (residents of a city).

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    2. Carrie, i strongly agree with your view of civilization. Each nation has a different perspective of a civilization meaning "civilization" is actually different for each individual. Also, we should definitely help a nation when they are in need, its simply our responsibility. But, we can inly do this if that " uncivilized" nation asks for help.

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    3. I like how you brought up the origin of the word "civilization." It's odd that the Europeans emphasized on teaching their children Latin and other dead languages, but didn't take into consideration what some of it actually meant (even though the Spanish were the ones who came across actual Native American cities). The Spanish, even though they said that they wanted to save the New World "heathens", mostly killed millions of them, obliterated their civilization, and sent them into a path of destruction that engulfed the Northeastern Indians as the English came in. One can only imagine what the great Aztec and Incan empires would have aspired to, had they not been decimated by the Spanish Catholic "liberators."

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    4. I agree with what you said when you stated that it was a benevolent approach to change and assist those who are not civilized in certain people's eyes. Truthfully, it is not their duty and the people that are living there may like the way that they are living, and dont want anything to do with the outside people. Also, I like how you went into detail about what civilization meant, it was similar to my outlook on civilization!

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  3. The problems with trying to define such a word are not just that standards change over time (compared to our society now, even the Europeans in the 1700s could be considered as uncivilized), it's also because there was, and still is, little agreement over what is 'civilized' and what is not. For example, the Aztecs and Mayans were certainly culturally significant and had their own laws, social hierarchy, writing system, religion, and even their own bustling metropolis capitals. The natives that lived in North America were also similarly rich in culture and society. Granted, they did not have large ships or guns, they were by all means, still a civilization. Of course, the early Europeans clearly did not agree. To their elitist minds, only cultures similar to theirs could even be graced with the term 'civilized.' Thus, they viewed it as their responsibility to educate and reform the 'heathens' that were currently living in the New World. Never mind that the natives had already been there for hundreds of years; their so-called 'natural right' didn't count and couldn't protect them from the massacres, uprootings, and forced Christianization that followed. Still, it is acceptable for the civilized to help the 'uncivilized' in times of trouble, such as if the 'uncivilized' were dying from a certain disease, then the civilized should certainly provide the necessary medicine, education, supplies, and medical training. However, they must be careful to respect and try to observe the beliefs, traditions, and wishes of the people they are trying to help. In doing so, the uncivilized become more technologically advanced, perhaps develop into a trustworthy ally or even a powerful people in the far-off future.

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    1. Hannah, I agree with your point that the Europeans only treated the cultures similar to theirs as civilizations. Just like we travel to a different country, seeing all those slightly or dramatically different cuisines and customs--- yet it's just the way diversity works. Different does not mean abnormal or even "heathens" as you mentioned. Also, "they must be careful to respect...and wishes of the people they are trying to help" is absolutely equitable and logical. In order to help, you need to gain an idea of his/her request and real need.

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    2. I agree with your point. Technically, anyone in the entire world will have a different definition of "civilized." This is especially true considering that its definition changes as you talk about large scale topics, such as entire societies. Also, I like how you brought up that some would even consider the aristocratic Europeans to be less than them, if only by today's standards. However, it can be seen that they considered anyone that was a "savage", whether it be the Irish or the Native Americans, worthy to be destroyed; even the Spanish believed the Indians were at least close enough to being equal to themselves to be worthy to marry the conquistadores.

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    3. Couldn't agree with you more, as long as nothing is imposed on them by force and you don't impose on their beliefs or customs by all means help out.

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    4. Hannah, you couldn't be more right, to define the word "civilized" is almost impossible. Everyone would have their own idea to what being "civilized" is. The europeans certainly didn't agree that the Mayans and Aztecs were civilizec at all, they called them "savages and barbarians."

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    5. Hannah, You are on point! I truly share the same view on this. When you say, "...there was, and still is, little agreement over what is 'civilized' and what is not," You were right. There really isn't a universal definition for a civilization. I also agree with you on when a civilization should help the un-civilized.

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  4. To be "civil" is ones own interpretation or opinion. There is no set definition since their are various aspects that effect the meaning of being civil. Being civilized is to bring a place or people to a stage of social, cultural, and moral development considered to be more advanced. Our views are different for what we consider to be advanced. Every person has different views on civilization just like the Europeans. From the Europeans view the Native Americans were considered "savages". Before the 19th century being civilized meant having bold methods of production and having high intelligence. There is definitely a responsibility of us to help nations that aren't at a well standard of civilization to reach their. Indefinitely, the question comes back to what each nation/country/person's view is on civilization.

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    1. Iqra, I absolutely consent to the point that the real requirement for a so-called civilization is to be highly advanced. At least relatively high-ranking and progressive comparing to others. The abstract sense of the concept "advancement" thus makes the idea of "civilization" rather ambiguous.

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    2. I disagree with "There is definitely a responsibility of us to help nations that aren't at a well standard of civilization to reach their." I believe its NOT the responsibility of another country/nation to help another country/nation, but the responsibility of the "uncivilized" nation to ask for help. If you ask me, if it was every country's responsibility, than wars would break out cause every country would have the responsibility to "civilize" another country their own way.

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    3. I would have to agree with Michael on this one because it isn't our responsibility to help the uncivilized. Look at the Native Americans for example, they were uncivilized according to Europeans but they didn't want to become civilized. You can't force a country to become civilized, but rather if the country asks for assistance than assisting them is a viable solution. You have no right to invade a country that is deemed "uncivilized" and change the country unless the uncivilized country wants the assistance.

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    4. Your opinion is similar to mine! The only difference is that I agree with both Michael and Vinit. There isn't a responsibility of us helping other countries to become civilized, it is a choice that some societies may make. They may believe that they have to help, but it should never be a duty to help a country become civilized, because of the way they act or maybe obtain food.

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    5. Being civil is most certainly changed in different cultures. As mentioned in other replies it isn't a civilization's job to help. It's as if you say "You have been living the wrong way the entire time, we know the true way." It's partially what the Native Americans were mad at the Europeans for. Who are they to say that they live the wrong way?

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  5. There are many things that constitutes a civilization, the most of all is functional government and leadership. Without those two things, no civilization will ever be complete. That the Aztecs for an example. They had a fully functional government, a leader, and a social system. And when the europeans came into play they described the Aztecs as "savages and barbarians," but were they really? I don't think so, I think that they were one of the most civilized people in the Americas, and the Europeans thought they weren't. They thought that they needed to become civilized, when they were already. So if you ask me, I don't think anybody has the right to civilizes anybody without them wanting to.

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    1. Mike i definately agree with your two factors that are included in the definition of a civilization. Without government or leader the civilization would be out of control and there would be no rules.

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    2. I like your simple definition of civilization. There really doesn't always have to be a complicated mass of variables that describes a civilization. In my opinion, the Aztecs were a very advanced civilization. They may not have had guns or steel armor, but they had a government, a beautiful capital city, dedicated soldiers such as the Aztec Jaguars, very environmentally efficient agricultural techniques, and very accurate mathematicians.
      I don't think the Spanish really looked as hard as they should have. Maybe they just didn't like non-Christians.

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    3. Mike, I like how you used the Aztec as an example. If I had to choose, I would've used them as an example as well.

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    4. Definately true Mike, the thing is government and leadership can be interpreted in it's own way as well. Which was what the Europeans had a problem with. What if the Native Americans set sail first and found Europe, how would they consider their ideals? Would they be considered heretics or would they greet it with open arms?

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  6. Civilization is a type of society or culture created or adopted by a particular nation or region, it should have a government and social system or at the very least a hierarchy system in some way shape or form. However it is definitely not and never will be the responsibility of a more "civilized" nation to assist those of an "uncivilized" nation to become civilized, it is wrong to just impose your beliefs and ideals being a civilized nation onto another nation period and that is what you are going to end up doing. Unless of course the uncivilized nation in question asks for assistance, in which case its perfectly fine but it is unlikely that the "uncivilized" nation will do so. Here's the thing, a "civilized" nation will probably only ever "civilize" an "uncivilized" nation if there is some kind of benefit to reap in return. No civilized nation (at least nowadays) would ever use tax payer's money and use up their own resources just to "civilize" another nation when in doing so they get nothing beneficial in return.

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    1. i absolutely agree with your point that a "civilized" nation would only want to help an "uncivilized" nation if there was something in it for them. No one would do someone a favor like this because of competition of each civilization trying to reach the top. This concept was shown between the Europeans and Naive American civilization.

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    2. Rob, you are correct when you stated that it is not a more 'civilized' nation's burden to civilize the 'uncivilized' and doing so often ends in the imposition of beliefs and ideals unto the 'uncivilized'. Prime examples are the Spanish to the Central American Indians and the British to the Aborigines of Australia. I find it a bit disheartening that you are also correct when you pointed out that the 'civilized' almost always have an ulterior motive when helping the 'uncivilized.' Can one be considered truly civilized if one needs to be paid before giving a hand to a fellow human being?

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    3. I completely agree with you Robbert. No nation (at least in todays world) would ever use their own resources to "civilize" someone else, unless their payout is greater than what they put in, and even than it would be highly unlikely for that to happen.

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    4. I couldn't agree with you more when you say the "civilized" wouldn't help the "un-civilized" unless there was something they could gain from it. Since when do people want to do things for free? It's practically human instinct to want something in return. For example, volunteering. Students go out and "volunteer", but are they really doing it without receiving anything in return? Most people only do it so they have something to put on their college transcripts.

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    5. That's so true Nirali, there's really nothing free in this world nowadays. No one just gets up and helps someone out for their own satisfaction. Everyone always wants something in return either that same day or spontaneously brings it up a week later. For Example, a week later that person that helped you would say something like "Remember that thing I did for you last week?" It's honestly pathetic that our world today doesn't have as much generosity as it used to.

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  8. I have to agree with a number of post that were made here. The primary argument that each of you seem to have is that nailing down a clear and precise definition of a "civilization" is difficult to do due to how different societies view what constitutes the very foundation of a civilization. Is it merely the ability to have a solid governmental foundation? A written language? Some sort of effective economy? An advance intellect due to technological advancements? Or is it a combination of one or more of these or do you have to have them all.

    The other dilemma in play is when does a "civilized" people lend aid to those they perceive to be in need; be it due to their "uncivilized" manner or their lack of helping themselves due to a number of factors? The reason, in part, that it has become a dilemma (or perceived to be) reverts back to the original question. It's the full-circle conundrum. I have to agree with Rob's analysis that most advanced (yeah, I'm avoiding the word "civilized") countries today (and to be honest, historically) do not simply rush to the aid of others ("civilized" or not) without considering "what is in it for us?" Some would argue that is just human nature and maybe that is true... but is it really? Is it just plain "greed" or good sense? (Remember the old saying, "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine!"?)

    Most of you seem to feel that if a country has the means, that they have the moral responsibility to come to the aid of others. Yet I purpose this to you. It's always amazing me how so many people believe in "Evolution" yet always forget the core of this theory: "Survival of the fittest" - therefore, if they can't survive on their own, so be it!! They aren't the "fittest" therefore they should not survive...plan and simple.

    Just food for thought.......

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    1. This is an excellent topic for the USA, which has an extreme amount of alliances and overseas bases. It seems that when anyone needs help, America will usually come to the rescue. Also, reading your post made me think of a new concept: helping less civilized people become more civilized to the benefit of the already civilized. This was very common during the Cold War, as Americans supplied the Afghan anti-Communist Mujahedeen, and the Russians supplied the Communist NVA and Vietcong. Also, in some cases, the Americans went in to "help" people where there didn't seem to be a gain, such as when the coalition invaded Somalia, leading to the famed "Black Hawk Down" in Mogadishu. Even though it was meant to help the Somali civilians, there was no real "back scratching" for the Americans.

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  9. What constitutes a civilization can be considered a controversial question. While some may figure that a civilization consists of leadership, government, and a steady food supply, others will beg to differ that not everyone thinks alike. Most refer to the Western style of civilization to be the correct way to found a new society, but in reality, is there an actual formal way to create a civilization? Different peoples will see different ways fit to grow and prosper as a whole. For instance, the Incas and the Mayans firmly believed in human sacrifices to their gods. While on the other side of the world, the Romans and the Greek were building a style of government where everyone part-takes in what decisions will be made in order to educate and effectively rule their people. Not everyone will see eye to eye. To illustrate, when the Europeans came over to the New World, they describes the "Indians" to be barbaric and savages, due to the fact that they were not accustomed to different ways of living.
    If a civilization becomes strong and admirable, others will follow. Although, no society should ever, on their own free will, enter and begin to dictate what another civilization is to do. As seen in the past, imposing new laws upon others on your own freewill, only brought death, war, and debt. If a civilization is on the brink of self destruction and is crying out for help, then that will be the cue for another nation to intervene and lend a hand. However, lend a hand in the aspect to help the falling country stabilize itself once more, not overrule and take over what is not rightfully theirs. Should the helping nation expect something in return? Only if its the other country's alliance.

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    1. Iamka, I believe you raised an excellent question: "... is there an actual formal way to create a civilization? " That probably is the true question and maybe, even more importantly, the answer - there IS NO actual "formal way" to create a civilization. As a matter of fact, even though there is a "dictionary" definition for the English word "civilization," I believe the actual reality of what you or I determine to be a "civilization" is a bit more difficult to nail down.

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    2. I also like that question because just like how Mr. Gehm said there is no formal way. Everyone has their own opinion of being civilized and considering themselves civilized or other people. Some people think they're better than others just like the people working for government, or even people with higher paying jobs think that they are better than someone working at Wendy's. So there is really no way because since everyone has their own way of thinking, there is no way we can all rise up as one and be civilized.

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  10. Today, civilization is the process by which a society or place reaches an advanced stage of social development and organization. By definition today Native Americans can be considered civilized for their languages, farming, hunting, and etc. During the 1500s-1700s, that definition for the Europeans might as well been "if you’re not like us you're SAVAGE!” Not too many people tried to understand why the Native Americans acted the way they did. One reason that they were considered savaged was because they were not as advanced as the Europeans were. That may be true, but Native Americans had a different mindset on technology. They believed that they were equal to anything else on Earth, while the Europeans believed they were given Earth to rule. Which is an example of civilization as well, the Native Americans created their own religion saying that they are equal as one. However, one thing you NEVER talk about with others is religion. Which could also give another idea why Europeans considered the Native Americans so called “uncivilized”, the Native Americans didn’t want to follow their religion. Although, it’s like saying you have an IPhone then someone saying “I’m superior to you I have Android!” I’m not saying that the Mayans sacrifices were right, but they believed in their god as much as the Europeans did. Showing gratitude to god different in cultures even if we wouldn’t like it they believed there god would.

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    1. This comment is true for a few reasons. Europe definitely did have a major concept of imperialism at the time because each country thought that they were the best country in the world. Europe also believed that "if you are not like us you're a savage," in most cases. This is only true in most cases because when Europeans were exploring Africa, they were actually impressed by how civilized towns were in certain regions because of the roads and houses. Other than that clarification, every other point seems valid.

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  11. To answer this question we must first define civilized. Civilized means "having advanced or humane cultures; well-breed." Technically whether a culture is "civilized" or not is open for discussion because there is no standard for what qualifies as civilized. Civilization should consisted of a large population, natural resources and sufficient food. At no point is it acceptable for a civilization to "civilize" another civilization because it is not morally acceptable. Why does anyone have the right to tell others how life should be lived? The concept that civilizations could conquer others is ridiculous because we are murdering our own species for "ownership" of land.
    In a broader sense, the Europeans had no right to claim land in the New World because it didn't belong to them. The Native American treasures didn't belong to them either. In attempt to Christianize the Native Americans, the Europeans ended up annihilating a ancient tradition that can never be revived. They also believed that anyone different from the Europeans were uncivilized(with the exception of a few regions of Africa that were "civilized"). One example being the Native Americans in the European's eyes. The Europeans thought that it was their duty and responsibility to "save" these people, although in the end they ended up extirpating a whole culture.
    The only possible benefit by civilizing people is creating a new interbred race like the mestizos. Otherwise, besides that exception, there are not many benefits that come from civilizing a people. It is basically a win lose situation because one group being "assisted" is actually hurt and the other group of people have the strength to be telling other groups how to live life.

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    1. I strongly agree with what you are saying about how some people think that the concept of civilization is by killing and murdering our own species for "ownership" of land is ridiculous. It shouldn't have to be that way, it is best just to make peace first then compromise. The only way they thought of getting land back then, was to be more powerful and in control and that is exactly what occurred when they took over civilizations that became weaker then them.

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    2. Vinit, you stated "The only possible BENEFIT by civilizing people is creating a new interbred race like the mestizos." [capitalization added] - I'm curious as to why you would claim that as being a "benefit." Isn't interbreeding, for the purpose it was used by the Spaniards, simply one culture FORCING itself onto another by bleeding the two together?

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    3. Lord Gehm,I stated the fact that interbreeding is a benefit because of the fact that it technically does avoid violence if you think about it. If interbreeding occurs, there would be less violence in the long run, so I felt that it would be inevitable anyways, while avoiding future violence.

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    4. I also agree with your point of view. Humans are not so expendable as for one group to take over another for wealth and land. When this occurs an entire culture and race, no matter how "civilized" is exterminated. However, according to you interbreeding was a positive effect. This is not the case as it helped only the Europeans. Some natives were forced to have children with the Europeans, and this watering down of native blood also decreased the culture and civilization of the natives.

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  12. I think a civilization can be built with certain aspects that are needed, but general things that can benefit the society in the future. A civilization needs, people making a living in the community, being able to eat, sleep and do the general things humans need to do to survive. Everything else is just to spice things up a bit, or make the society more interesting; things that are wants and not needs. It is not a "civilized" peoples job to help those who are uncivilized, because the people that are able to survive and live on this earth are most likely in a civilized society. As time passes from the start of the any civilization that was built, they begin to understand the concepts and ways of surviving. They become more skilled and even more civilized then they were from the beginning.
    On the other hand, even though I believe that all societies can be civilized, many people back then disagreed. The Europeans that sailed to the New World, believed the Indians that lived there were savages and weren't civilized at all. It was their opinion and choice to make that judgement. Soon enough they forced the Indians into doing things they wanted and what they thought was a perfect civilization. This just shows how many people may have different perspectives on how people can or cannot be civilized, and not everyone will agree with what may be put forward.

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    1. I somewhat disagree with this view of a civilization. Parts of civilization do not necessarily depend on each other, especially if a civilization is huge. Take the Romans, who were considered one of the greatest civilizations of all history. One part of the empire did not necessarily depend on another remote part, but were still part of the same civilization.

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  13. Defining “civilization” and “civilized” is like trying to define ‘time’ without using the word ‘time’ in the definition. During the time of Cortes, “civilized” people (to varying degrees) depended on money, need for necessities, land being divided up into properties for ‘civilized’ people to buy and sell with money. The only goals of civilization are to increasingly use up distant resources, find more distant resources, and to expand civilization, governments, and businesses. According to this definition, the peoples said to be ‘uncivilized’ weren't uncivilized in the least. For example the Aztec, they were powerful and wealthy because they conquered neighboring areas. (They expanded their civilization and have money to buy and sell.) They were also advanced in Science and Agriculture. They had a leader and a social class structure (form of government). Both the Aztecs and the Europeans share similar characteristics of a civilization. There were only few differences. One example is that the Aztec were big on Human sacrifice. As gruesome as it is, they did it in the name of god, for what they strongly believed in. I don’t think a more “civilized” people should help anyone unless they are asked to. Most people wouldn't do things unless there was something they wanted in return and that’s exactly what these civilizations would do. They’d “help” or conquer a society to get more resources, precious metals, and land for their country or etc.

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    1. Very impressive,whenever the Europeans conquered for "God" it coincidently happen to be a profit as well. It seems that the whole religion thing was a sheild to help with their gain of power. Native Americans represented civilization in anyway possible. However, the Aztecs may have sacrificed humans but it was to worship in their own way.

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  14. The concept of a civilization has changed over the course of history. During the Exploration Period, the definition of a civilized people were a group that believed in one God and Christianity. Obviously this is not the case anymore, as there are many civilizations that believe in myriad religions. Many personal view of a civilization is a a group or many groups united under a single government or leader. This definition, unlike others that have been proposed,allows empires such as the Roman and British empires to be counted as civilizations.
    I feel that there is no reason for one civilization to conquer another, unless one asks the other for assistance. This rule, in my opinion, should stand even if a civilization is destroying itself, as I believe in the survival of the fittest. If a civilization becomes too big, and collapses upon itself, this needs to happen in order for political and religious reform to happen. I believe that civilizations must rise and fall in order to maintain "political homeostasis" of sorts. The reasoning behind this way of thinking is that whenever one civilization conquers another, the conquering will always take advantage over the conquered, as it is human nature. In most cases, such as in the case of the Aztecs, naturally falling would have been much less detrimental to their culture and way of life than the Europeans conquering them.

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  15. I believe that ''Civilized'' people do have the responsibility to teach other people how to be civilized as well. Civilized to me is someone who knows how to be mature in their own way, someone who knows how to respect someone and give someone their full attention. Also someone who has their own state of mind but who also has an education and a strive for more success. Who is somewhat stable and well organized with their plans even if it doesn't go as planned. Therefore, I do think that someone who is civilized does have the responsibility to help someone else be at that same level because America to me is all about helping each other. Someone who just walks by someone who is practically craving for some type of help isn't someone who is civilized at all. we have to help others get to the top with us. So, even if we're still civilized or not, we should still help each other get there.

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