If you've read my articles long enough, you know I have expressed great reverence and respect for our Native Americans, and have been an advocate for many of the local tribal requests over the years.

That said, I cannot help but wonder if certain people have just a little too much time on their hands to stare at stuff until they see an angle where it offends them.

The Massachusetts State Seal is under fire now. It has only been our state seal since 1780. But for some, it has now become a symbol of oppression and must be taken down and changed, just a year before the 400th anniversary of the birth of the Massachusetts Colony.

Mass State / Twitter
Mass State / Twitter

The seal has a blue shield with an Algonquian Native American who is holding a bow and arrow. The arrow is pointing down, signifying peace. A white star is also within the shield, although there is no information to explain the star's symbolic meaning.

Surrounding the blue shield is a blue banner symbolizing the Blue Hills of Canton, Milton and Quincy. A Latin phrase is on the banner: Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem, translated as "By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty."

Finally, and this is the part that seems to threaten some local tribes members here in 2019, a military crest. It's a bent arm holding a sword overhead. This is to remind us that it was through the American Revolution that our independence was won.

"It's coded in a certain way by someone telling our community members who they should be, versus our community members saying this is who we are, and this what we value," said Jean-Luc Pierite of the North American Indian Center of Boston in an interview with Fox 25.

Bob Dumas of Fox 25 Boston seems to have slipped in a completely ignorant understanding of the seal.

Dumas wrote, "Most people probably don't know the symbols on the Massachusetts state flag. For tens of thousands of residents, however, the official seal of the state recalls memories from a troubling past. It features a Native American warrior with someone holding a sword over his head."

It seems to me that the Howard Zinn fanclub wants to tear open old wounds and allow infections of resentment and division to carry the day wherever and whenever opportunity presents itself.

The sword does not now, and was never meant to somehow represent a reminder of white people's dominance over Native Americans. That is an ugly and senseless lie, promulgated by people whose agenda should be duly noted for the sake of vigilance.

The sword in our State Seal is instead a reminder that British tyranny was defeated here.

It was, afte rall, the British throne who took over the Plymouth Colony by force in 1686 and then tore up (through blatant disregard) the sworn agreement between Governor Bradford and Sachem chief Massasoit.

The Plymouth Colony pilgrims had very few disputes with the local natives until the next wave of settlers came with great disregard for local rule and agreements with the natives, the most infamous being King Philip's War.

The British throne saw fit to seize control of the new colony in Massachusetts when newer settlers began ambitious trades in the West Indies and back in Europe which caught the attention of the watchful English, threatening the British Empire's already hurting market share.

Bradford and Massasoit had established a trust and a peace that lasted much longer than any period of peace back in "civilization," a.k.a. Europe.

I certainly hope political correctness will not bow to ignorance and needlessly shame us to change the long-standing state seal of which we can all be proud.

Ken Pittman is the host of The Ken Pittman Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Contact him at ken.pittman@townsquaremedia.com and follow him on Twitter @RadioKenPittman. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author. 

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