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THE EYES OF THE GAMBLING GOD
BY C. LILLIAN A.
OU MAY SEARCH in vain did not his family live here long before through the most complete and any white man came to this country with authentic works on astronomy his astronomic and geologic ideas?
for the mention of two stars in In many respects, these Acomites, or the firmament that were at one time the Pueblo Indians, must be regarded as the eyes of a god. Astronomers will dispute most peculiar and remarkable of existing the statement and call it a “poetic legend," people. Never in historic times have they but if you will go to one of the Acomites been savages or barbarians. Gentle, happy, for authority, he will tell you it is true. contented people, they live most successThen, too, if you search over the pages of fully on the communistic plan. They are the latest geologies, you will find that the true pagans, serving the gods of their large plains east of Acoma were covered fathers, worshipping the sun and the thus by a lava flow from two volcanic cra- forces of nature, and clinging fast to old ters near by. The Acomite will dispute rites and ceremonies. Wrapped in clouds that also. He will say that it was through of superstition, which are rich in fanciful Alaka's revenge that it became so. legend, he dwells upon a height that is as inclined to think he ought to know, for populous with gods as was the Mount
The above illustration of Acoma women, while picturesque, does by no means do justice to the tribe, as some of the women, many, in fact, are physically perfect.
Olympus of the ancient Greeks. There handsome, straight and tall. The women are gods of the chase, of peace and of war, and girls adored him for his beauty and of harvest and of famine, thunder and fine manners; the men admired his skill lightning, and sun and rain and snow. and physical strength. But he would gamThey are innumerable, one for every oc- ble! Many times the Great Spirit warned casion.
him, saying: "Gamble not. It will ruin Chief among their deities was Alaka, you, and then bitter punishment will be the gambling god. He was young and upon you.” But Alaka paid no heed to the monition. For the passion was strong returned, crying out in his anger and within him. Wherever he went he met recklessness, he said: “I will put up my men who asked him to gamble, and he was eyes against anything !" not strong enough to refuse. "No," he So they gambled again. Alaka lost. He would say, “I like not to gamble.” When took out his left eye and placed it on the the men would laugh and say: "Ho! ho! table.
table. Then they continued the game. you like to gamble, but you are afraid. You Once more he lost, and he placed his right are not a god, or you would have no fear.” eye beside the left one, the sacred meal, There was not fear in Alaka's heart, but the shells and the turquoises. there was a false pride. Their twittings No longer could the Great Spirit endure and scoffings were more than he could en- it. Becoming very angry, he snatched up dure. Anger and recklessness and a de- the eyes, saying, “I will place them up termination whatever the consequence, among the stars as a warning to men foraroused him, and he replied, "Come on; I ever and ever, never to gamble.” And so will show you if I am afraid. I will make you can see Alaka's eyes in the night-sky babies of you.” And so Alaka, forgetting as a terrible example. the warning of the Great Spirit, played. At first it grieved Alaka that he had Before much time had elapsed, he lost his lost his eyes. Then his anger rose in terprecious turquoises, which were so blue rible fury, and shouting out in his rage, that they were believed to be bits of the said: “I will have my revenge. I will sky. This loss did not daunt him, and he burn up the world and all men in it.” So continued playing until all of his highly- revenged would he be that he gathered all valued shells were gone.
Because these the pitch in the world, and placing it in shells came, as they did, from the Great one great pile, set fire to it. The blaze Waters, many days' journey toward the reached the sky, and so heavy and black setting sun, so far away that none of their was the smoke that the day was as the tribe had ever been there, they were re- darkest night. The hearts of men were garded by the inland desert people as great filled with fear. Alaka would treasures. And yet Alaka would not stop. venged.
Next he gambled away his sacred meal. But the Great Spirit would not have it When Coronado and his men sought for so. He began a rain, and for days the the Seven Cities of Cibola, their object of water came in floods until the flames were search was gold and precious gems, but extinguished. more precious than these the natives re- If you will pause in your travels to-day, garded corn meal, for it was to them the fifteen miles west of Acoma, New Mexico, staff of life. When they wished to seek you will see where Alaka attempted his special favor of the gods, they offered the revenge, for at that place are miles and meal. As Alaka placed his portion of it miles of ground covered with a black subbefore the men, they laughed and said: stance resembling pitch, unlike anything "Ho! ho! you wished to make babies of in the neighborhood. And there, from the
You had better go and take lessons.” edge of the three hundred foot cliff, may Then Alaka became very enraged. For a be seen the stars that were once the eyes long time he sat in meditation. At last he of the gambling god.
THE EDITOR'S PHILOSOPHY
AS TO RACIAL PREJUDICE AND BUSINESS
N THE PHILIPPINES, the China- hatred, dormant, it is true, but ever
man is looked upon as shrewd ready to leap into flame and show itself by business man, and many a China- riot and bloodshed, brutal attacks, murman has married a Filipino
ders and lynchings. man, but the Filipino men very rarely Presumably, we are not different from marry with Chinese
In the any other people, and in Europe the lower Philippines it takes a long time for the and middle classes are only held in leash colored man to establish a footing, and through the fact that for centuries auhe must indeed be a great genius who thority has held sway, through a powerful manages to finally acquire social and
financial aristocracy, and the ruling mass business equality. In China, the Korean is so strongly entrenched that to struggle and the Japanese are scorned and scoffed against any dictum
futile. The at: the Korean publicly and the Japanese civilization of China is certainly as old as privately.
any, and yet we see that race hatred flames Yet time cures all things, and in the up at "the drop of the hat," so to speak. South of the United States the irrecon- So, then, we see that civilization has little cilable white who believed that the black or nothing to do with the case except that was born as the bondman to the Caucasian it may be that it is the remains of an anhas finally come to accept conditions, and cient, an ineradicable and irremovable while social equality is not dreamed of as barbarism, showing forth whenever the a possibility, even in the remotest future, situation becomes so tense that it can no yet the Southerner of to-day has an ethi- longer be held in the background. cal code in his treatment of the negro that Nearly every war that has ever been allows the Afro-American a happier ex- fought was brought about by business agistence than he can possibly enjoy in the gression or by a desire to over-reach inNorthern States, where intolerance is dustrially. Every revolution has been the growing as a noxious and dangerous weed. result of intolerant wage conditions and
Just a few weeks ago the citizens of the class tyranny. little hamlet near old Ticonderoga formu- Racial intolerance is the direct result of lated an indignant protest against the industrial rivalry. It is true that the quartering in their midst of the "fighting negro had little or nothing to see in the
-sixth," a crack colored regiment oratorical fire-works that preceded the of the United States Army. This pro- War of Secession. It is also true that the test was, of course, unheeded by the War negro's social condition has been amelioDepartment. It was a very mild mani- rated only in some directions, while in festation of the anti-African sentiment in others it has been made many times worse. the North.
It is not my intention to point a moral or In certain cities of the East the senti- to launch into a long story regarding a ment against the Slav and the Italian is subject that is tiresome, and that may only quite as strong as it is against the black be discussed with profit by gray-beards in other places. Everywhere there is race around the evening board. Suffice it to say that behind Harriet Beecher Stowe ago, and as time went on, climate and there glowered on the Southland the evil occupation developed the pigments in the eye of the New England manufacturer, skins and changed the conformation of who saw in the early development of steel the skull. mills and cotton factories in the South the These men of wisdom have painted lines. ultimate destruction of the big industries on their little diagrams, and from these of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachu- lines branch out the races from one censetts and the other States of the
the far tral fount. From this same fountain of Northern business and manufacturing life has come the Aryan, as well as other coterie. Sentiment, as personified by races. Back into the fountain is the Mrs. Stowe, could never have brought on trend of the races. Back to the original a war against the will of Abraham Lin- color and the original homogeneousness coln, but business waited until the psy- is the trend, and in a million years all chological moment was at hand, and then but one race of one color, speaking a volait struck! Abraham Lincoln was crumpled puk no one of to-day can possibly underas a sheet of tinsel paper.
stand, will have disappeared. And, so it has been with every other That time is too far away to be of profit war in the history of man. Sentiment in discussion, but that this leveling promounts a prancing steed and goes to the cess is going on, no one can successfully court house steps and raises the banner of deny. righteous indignation and voices in in- We see it in the assimilation of words spired oratory the cry to arms for the de- by one nation from another; we see it gofense of suffering or pillaged humanity, ing on through the process of inter-marand when the mob is crying aloud for en- riage of races, and here, in the United rollment, along comes Business, and Busi- States, we see it in the marriage of white ness knocks Sentiment in the head with women with negroes to such an extent. a stuffed club and steals her clothes, and that it was the boast recently that in a marches and blows the trumpet, equips the hundred years it would be impossible to troops and sells the powder and the uni- find a man who could say that his was forms, the cannon, the transport wagons, pure Caucasian blood.
This boast was the clothing and shoes, the food and the made by an educated negro.
Of course thousand and one other necessities that he made the time too short by many hungo to put a modern army on a war foot- dred years, but what he prophesied is likeing.
ly to come to be true. We see the levelIt is a safe bet to make that the men ing process going on, in the delimitation who have been most interested in scaring of frontiers and in the gradual decay of John Bull into a blue funk about the in- romanticism and national pride and in vasion by Germany are those who will the advance of commercialism. profit by a continuance of the ship build- It is not this theory which confronts us, ing and by the equipping of a standing but it is a deplorable condition. We know army. One can easily imagine a meeting that in some sections of this country the of the British barons of industry in re- prejudice is exceedingly strong against hearsal of the farce, “The Germans are any and all foreigners. We, of California, coming!”
know that in our large industrial centers There will be a day when racial in- the laboring element has transferred its tolerance will cease, but that day is far former fierce hatred for the Chinese race away. Its coming cannot be hastened, to the Japanese, and with much less cause. and it cannot be retarded. In order to We must, if we are students and truthappreciate the fact, all that it is necessary ful, admit the white Californian of the to do is to study the map or diagram of farm hand class, is a lazy, easy come, easy the origin of races. Scientists presume
thriftless, unreading, unthinking, that all races are descended from one root, easily prejudiced, extravagant individual. and they have gone so far as to mark the We have been given the most gloriously track of the tribes of earth they productive piece of land on the globe. We swarmed from the original fount. That have been given the best climate of the was thousands upon thousands of years whole world, and, probably because of