A.K.A.: A typical justification for white people using the n-word & other racial slurs.
In January 1863, 40 Wailaki men were captured by members of the California Volunteer Infantry (Second Regiment), who were given orders to escort their Indian captives to the Round Valley reservation. However, Captain Douglas, leading the group, had previously written in a letter to his superior, “these Indians should be punished, as they are, and according to all reports always were, bad Indians,” and indeed later reported to authorities that the Wailaki men “took cold and died” on the journey. The Humboldt Times wrote,
knowing them as we do, the animosity existing between these Indians and the whites inhabiting the region of the Humboldt mail route, and the numerous depredations supposed to have been committed by them, we suspect the “cold” they died with was mainly cold lead.
Lucy Young (1842-1945; shown below), a Wailaki woman who was living at Fort Seward at the time and had relatives among the men killed, tells a story consistent with the Humboldt Times’ suspicion (Young has left extensive accounts of Wailaki history, which you can find in part at: 1, 2, 3, 4).
Young claims that the men were systematically shot and burned. She is quoted as saying (the quote is from a transcription of an oral history published in a 1941 edition of the California Historical Society Quarterly):
At last I come home. Mother at Fort Seward. Before I get there, I see big fire in lots down timber and treetops. Same time awful funny smell. I think someone get lots of wood. I go on to house. Everybody crying. Mother tell me, “All our men killed now.” She say white men there, others come from Round Valley, Humboldt County too, kill our old uncle, Chief Lassic, and all other men. Stood up about forty [Indian] in a row with rope around neck. “What’s this for?” Chief Lassic say. “To hang you dirty dogs,” white men tell it. “Hanging, that’s dogs death,” Chief Lassic say. “We done nothing to be hung for. Must die, shoot us.” So they shoot. All our men. Then build fire with wood and brush. [Indian] been cut for days. Never know it their own funeral fire they fix. Build big fire, burn all them bodies. That’s funny smell I smell before I get to house. Make hair raise on back of my neck. Make sick stomach too.
As Young recounts, Chief Lassik’s band were those who were killed. Chief Lassik was a well-respected warrior and leader, who fought against both federal troops & California militias in the Bald Hills War. During this time, the state of California was reimbursing paramilitary groups for their efforts by the Indian scalp, and allowing all woman & child hostages to be taken as slaves. Chief Lassik and his men patrolled vast areas of Humboldt County, fighting against this violence and defending Indian lands. Indeed, Chief Lassik’s band led the attack on the perpetrators of the 1860 massacre of 80 Wiyot women and children at Tuluwat (though unfortunately only injuring the massacre’s leader, Corp. Larrabee).
Forced to surrender at Fort Baker in 1862, Chief Lassik, his 40 men, and 212 other Indians were imprisoned in corrals on the Samoa Peninsula in Humboldt Bay (near present-day Eureka) until they were boated north to the Smith River reservation with 600 more Indians. Soon after, Chief Lassik led an uprising and helped 300 Indians to escape the reservation. He and his band returned to their homelands and continued to fight until they were captured and killed.
Treating oppressors with the same kindness and care that you’d show the oppressed wont actually do anything and is based around this whole “being nice as liberal praxis” thing that developed as a reactionary force in opposition to the social justice crowd
“Man has the right to deal with his oppressors by devouring their palpitating hearts.” - Jean-Paul Marat