In the winter of 1985 I was driving through the Mojave Desert with a friend, talking about our apparent need for new river gear. As we passed the Twenty Nine Palms Marine Base, a man unexpectedly appeared on the side of the road selling used ammo cans. My friend and I laughed wildly and quickly came to realize that the moment was "All In A Days' Karma". This blog contains the occasional ramblings of a died-in-the-wool westerner who loves seeing, understanding, and being alive upon these landscapes. I cherish the moments of bliss and irony that come to all of us as we explore the planet and its residents (and perhaps visitors) in the short time we are here.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Taos, New Mexico - The Renaming of the City's Kit Carson Memorial Park

Kit Carson
An interesting row has blossomed in Taos, New Mexico regarding the name on the city park. It was recently changed from Kit Carson Memorial Park to Red Willow Park. The Albuquerque Journal ran a bang-up article about the fracas here. (You might have to answer a silly question to read the article and see the photographs).

I read the book mentioned, "Blood and Thunder," by Hampton Sides and found it to be a fair treatment of all sides involved. I liked the book and highly recommend it if you like Western history. It is not biased toward any one side.

Atrocities were committed on both sides of the "Indian Wars." Kit Carson was genuinely conflicted about how to deal with the Native peoples of the US. It is a complex issue.

Perhaps the tribes who advocated for the name change can issue some kind of statement to the effect that the name change was not undertaken to demean or denigrate Kit Carson per se, but meant only to remove the controversy from the name of the park. Kit Carson did some things to promote the good of Native Americans and using selected deeds from his life serves only to forget the rich and complex history involved with this time period. Read the book!

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