Welcome back to the CGS Blog. In this episode, we are discussing something near and dear to my heart, the weirdness that is Massachusetts. The Commonwealth has a checkered past, you guys. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more angry group of people than anyone who lives in this rocky, miserable hellscape with recently good sports teams. Unfortunately, being thoroughly annoyed by everything isn’t the only quality my home state has been saddled with.
Massachusetts has a pretty nasty reputation for racism and it’s not without precedence. From the arrival of the pilgrims to the bussing crisis of the mid 70s, there’s been some really fucking shitty behavior from a state that holds some of the world’s most prestigious universities. I’m not going to get into why that might be because frankly, as any fan of this show is aware, I’m a goddamn moron. I only mention the racism because we discuss a shameful atrocity of early Massachusetts history known as King Phillip’s War.
This war was fought by a number of tribes in Massachusetts, in an effort to oust the settlers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. It was led by Chief Metacom, known to the settlers as King Phillip. The crux of the war rested on England imposing sovereignty on what was already a collection of sovereign nations. While tribes fought on both sides of this conflict, the fact remains that the English took lands away from the people who lived on them because they believed they were superior to the natives because… white folks, am I right?
This is not a history lesson. This is not a social commentary. I’m not trying to come off as woke here. What I am trying to say, is that the racism didn’t end, it just changed its manifestation. There is a belief that part of the Bridgewater Triangle rests on an “Indian Burial Ground”. This trope is seen in a lot of scary stories. We might think it’s harmless but when you think about it, it’s pretty fucked up. Why are Native American burial grounds such a target for weird happenings? I know that other stories use settlements built on cemeteries as the explanation for supposed hauntings but how many times have you heard the term “Indian Burial Ground”? It just seems shitty to me. It’s not bad enough that the indigenous tribes of America were resettled, oppressed, and/or nearly wiped out, now their sacred lands are basically a punchline when shit goes sideways. “My pipes froze and my microwave caught fire, I swear this house is built on an indian burial ground”. Fuck that.
I’m not trying to shame anyone but after talking through this episode, it made me realize just how casually we use terms that are rooted in racism, intentional or not. I don’t know how we fix it. Change takes a lot of time but it requires some effort on our part too. I’m certainly not perfect and I don’t think anyone else is. One thing is certain though, I’m going to try and be a lot more aware of the clichés I use and I’m definitely blaming all my supernatural problems on the various curses I’ve picked up from people I’ve blocked on Twitter. I just hope “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush” or I have some tweets I need to delete.