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Old 08-11-2019, 10:09 PM
Wesley Clark is offline
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Why are there latinos in America but not native americans


The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.

But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?

For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent? Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:29 PM
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Latinos are Native Americans, often enough.

Africa and India are not separate from Europe; it's all the Old World, and they shared their plagues.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:33 PM
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Latinos are Native Americans, often enough.
No, it's the opposite. Latinos are Europeans. That's why they didn't die out from European diseases; they were the ones who brought them over.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:35 PM
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Latinos are Native Americans, often enough.

Africa and India are not separate from Europe; it's all the Old World, and they shared their plagues.
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No, it's the opposite. Latinos are Europeans. That's why they didn't die out from European diseases; they were the ones who brought them over.
I'd say you're both right. Interbreeding and whatnot.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:35 PM
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:35 PM
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There are also quite a lot of Native Americans still here. Death rates were high; but the population as a whole was not "wiped out".
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:36 PM
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No, it's the opposite. Latinos are Europeans. That's why they didn't die out from European diseases; they were the ones who brought them over.
I thought caucasians brought the diseases and latinos were native to latin america and the southwest, while indians were native to the northeast, south and midwest area.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:38 PM
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Eric is a Paiute Indian. He is a damn good dart player and helped us win multiple championships. Native Americans have not died off. A lot of them around where I live.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:51 PM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.
Various diseases introduced from Europe and Africa hit over time. It wasn't something that happened immediately, but that kind of death rate occurred over a period of decades or centuries.

The people of the New World were particularly vulnerable to these diseases because they had been isolated for 15,000+ years and lacked the resistance to them that Europeans and Africans had built up through exposure and genetic adaptations.

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But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?
Most Latinos are mestizos, descended from both Europeans and Native Americans. They would have inherited the resistance to disease of their European ancestors, and their Native American ancestors would have been those who had more natural resistance and survived the European diseases.


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For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent? Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
The diseases in question are not European diseases, they are Old World diseases, and many are prevalent throughout Eurasia and Africa. Some tropical diseases like malaria and yellow fever were just as deadly to Europeans who went to Africa as they were to Native Americans when they were introduced to the Americas. But in general, human populations throughout the Old World were resistant to diseases that Native Americans were vulnerable to, and didn't suffer the same kind of mortality. However, some isolated populations such as those in Pacific Islands also suffered high mortality when exposed to foreign diseases.

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Old 08-11-2019, 10:58 PM
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I thought caucasians brought the diseases and latinos were native to latin america and the southwest, while indians were native to the northeast, south and midwest area.
Are you serious? Where does Latino as a term even come from? Latin? Which is from Europe. You do know that Hispanic is derived from Spain correct? C’mon now...

As to why? Genetics is a thing. The new world had nowhere near the genetic diversity as the old world. I’m not a anthropologist but I’m pretty sure not too much genetic diversity came over from Siberia.

Last edited by octopus; 08-11-2019 at 10:59 PM.
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:01 PM
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I thought caucasians brought the diseases and latinos were native to latin america and the southwest, while indians were native to the northeast, south and midwest area.
To be clear, "Latinos" can be any race, including Caucasian, Native American, or sub-Saharan African, or any combination of these (or other races). However, in contrast to settlement patterns in English colonies, much colonization of Spanish colonies in the Americas was by men who came without wives and took Native American women as partners, resulting in a "mestizo" or mixed population, many of whom resemble Native Americans in appearance.

Different Latin American countries had different settlement patterns. Some countries like Costa Rica and Argentina are more heavily Caucasian, others like Guatemala and Bolivia have a stronger indigenous element, while African ancestry is prevalent in the Caribbean region.
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:05 PM
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And "Latin American" refers to those people from countries speaking a language derived from Latin, in particular Spanish (in many countries) and Portuguese (in Brazil). (Technically it could also refer to French, but no one refers to Quebecois as "Latin Americans.)
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:07 PM
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Latinos are not necessarily indigenous people. Most Latinos actually are white. Wiki has a long article about white people of Latino origin : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_...tino_Americans
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:46 PM
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Eric is a Paiute Indian. He is a damn good dart player and helped us win multiple championships. Native Americans have not died off. A lot of them around where I live.
And some of them look nothing like a "movie indian", both because a lot of movie indians were actually Andalusians (specially in spaghetti westerns) and because of mixed ancestry. One of my coworkers in Miami was a blondish Seminole with a lot of Scots-Irish ancestry; three of his parents (divorced, remarried) were members of the tribal council at the time, we're not talking about someone who merely claimed an Indian princess twenty generations ago.
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Old 08-12-2019, 12:57 AM
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Old 08-12-2019, 01:05 AM
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There's 33 million Native Americans, identified as coming from Mayan, Olmec, Zapotec and so on tribes just in Mexico.

That's more people than most countries have inhabitants.

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Old 08-12-2019, 01:12 AM
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As to why? Genetics is a thing. The new world had nowhere near the genetic diversity as the old world. Iím not a anthropologist but Iím pretty sure not too much genetic diversity came over from Siberia.
Animal domestication was probably a factor also. Pre-Columbian Americans didn't have cattle, pigs, sheep, goats, or horses - and those animals represented a major source of diseases which crossed over to their owners.
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Old 08-12-2019, 01:27 AM
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Old 08-12-2019, 02:33 AM
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But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?
As already pointed out, quite a few (though not all) Latinos have Native ancestry.

Also, the "southwest" still has some Native groups that are relatively large, like the Navajo nation and the Hopi. There are also somewhat smaller but still existing groups like the Pima (whose lands extend into both the US and Mexico). So by no means were the Natives in the southwest "wiped out".

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For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent?
Because they'd had prior exposure to many of the diseases in Europe - as pointed out, they weren't "European diseases" so much as Old World diseases. In addition, Africa had diseases the Europeans had not been exposed to previously so in that case it was often the Europeans who became sick and/or died, not the Africans.

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Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
Same reason as for Africa.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:12 AM
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Also, the "southwest" still has some Native groups that are relatively large, like the Navajo nation and the Hopi. .
Not only the Southwest, of course.

Here's a list of just the federal or state recognized tribes, for the USA alone. I don't see a list for all of the Americas; but it would be much longer. And that's not a complete list even for the USA, as it's only the officially recognized tribes.
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Old 08-12-2019, 10:07 AM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.

But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?

For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent? Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
You quote some fascinating statistics, I'd love to know their source.

I live in Arizona, which has a substantial population of Native American people. There is the massive Navajo Nation, the Hopi, and even one of the smaller Apache reservations.

I, myself, am one-eighth Alaskan Native.


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Old 08-12-2019, 10:29 AM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.
Germs are not the only way that Native Americans were killed off. I'd be really surprised that it represented 95% of the deaths.

Forcing Native Americans off their lands, killing their food supply, and just flat out killing them whenever the opportunity arose were quite popular whenever the Native Americans were living in places that might be profitable to a European imperialist.
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Old 08-12-2019, 10:50 AM
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Germs are not the only way that Native Americans were killed off. I'd be really surprised that it represented 95% of the deaths.
According to Wikipedia

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[Scholars] now believe that widespread epidemic disease, to which the natives had no prior exposure or resistance, was the primary cause of the massive population decline of the Native Americans....
The scope of the epidemics over the years was tremendous, killing millions of peopleópossibly in excess of 90% of the population in the hardest hit areasóand creating one of "the greatest human catastrophe in history, far exceeding even the disaster of the Black Death of medieval Europe".
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:18 AM
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The first faulty premise has been addressed already: latinos/hispanics are not a subset of native people.

But also, a huge part of why there seem to be few Native Americans around is that as recently as the 70s the US government was stealing Native American children from their families in order to place them with good, white, families and intentionally kill off native culture and identity.
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:30 AM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.

But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?
Smallpox was every bit as bad in Central America as it was in the current US. It's little to do with disease resistance.

The simple fact is that Spanish colonies have more natives because Spain didn't kill/exterminate them all like we did in America. Spain decided to rule over them like a conquered enemy, letting them keep their existing society, but stealing economic output. By contrast, the US kept forcefully expelling them from their habitat until they mostly died out from attrition.

I don't really know why Spain took a different tack. Certainly it wasn't out of mercy. I suspect the Central American civilizations were already a hierarchical society with centralized power structures, so it was easy to say "your king is dead; now your grain taxes go to our king". People were already used to that, so it worked.
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:43 AM
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Just to clear up some terminology that is confusing to a lot of people:

Latino: refers to geography, i.e. "latino" people are people who are from Latin American countries.

Hispanic: refers to language, i.e. "hispanic" people are people who speak Spanish.

A person can be latino but not hispanic, or hispanic but not latino, or both, or neither.

That is all. Please continue.
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:48 AM
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Germs are not the only way that Native Americans were killed off. I'd be really surprised that it represented 95% of the deaths.

Forcing Native Americans off their lands, killing their food supply, and just flat out killing them whenever the opportunity arose were quite popular whenever the Native Americans were living in places that might be profitable to a European imperialist.
Smallpox in a population like the new world had proved to be devastating. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hist...n_the_Americas

I actually wonder how bad a reintroduction of that virus to the current world would look.
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Old 08-12-2019, 12:07 PM
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A huge percentage of native American people were already dead from exposure to European diseases before colonization. Traders and explorers brought those diseases, in the 17th century. The history of the Americas would have been very different if the population hadn't already been decimated when the colonists arrived.

This is not to say that Europeans were otherwise blameless, obviously not. But disease did most of the work for them.

The history of Latin America (colonized by Iberians) is different for several large cultural reasons. One, as already stated, is that generally families did not emigrate, only men, who then intermarried with native women. Another is Catholicism, which had different ideas about non-Christians than did Protestantism. It was perfectly acceptable to forcibly baptize all ages from newborn on up, and once baptized they were saved souls. Versus Protestantism, in which most sects repudiated infant baptism and required consent. This sounds better but in practice, it led to the dehumanizing and subsequent murder of the godless natives.

Spain and Portugal skipped the Enlightenment. They brought a medieval worldview to Latin America.
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Old 08-12-2019, 12:51 PM
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The simple fact is that Spanish colonies have more natives because Spain didn't kill/exterminate them all like we did in America. Spain decided to rule over them like a conquered enemy, letting them keep their existing society, but stealing economic output. By contrast, the US kept forcefully expelling them from their habitat until they mostly died out from attrition.

I don't really know why Spain took a different tack. Certainly it wasn't out of mercy. I suspect the Central American civilizations were already a hierarchical society with centralized power structures, so it was easy to say "your king is dead; now your grain taxes go to our king". People were already used to that, so it worked.

I suspect the "Why" is right in what you posted and I highlighted. My impression is that the Spanish folks who came over to the Americas did so with the intent of becoming rich, allowing them to live like kings when they went back to Spain. Whatever permanent settlements they created were secondary to this purpose, and only gradually evolved as places that they actually lived, largely because lots of them didn't get rich enough to move back to Spain. Consider the image of the Spanish Treasure Galleon carrying tons of gold back to Spain. Keeping the people on the land helped with extracting this wealth; none of the Spaniards wanted to do the mining work themselves.

The French and English settlements were very different. They came with their families, with the intent of creating new homes almost from the beginning. What things they did export to Europe were a means to an end - they raised money to support the colonies, the colonies weren't seen merely as a source of revenue. They sent pelts, wood and tobacco, and brought back gold and manufactured goods. Thus, taking the land was the whole point.
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Old 08-12-2019, 01:10 PM
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Spain decided to rule over them like a conquered enemy, letting them keep their existing society, but stealing economic output.
I don't think this is the best description. Spain did sometimes allow local regimes to stay in place but it was only seen as a short term situation. The policy was that local rulers could remain in token command in order to enforce Spanish orders. But they were displaced as soon as sufficient Spaniards had arrived on the scene to eliminate the need for local administrators and enforcers.

In Mexico, for example, the Spanish abolished the Aztec regime within two years of first contact. In Peru, the Incan regime was abolished after only a year.
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Old 08-12-2019, 03:07 PM
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I don't think this is the best description. Spain did sometimes allow local regimes to stay in place but it was only seen as a short term situation. The policy was that local rulers could remain in token command in order to enforce Spanish orders. But they were displaced as soon as sufficient Spaniards had arrived on the scene to eliminate the need for local administrators and enforcers.
True, I was referring more to the non-ruling class. They largely escaped extermination and land theft; they just got new Spanish administrators, enforcers, husbands, etc.
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:59 PM
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A huge percentage of native American people were already dead from exposure to European diseases before colonization. Traders and explorers brought those diseases, in the 17th century. The history of the Americas would have been very different if the population hadn't already been decimated when the colonists arrived.
The 17th?
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:21 PM
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It was perfectly acceptable to forcibly baptize all ages from newborn on up, and once baptized they were saved souls. Versus Protestantism, in which most sects repudiated infant baptism and required consent. This sounds better but in practice, it led to the dehumanizing and subsequent murder of the godless natives.
As has been alluded to, the Spanish incorporated the conquered peoples into their societies. They might have been subject to forced labor, or form an underclass, but they were recognized members of the same community as the conquerors. In contrast, in English colonies they were considered to belong to separate nations, outside of civil society. They would either be pushed out of the settled areas, or corralled into reservations where they would be kept separate.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:41 PM
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Germs are not the only way that Native Americans were killed off. I'd be really surprised that it represented 95% of the deaths.

Forcing Native Americans off their lands, killing their food supply, and just flat out killing them whenever the opportunity arose were quite popular whenever the Native Americans were living in places that might be profitable to a European imperialist.
Disease wiped out the majority, and you are correct that there was a determined effort at genocide for those who remained. It's one of the most shameful actions in the history of our country. Slavery gets the most attention, but there was a systematic effort to wipe out every last Native American almost from the earliest colonial times. The Second Amendment was written specifically to legitimize the formation of citizen militias to assist in accomplishing just that end.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:53 PM
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True, I was referring more to the non-ruling class. They largely escaped extermination and land theft; they just got new Spanish administrators, enforcers, husbands, etc.
It was a pretty big shift. The locals saw their government abolished, their religion eliminated, their military disbanded, their language replaced, their economy transformed, their city torn down, and the majority of their people dead. The society that existed in 1528 was very different from the society that had existed in 1518.
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Old 08-13-2019, 01:03 AM
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For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa
Smallpox did quite a number on the Khoe-khoen of the Cape in 1713 and 1755, whereas the east coast Bantu had had contact with Arab traders for centuries, and also cowpox was endemic there but not in the Khoe-khoen cattle, so they were likely quite resistant (although they were affected by later epidemics).
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Old 08-13-2019, 02:02 AM
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As has been alluded to, the Spanish incorporated the conquered peoples into their societies. They might have been subject to forced labor, or form an underclass, but they were recognized members of the same community as the conquerors.
IOW, the Spaniards and Portuguese simply continued the same policies which had taken place on the Iberian Peninsula since the Roman conquest, combined with that new idea that "everybody must be the same religion as their ruler."

Musing: I'm not sure why, but a lot of people never seem to realize that this "convert everybody" thing was a Renaissance concept, not a medieval one. Not every concept that's new turns out to be particularly good, and sometimes a concept which works well for a certain culture has different consequences in a different one.
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Old 08-13-2019, 05:45 AM
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Musing: I'm not sure why, but a lot of people never seem to realize that this "convert everybody" thing was a Renaissance concept, not a medieval one.
In Spain, maybe. But it was definitely a large component of the mediaeval Baltic Crusades.
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Old 08-13-2019, 06:00 AM
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No maybe about it, and it was a general novelty through SW Europe.
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Old 08-13-2019, 06:04 AM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.

But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?
Many Latinos are mestizos, a term for those of mixed European and Native American descent. They're the descendants of Native Americans who survived those diseases, and of Europeans who already had genetic resistance.

From what I can tell, in most Latin American countries, there are people of "pure" European descent, mestizos, and native... In some countries, Europeans are the most numerous. In others mestizos are. In none are the Native Americans the most numerous.

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For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent? Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
Because both Africans and Indians had contact with Europeans beforehand. The Black Death supposedly traveled from India to Europe, but also to China, Korea, and Japan, and when it reached Egypt (by land) and Eastern Africa (by sea, as there was a lot of contact between the Arab world and Kenya) would have ravaged Africa. The survivors were those genetically resistant. The same could be said of smallpox (which struck China before the Three Kingdoms period, with the population declines having an enormous impact and playing a role in the rise of the Yellow Turban Rebellion). If that smallpox epidemic happened the first time during the 1800s or so, the history of China would be remarkably different (it likely would have been conquered by Europeans).

Groups wiped out by diseases generally lived in the "New World" without sustained indirect contact with the "Old World". So I suspect many Australian Aborigines were also killed by plague.

Ironically Africa was the home to many "tropical" diseases, which are carried only by local mosquitoes. So while European diseases weren't having much impact on the already genetically resistant Africans, many Europeans were falling to exotic diseases. (And then it turns out, for some reason, that South American mosquitoes can carry some of these diseases...)
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Old 08-13-2019, 11:18 AM
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(And then it turns out, for some reason, that South American mosquitoes can carry some of these diseases...)
Interesting article on that subject.

For the OP( and others that might be interested ), you might want to read this survey article from 1993 by Linda Newson on the demographic collapse in the Americas. It's the best summary I read back in the day, though I'm a decade or two behind on current research . In short it was multi-factorial and varied a great deal depending on geography and in time( and related cultural issues, degrees of economic exploitation, etc. ).

This was a pet topic for me at one time, but I'm manfully resisting nitpicking some of the above posts . But in general, I think in aggregate Wesley Clark you've gotten the right answer already, in short:

-It's Old World vs. New World disease, not European vs. everyone else.

-Native populations weren't completely extirpated everywhere( they were in some areas ), they just underwent a horrendous decline. Eventually some very partially recovered. About 25% of Peru's population still speak some variant of Quechua for example and unlike Guarani in neighboring Paraguay, those are mostly not dialects that have spread that far outside of indigenous populations.

Last edited by Tamerlane; 08-13-2019 at 11:22 AM.
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Old 08-13-2019, 11:33 AM
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It's Old World vs. New World disease, not European vs. everyone else.
But I think it's a reasonable shortcut to say European in discussions of this topic. The diseases may have existed in Africa and Asia as well but it was Europeans who transmitted them to the Americas and other isolated areas.

This is strong evidence against the theory that the Chinese visiting America in the 15th century. If they had, they would have brought the same diseases that the Europeans brought. But there's no evidence of any massive death toll in the Americas prior to Columbus' arrival.
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Old 08-13-2019, 12:01 PM
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But I think it's a reasonable shortcut to say European in discussions of this topic.
But the OP asked why Africans weren't impacted the same way, so the Old World/New World distinction is critical.
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Old 08-13-2019, 12:08 PM
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But I think it's a reasonable shortcut to say European in discussions of this topic. The diseases may have existed in Africa and Asia as well but it was Europeans who transmitted them to the Americas and other isolated areas.
Sure, but that is what seems to have confused the OP and I imagine he is not unique in that respect.
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Old 08-13-2019, 12:27 PM
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There are also quite a lot of Native Americans still here. Death rates were high; but the population as a whole was not "wiped out".
Correct. A large number of the immigrants/refugees we see from Central America are partly to completely indigenous. For many, Spanish isn't even their first language but we Norte Americanos pathetically lump them all together as Latinos without questioning the designation.
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Old 08-13-2019, 08:11 PM
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The native americans died off due to the diseases brought over by the europeans. I think multiple plagues hit at once and wiped out 95% of people.

But the southwest is full of latinos whose families have been here for hundreds of years. Why did they survive while the native americans were wiped out by disease?

For that matter, why didn't the native Africans get wiped out in Africa the way Indians got wiped out in the US when Europe invaded that continent? Or why didn't Indians get wiped out in India when the british invaded?
Uh, I think you have this disease thing backwards. The Africans, being the oldest, have the strongest immune systems. The diseases that decimated the new world had previously done the same thing to Europe. The African immune system gives them more protection than any other group. The American Indians were all from a very small and recent group of Asians and they have the smallest innate immune system of all the major groups. They had the least ability overcome the traditional diseases that suddenly arrived with the Europeans and Africans.

If I am not explaining the immune system correctly, I apologize, it isn't my area. I am referring to the innate immune system. As I remember it, There are about 7 components of the innate system. Each one provides the body with the ability to fight off lots of diseases. But not all. Sooner or later everyone is exposed to a disease their particular set of components can't deal with. Then you had better hope that your adaptive immune system can cope. But it isn't as effective as the innate system. Few people if any have all 7. Africans, having been at this the longest, have the most. Perhaps 4 or 5 in any individual. These are inherited. Each person in each generation has some mixture of available components from their parents. If they are lucky they will fight off the next new disease. If not, their neighbor might. As the number of components available to the population decreases, each new disease may be devastating. Europeans and Asians have fewer components than Africans. Native American Indians have fewer still. Again, that is as I understand the process. I could be messing it up, but the idea is that American Indians have fewer innate components than "older" more diverse populations. It isn't all bad. Native Americans also don't have several inherited diseases that the rest of us suffer with.
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Old 08-14-2019, 12:09 AM
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But I think it's a reasonable shortcut to say European in discussions of this topic. The diseases may have existed in Africa and Asia as well but it was Europeans who transmitted them to the Americas and other isolated areas.
However, one way they "transmitted" them was by importing slaves from Africa that brought in tropical and sometimes other diseases. Notably, the smallpox epidemic that swept through the Aztec Empire during Cortes's invasion, making his conquest easier, seems to have been brought to Mexico via an African slave coming from the West Indies.

Last edited by Colibri; 08-14-2019 at 12:10 AM.
  #48  
Old 08-14-2019, 12:26 AM
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Uh, I think you have this disease thing backwards. The Africans, being the oldest, have the strongest immune systems....



If I am not explaining the immune system correctly, I apologize, it isn't my area.
And it shows, you have it wrong. Disease resistance in populations is a function of what diseases have those populations been subject to previously (which doesn't mean "years ago and not any more", it means anybody born there is subject to them): most people from Africa, Asia and Europe were resistant to Old World diseases which caused high mortality in the New World because they were exposed to them. The Old World exceptions (MrDibble mentions one, the Khoe-khoen) are peoples who hadn't previously been exposed to whatever the disease was. The Black Plague was deadly because the populations it reached hadn't been exposed to that particular bacillum before: once enough people developed resistance to the bacillum, the Plague ended. New World diseases killed Old World people merrily, independently of where these Old World people had been born, on account of these people not having been exposed to them before. Exposure and disease resistance have got nothing to do with the length of people's family tree.

Over 98% of Spaniards are TB positive. Incidence of actual TB in Spain is below 1%, and limited to immigrants who have previously received no medical care in their whole life. The TB test checks whether someone has TB antibodies: we have them precisely because we've been exposed to the TB baccillum and our bodies have responded correctly, creating those antibodies. We're all exposed to TB now, despite most of us having never met a person who had actual tuberculosis in our whole lives. That's what's meant by "prior exposure": in our lifetimes, not in those of our ancestors.
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Last edited by Nava; 08-14-2019 at 12:30 AM.
  #49  
Old 08-14-2019, 01:05 AM
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But the OP asked why Africans weren't impacted the same way, so the Old World/New World distinction is critical.
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Sure, but that is what seems to have confused the OP and I imagine he is not unique in that respect.
Fair points.
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Old 08-14-2019, 08:27 AM
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Little to add other than that my impression (from quite a bit of reading) has also been that a great portion of indigenous populations had succumbed from imported diseases prior to 17th century colonization in Virginia and Massachusetts.
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