"on account of the feud"

April 14, 2008 - Monday 

~from the Adventures
of Huckleberry Finn~Mark Twain

"Did you want to kill him, Buck?"
    "Well, I bet I did."
    "What did he do to you?"
    "Him?  He never done nothing to me."
    "Well, then, what did you want to kill him for?"
    "Why, nothing---only it's on account of the feud."
    "What's a feud?"
    "Why, where was you raised?  Don't you know what a feud is?"
    "Never heard of it before---tell me about it."
    "Well," says Buck, "a feud is this way:  A man has a quarrel with another man, and kills him; then that other man's brother kills him; then the other brothers, on both sides, goes for one another; then the cousins chip in----and by and by everybody's killed off, and there ain't no more feud.  But it's kind of slow, and takes a long time."
    "Has this one been going on long, Buck?"
    "Well, I should reckon!  It started thirty years ago, or som'ers along there.  There was trouble 'bout something, and then a lawsuit to settle it; and the suit went agin one of the men, and so he up and shot the man that won the suit---which he would naturally do, of course.  Anybody would."
    "What was the trouble about, Buck?---land?
    "I reckon maybe---I don't know."
    ""Well, who done the shooting?  Was it a Grangerford or a Shepherdson?"
    "Laws, how do I know?  It was so long ago."
    "Don't anybody know?"
    "Oh, yes, pa knows, I reckon and some of the other old people; but they don't know now what the row was about in the first place."

Does this explain why violence of any kind continues anywhere....from  gangs to the mafia to the Middle East....?  The human mind is complicated and mostly predictable. 

Must this be our plight....our status quo?  It is the stuff of books, for sure.  Can the chains of our pasts be liberated, can our neighbors not be the enemy,  can we build bridges by asking the right questions? 

We must keep discussions of all subjects alive.....our pasts are essential to our identity....our tomorrows can be different from our yesterdays... 

from Gypsy Mama....the idealist...the dreamer

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