Tuesday, February 28, 2017

TWOsday ~ two thoughts on my mind

DAPL and racism ~  The Dakota Access Pipeline was re-routed through Standing Rock because Bismarck's residents feared it could poison their drinking water.  The Sioux are literally being forced at gunpoint to accept ecological risks that North Dakota's white residents refused.

The Tale of Two Pebbles

Many years ago in a small Indian village, a farmer owed a large sum of money to a moneylender in their village.  The old and ugly moneylender fancied the farmer’s beautiful daughter, so he proposed a bargain.  He said he would forgo the farmer’s debt if he could marry his daughter.  The farmer and his daughter were both horrified by the proposal.

So the moneylender smiled as he suggested they let providence decide the matter.  He told them he would put a black pebble and a white pebble into an empty money bag.  Then the girl would pick one pebble from the bag.  If she picked the black pebble, she would become his wife and her father’s debt would be forgiven.  If she picked the white pebble, she need not marry him and her father’s debt would still be forgiven.  If she refused to pick a pebble, her father would be thrown into jail.

They were standing on a pebble strewn path in the farmer’s field.  As they talked, the moneylender bent over to pick up two pebbles.  As he picked them up, the sharp-eyed girl noticed that he had picked up two black pebbles and put them into the bag.  He then asked the girl to pick a pebble from the bag.  The girl put her hand into the moneybag and drew out a pebble.  Without looking at it, she fumbled and let it fall onto the pebble-strewn path where it immediately became lost among all the other pebbles.

"Oh, how clumsy of me," she said.  "But never mind.  If you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked."  Since the remaining pebble is black, it must be assumed that she had picked the white one.  And since the moneylender couldn't admit his dishonesty, the girl reversed what seemed an impossible situation.

Moral of the Story:  Most complex problems do have a solution, if we think it through.

1 comment:

Helen's Book Blog said...

What a wonderful story! And the Dakota pipeline situation is just tragic. I don't see a good solution as the Sioux don't have much power in this situation.