This was my response to a link posted to me by a friend:
It frustrates me that there are so many IGNORANT people out there. I don't mean just plain "dumb." But really willfully IGNORANT of the history they never bothered to read, but talk about with such brass balls authority. They would look stupid if only most of their audience weren't as equally dumb as rocks. Here how my response went, but edited and proofread a bit this time:
Haha -- I guess we "liberals" are even dumber than the blockheads portrayed in the film. Problem is, if this is a liberal "fantasy," let us have it. Because as simplistic as the bad guys were allegedly portrayed, greeting the natives with calvary, troops armed with machine guns, and forced relocation is pretty much ACTUALLY what went down in American history.
So what about this movie is so unrealistic again? Or how were the bad guys -- we humans -- overdone? The Pequot Massacre, King Philip's War, Trail of Tears, Sand Creek Massacre, and the end of the "Indian Wars" at Wounded Knee in 1890? Are these examples too much?
For a guy who thinks the bad guys' attitude and actions were overdone, he sure is ignorant of actual history, when "we" did EXACTLY what they planned to do to "them" AGAIN in the film. In fact, far worse. What exactly is so far fetched?
It's a "liberal fantasy" to be moral? If I had been an American Army regular in 1890 with my machine gun turret trained down on Sioux tents from atop the hill and I decided to turn it on own soldiers -- or just not participate -- I would have been probably seen as a traitor at the time.
During the My Lai massacre in Vietnam, though, it was a helicopter gunner who pointed his machine gun at his own commander and told him to "Cease and desist" from continuing to shoot the civilians in the village. Is he a "traitor?" To some jarheads and neo-fascists, sure. But to most good Americans, such a soldier represents some degree of progress, as someone who doesn't define right and wrong by just his "orders."
Yeah, Doc Zero, sometimes your country, "your" people can be in the wrong. It's not your patriotic duty to be a fucking lemming -- it might even be your patriotic duty to protest, or even tell your commanding officer to go fuck himself because you refuse to kill innocent civilians. Those people aren't the cowards or traitors that the blind patriot would label them -- no, those are the people who have blue balls of steel.
Avatar is no more "fantasy" than Metacomet's example in 1675, the tragedy of the "Trail of Tears" in 1838 under Andrew Jackson's policy and enforced by US Army guns, or the more uplifting example of Warrant Officer Hugh C. Thompson, who reduced the number killed at My Lai by turning his sights on his "own" side and was later rewarded with a medal, years later. His commanding officer, Lieutenant William Calley, went down in history with the rest of the cardboard bad guys, because that's exactly what he had become when he started the machine gunning, rape, and murder of unarmed civilians.
Does this make me some "whiny" liberal? That I'm on the side of the scientist crying over the "blue monkeys" who want to save their "tree" in Avatar? It's a "suicide fantasy" to sometimes realize YOUR SIDE is in the wrong? That same argument -- that criticism of one's country, countrymen, or soldiers is tantamount to the desire to destroy the nationalist "self" -- is what leads to gas chambers, killing fields, and mass machete murders.
Stopping the destruction of a people, or the environment, or the committing of some other immoral act isn't something AGAINST "our" interest -- it's an acknowledgement of history, of the fact that some moral prices are too high to pay, no matter what the gain. It's a mere acknowledgement that we're actually LEARNING from our past.
THAT. IS. THE. POINT. OF. THE. MOVIE.
The "psychotic" officer portrayed in Avatar was no more crazed than any number of assholes in history who justified their actions by just "following orders." Avatar is no fucking liberal "fantasy." The real history that the movie channels ALL TOO WELL is as real as the My Lai woman whose brain was blown out onto the ground from the back of her head, through her mouth:
That shit is as real as it gets, dude.
Support that? Even if it's done by my country's soldiers? My fellow citizens?
No way. And that doesn't make me a traitor, nor does that mean I live in a fantasy world.