The cost of Imperial Cultural Arrogance has cost the human race untold informational wealth. When the Europeans first entered Africa, and then the Americas, they had before them a thousand cultural petri dishes, societies with all manner of political and social philosophies that we could have learned from.
I read once that the hopi didn’t understand our concept of democracy, as they didn’t believing in leaving a disaffected minority. When something was voted on, it was wrangled until everyone agreed.
Some cultures allowed women leaders. Some cultures simple HAD women leaders. Many weren’t particularly hierarchal, but maintained what we’d call socialist or communist tendencies. Some tribes practiced something called “counting coup,” where they didn’t set out to kill their enemies, but trick them. Knock them unconscious and steal their horses, or simply steal by stealth. This was the mark of a true and noble warrior. Any fool could kill.
So many potential sources of data about different cultural norms. Yet when the Christian Europeans encountered them, all they could think was “naked savages.”
It’s a fucking crime against knowledge and human understanding. And, yes, it still pisses me off today.