I woke up early this morning unable to get back to sleep and had a weird thought.
My ancestors have fought in every major conflict of the past 2000 years, including nearly every single regional war. This includes The Gulf, Korea, World War 1 and 2, the Civil War, Spanish-American war.
In more than one instance, a high ranking military official has specifically noted exemplary courage in one of my ancestors sufficient to record it permanently. This includes reversing a retreat in the Civil War with a bugle call, protecting an officer's hut on top of a mountain from half of North Korea during the Korean War, destroying a Vietnamese supply tunnel that was supplying ambush troops with munitions, etc. etc. etc.
Some general or colonel wrote down in his journal something to the effect of "Private Blakemore personally volunteered to crawl down inside Viet Cong tunnel with a grenade to demolish it," that sort of thing. It may have even ended up in the hometown newspaper as a war report or interest piece.
In all of these situations, somehow when the war ended my ancestors were overlooked or the paperwork was forgotten when it was time to give out the medals. They were almost never honored or remembered. There are guys who win medals in wars for hiding out until they end. My ancestors, often found right in the thick of the fighting, always seem to achieve anonymity. They're the guys who never get any medals, commendations or particular recognition for these wars they are always fighting in.
Judging all of that with my own experience in the military added to it, I can reach only one conclusion.
Nobody awards medals to Neanderthal slaves. It is their place to be on the front lines of combat. Medals only go to humans and their friends. The Neanderthal is regarded as a shock troop who is there to keep humans from getting hit by bullets. It doesn't matter if they defeat half the enemy army with their bare hands, they are not regarded as combatants, they are seen as tools of strategy. This implies that all Sapiens unconsciously identify and treat Neanderthals as a fundamentally different kind of biped who is subject to sanctions as a person they would never dream of applying to one of their own kind. All of it subconscious and completely autonomic right down to their limbic cortex.
I could not think of any other explanation for this phenomenon.
You know how it is in the early morning. You don't know if sleep deprivation has given you some fundamental insight or you are just semi-delirious from being tired. This felt like it was a revelation when I had it.