Have you ever been treated unfairly? Have you ever been treated like you have no rights at all? Most people have, but few of them have been treated as badly as Victor and his friends were in “Ice Man” written by Elmore Leonard, just because they are Native Americans. “Ice Man” is fiction. In “Ice Man” the narrator is an unknown 3rd person narrator. He does not enter the characters minds, he only tells us what they say and what they do. And therefore he must be a person that does not take part in the actual scene, but he must be there. Because he is a 3rd person narrator, his opinions are objective and therefore trustworthy.
Victor is one of the main characters in “Ice Man”. Victor is an Indian, or you may call it a Native American, from the Mimbreno Apache tribe. Victor is a bull rider. He rides bulls for money is competitions and this is seen in the lines 6-7 on page 1.
“He won Top Bull Rider, 4. 000 dollars and a new saddle at the All-Indian National Rodeo in Palm Springs”. Victor is also a fearless bull rider, because he looks into the eyes of a bull to see if it still wanted to kill him, “He walked to the gate not bothering to look at the bulls, see if they still wanted to kill him”.
Line 5 on page 1. Victor has worked for a man called Kyle McCoy since he was a little boy. Working for Kyle, Victor learned how to ride a bull and feel what the bull was going to do next, this is shown on page 2 lines 6-8, “Now he was telling them what he’d learned about bulls working for Kyle McCoy since he was little a kid”. But even though he had learned a lot from Kyle, Victor had to figure out most of the things by himself. Victor is also quiet bold. When the ICE Man turns to him in the bar, he does not act scared.
He is kind of cheeky towards the ICE Man, especially when he says, “Does it mean you deliver ice to places like this one for drinks, maybe shrimp cocktails? ” which he does on page 3 lines 24-25. When the ICE Man confronts Victor and his friends about them drinking alcohol, he asks them to show him some identification that can prove that they are old enough to drink alcohol. But in the way Victor answers, “This is what it’s about, my age? ” on page 4 line 4, you can tell that Victor did not believe that ICE Man came to him because of his age, but instead because of his race.
Victor is very proud of being an Indian or Native American, and that is why he always answers ICE Man back, because he feels like he is being offended and treated unfairly. Page 5 lines 10-11, “Bring them all here to sit with their rifles, Victorio, Cochise, Geronimo…. Those guys doing whatever they wanted”, tells us that Victor looks back at the days, when the Indian chiefs could do whatever they wanted and were not tied down by any laws. ICE Man’s real name is Darryl Harris and the ICE in ICE Man stands for Immigration and Customs enforcement.
His job is to control whether immigrants have immigrated illegally or legally. In many ways ICE Man appears racist. He compares the Indians to other coloured people and says they all look pretty much the same. He also feels kind of supercilious. Page 4 lines 16-17, “The bulls buck any, or they too old? I can cite you now for tryin’ to bribe an officer of the law. ” This is one of the situations where ICE Man feels supercilious, because he thinks that Victor is bribing him, but he actually just shows ICE Man the money he had won in the contest.
ICE Man in general is a racist, multiple times he calls them “Red nigger”, and he sees nothing wrong with arresting Victor and his friends just because of their race, this is shown on page 5 line 31 when Celeste asks “The only reason being they’re Indians? ” and ICE Man answers at page 5 line 33 “What’s wrong with that? ”. The story takes place somewhere in a Mexican environment in Palm Springs, California. The environment is very much like what you see in Western movies. It is kind of old fashion.
But that does not mean that the time the story takes place in is a long time ago. On page 4 line 35, “”We’re through here”, picked up his cellphone and said…. ”. This shows us that the story takes place in a relatively modern time. The theme in this fiction is racial discrimination in USA. In the old fashion parts of America it is very easy to get repressed if you are just a little bit different. But it does not make any sense that there is so much racial discrimination in USA, because it is the country with the biggest diversity of different races.