Columbus Day: Still a Day Worth Celebrating

columbus day4Few holidays are as “politically incorrect” as is the day that Americans reserve to commemorate the birthday of Christopher Columbus. Such is the ferocity of the smear campaign to which Columbus has been subjected for decades that he has been made into a villain among villains in the rogues’ gallery of history.

Geoffrey Symcox, of the Medieval and Renaissance Center at the University of California at Los Angeles, says of Columbus that while a “brilliant mariner,” he was nevertheless “an unrelenting social climber and self-promoter who stopped at nothing—not even exploitation, slavery, or twisting Biblical scripture—to advance his ambitions [.]”  He continues: “The fact that Columbus brought slavery, enormous exploitation or devastating diseases to the Americas” has always been ignored by scholars and laity alike, for all that mattered is that he was “the great bringer of white man’s civilization to the benighted idolatrous American continent.”

“Native American” activist Ward Churchill—the same disgraced University of Colorado professor who made national news when he referred to the thousands who lost their lives on September 11, 2001 as “little Eichmanns”—wrote that Columbus Day celebrations rank “very high” among those “expressions of non-indigenous sensibility” that “contribute to the perpetuation of genocidal policies against Indians [.]”

Russell Means, an American Indian activist, once said that next to Columbus, Hitler “looks like a juvenile delinquent.” And during the 500th year anniversary of the Columbus’s discovery of the New World, the National Council of Churches released a statement imploring Christians to abstain from celebrating.  “What represented newness of freedom, hope, and opportunity for some,” the statement read, “was the occasion for oppression, degradation and genocide for others.”

There are a few things to note about the bad press that Columbus began receiving in the second half of the 20th century.

First, this campaign against Columbus—and that’s exactly what it is, a campaign—is not inspired by any disinterested pursuit of historical accuracy.  In fact, none of this is about history at all. Rather, like so much else of what passes for “history” today, it is nothing more or less than “retrospective politics,” as the English philosopher Michael Oakeshott once labeled the enterprise of dressing up brute partisan polemics with references to “the past.”

This brings us to our next point.  A real historian should try as much as possible to resist making any moral pronouncements regarding the characters of his subjects.  Those who seek to reduce Columbus to a caricature of evil personified reduce themselves to the simplest of polemicists. And that Columbus’s critics are practically to a man and woman of the same leftist political orientation should be more than enough to establish that they seek to promote an ideological agenda.

And what is this ideological agenda?  At this juncture in our civilization, most people who pay any attention to these matters know well enough the answer to this question.

The campaign against Columbus isn’t about history, it is true, but, ultimately, it isn’t even about Columbus.

It is nothing more or less than a wholesale condemnation against Western civilization.

As “community organizer” extraordinaire Saul Alinsky knew well enough, to be successful, the organizer must concretize the abstract institutional arrangements against which he rails by giving them a face.  “The System” is too vague. The organizer, to be effective, must single out a specific target for attack.

Columbus’s detractors are the Western world’s malcontents.  In convicting this white, Christian man, Columbus, of the worst of sins, his enemies hold him up as the quintessential poster boy for all Westerners of European stock.  Columbus is merely a symbol of the brutal racial oppression upon which the West was founded.

Anyone who doubts this thesis need only consider that the same kind of charges made against Columbus—he was an “exploiter,” a “racist,” an “enslaver,” and a “genocidal murderer”—have been made by leftists against any number of people traditionally regarded as Western heroes.  Many of America’s Founders are a case in point.

The effort to discredit Columbus is of a piece with the effort to discredit Western civilization itself.  It is a part, an integral part, of a movement to demoralize Western peoples by depriving them of those of their heroes who have occupied a particularly esteemed position in their collective consciousness, those of their heroes who signify for them some of the noblest, the most essential, moments in the life of their civilization.

That there were indeed injustices visited by Europeans against the Indians is undeniable. It is no less true that to know only this is to know virtually nothing.  For now, suffice it to say that Columbus was no saint.  However, neither was he a villain.  He was a man whose vision and courage contributed immeasurably to the world, “the New World,” from which countless numbers of peoples have been reaping endless blessings for centuries.

Happy Columbus Day!

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  • 1proactive2

    Quick! Someone get word to all the people trying to get to America, especially Mexicans, that this country is very bad with a near demonic history. We don’t want anyone to be harmed by our irredeemably corrupt past. Get the word out soon!

    • boeningsol321

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    • herb benty

      They won’t listen. Obama has already assured them of citizenship, free food, assisted education ad nauseum. PLUS, they are part of the punishment whites “deserve” for seeking freedom.

      • 1proactive2

        You’re right. It’s those gubmint handouts that appeal to them, and when they begin their criminal lives here, preying on whites, blacks, gays, Asians, and anybody unlike them, they’ll most likely have the academics and Democrats making excuses for them and blaming white people. It’s worked for blacks while they murder at random for fun and profit. Can’t wait to see their Latino equivalents of Sharpton and Jackson. Stay tuned.

        • herb benty

          Mass Muslim immigration worked for the left in Europe. Obama and his Commies are duplicating them using Mexicans.

          • 1proactive2

            Bulls-eye. Some cultures are naturally government-dependent; no pride in personal independence, respect for others, personally accountable, or proud to be self-supporting.

          • herb benty

            We see eye-to-eye on that alright!

  • veritaseequitas

    “an unrelenting social climber and self-promoter who stopped at nothing—not even exploitation, slavery, or twisting Biblical scripture—to advance his ambitions…”sounds just like The Squatter-in-Chief and his loathsome bride and their despicable left wing posse.

    • izzyabby

      Leftists love to project their character flaws and deceitful methods onto others.

      This leaves them with self described, wholesome qualities like caring, concern and fairness. Who wouldn’t want all evil embodied in your enemies and pure sweetness and light reserved for oneself?

      Beware those who judge historical figures using current politically correct yardsticks…manipulation is occurring as they speak.

  • physicsnut

    yup – AlterNet says “stop saying Columbus discovered the Americas”
    but then they also say “We’re all Perverts”
    For YEARS I have been saying that they are all perverts … well, at least now they admit it. They should admit that they can not get their History right. And they can not get their economics right either.

    on a totally different note – what is this baloney with insurance start dates – like January first ? It is a freakin computer system – good at tracking any old dates – so what is with this nonsense ?
    oh -and what is with Chris Hayes saying that the Constitution is ‘flawed’ because it is not a Parliamentary system ? What is with the other nitwits at alternet who say ‘limited government’ is not in the Constitution ? They can’t even read the Constitution. What a hopeless bunch of commie jerks.

  • alienlovesong

    What a hateful blog. Unnnghhh. You are all poisonous little teabaggers who hate hate hate and love nothing but yourselves and people like you. How small your world is.

  • CowboyUp

    Slavery existed in the Americas, along with genocide, and unrestricted warfare, not to mention human sacrifice, long before Columbus got here.

    • El Desdichado

      How dare you, sir. Why the Maya and the Aztecs lived in unsullied harmony with Mother Nature, the earth and their fellows in an egalitarian golden age…until the evil European arrived.

      (Just don’t check what’s in your pre-Columbian tamale…)

      • CowboyUp

        Did I forget cannibalism? Lol, my bad. The funny thing is, I think I’ve got more respect for my American Indian ancestors, warts and all, than many full bloods do these days.

  • http://www.clarespark.com/ Clare Spark

    Columbus Day is often trotted out as the beginning of dreadful American colonialism. I wrote about that here: http://clarespark.com/2010/04/08/racism-modernity-modernism/. Note the illustration of Columbus landing, with native American lurking in the bushes. “Racism, modernity, modernism.” I know Geoffrey Symcox of UCLA, and his views are consistent with most of the history department there where I got my degree. Europeans “Invaded” America, is the route to the Ph.D.

  • cheechakos

    Ward Churchill is a complete fraud. From his fake Vietnam military service to his fraudulent ancestry. His lies make him irrelevant.

    Columbus was not a “white European”. He was hispanic.

    Hispanic (Spanish: hispano, hispánico; Portuguese: hispânico, hispano, Catalan: hispà, hispànic)[1][2] is an ethnonym that denotes a relationship to Spain or, in some definitions, to ancient Hispania, which comprised the Iberian Peninsula including the modern states of Andorra, Portugal, and Spain and the British Crown Dependency of Gibraltar.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hispanic

    • swift

      The people of Spain are/were as far as I’m aware predominantly white-skinned, and since Spain is in Europe, Columbus was most likely a white European, he just wasn’t English

      • cheechakos

        Europe wasn’t “English”.
        I don’t make the political racial rules,lol.
        The government does.

    • Agustin Farinas

      Columbus was an italian sailor from Genova Italy. He only sought the financial aid of the Spanish King Ferdinand and Isabella.

      • cheechakos

        Some Italians don’t consider themselves “white Europeans”
        Whatever his and his soldiers genetic make up was, they were not the same people who eventually colonized N America.they invaded S America.Mexicans are the descendants of Spainish conquistadores.

        I don’t care, just being politically correct according to government racial codes by the department of census.

  • trapper

    In order for Leftism to win Leftists must destroy our culture. If our traditions are evil, our heroes really monsters, our institutions racist and oppressive, etc. then Leftism will be introduced as the humane, modern, and moral replacement.

    • Cold_Drake_80

      Leftism as you call it is a direct outgrowth of Western Civilization. You can’t have one without the other. The notions of the primacy of the individual, universal rights, democratic governance, intellectualism, etc. All lead to the very notion of “progressive” upon which the left is built.
      On the right we have tribalism, the obsession with strength, the evaluation of violence as the highest virtue, racism, etc. Not a lot to build on and certainly not in line with the Enlightenment ideals that lead to the founding of the US.

  • PowertodaPeople1848

    Typical right-wing lies and racism. The “White Man” can do no wrong; he merely brings civilization to the brown savages and takes the land his god has given him. Columbus was a genocidal monster; pick up Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States” to find ample documentation. The United States and nearly every major European power (the former empires) were built on the backs of colored people. No amount of literal whitewashing can hide the truth behind the murder, torture, and exploitation Europeans visited upon the Americas. Whites were the original “illegal immigrants” to America.

    • glennd1

      Howard Zinn’s famed book is as much agit prop as it is truth (it no doubt contains some important truths, the operative word being “some”). His Manichean presentation of our history is reductionist and highly politicized. It’s also funny to me that you seem to believe the version of history his book debunks is somehow on offer here or in any educational institution – or has been for the past 40 years. His work has been roundly criticized as wanting in accuracy and balance, which he admits, as he believed what he was doing was a political action, not an intellectual one. See a very good assessment of Zinn’s history here http://www.newrepublic.com/article/112574/howard-zinns-influential-mutilations-american-history in the New Republic (no right wing rag). In this, he suffers the fatal conceit and flaw many partisan historians from leftist to libertarian fall prey to. Even more strange is for you to recommend it so breathlessly, to those of us who read history, that is. It makes clear you are a partisan, not a person in search of truth.

      If you want to actually understand the current state of research into the effects of the ‘Columbian’ age, you should read Charle’s Mann’s excellent two book series on the topic, the first called 1491 and the second, 1493. What you’ll find is that the history is much more complex than you or Howard Zinn present.

      Do it, I dare you. Be the first dingbat from the left or right that I’ve met to actually take the challenge to learn more. See my comment below for some ideas I took from it. Sure, I don’t buy the simplistic vision in this article, but really, to cite Howard Zinn? You can’t be serious, can you?

    • Drakken

      We came, we saw, and we conquered and yet you whine about it because you lost, I am sure there is a self help group for self esteem and perhaps they will give to a trophy for just showing up, to the victors go the spoils.

      • glennd1

        So, if I (hypothetically, of course) lay in wait with a sniper rifle and pick you off as you go to get in your car tomorrow, then go into your home and take whatever I want, that must be okey dokey with you, right? I mean, according to you might makes right. You take what you can and moral considerations are irrelevant.

        Please, do the entire world a favor and kill yourself. Now. Thanks, and have a nice day.

        • CowboyUp

          I think what he’s saying is that was the way of the world at the time, and not only has he nothing to be ashamed of, but if someone tries to guilt trip him, he’ll just rub it in their faces until they grow a hide and get over it.

        • Drakken

          False analogies aren’t going to cut it libtard, and as a former sniper I take exception to your use of the word.

    • Flowerknife_us

      Is one to assume you would have preferred events to have turned out the opposite?

      Would things really have been different if some other person from some other place had sailed the Ocean Blue in 1492?

    • 1proactive2

      With all the experience in building empires by “colored people”, you’d think they may have built one themselves. As it is said in the ghetto, “How come dat is?!”

      The problem is, you can’t get “colored people” to leave the “empires” their ancestors built, you know, to head back to their primitive lands since they’ve become preoccupied with tearing down what they currently have. Excuse me, built. Conundrum time here.

  • glennd1

    Even Ward Churchill was forced to admit that the “genocide” accusations against the European settlers are baseless. The sad but simple fact is that diseases killed 90% – or maybe even more – of the Native Americans in North America. This happened for numerous reasons but all scholars on the subject agree, there was no intent on the behalf the settlers as they were also dying from the same diseases in some cases. Over several hundred years, disease wiped out 10s of millions of Native/Mezo Americans.

    However, the European explorers/conquerors who came to the Americas did heinuous things. But it’s also been discovered that the population of Native Americans was much larger than we previously thought, and goes back in history much farther than we originally thought. Native Americans have a history on the continent that may go back as far as 30,000 years, it’s still being researched. And the history of those peoples is replete with war, conquest, empire building, slavery, oppression, exploitation of nature and all the things that come with humanity. Native Americans in North America, for example, burned vast swaths of the countryside for agriculture and to facilitate hunting. The “Great Plains” of the U.S. were very likely the result of burns by them.

    It’s a reverse racism that leftists miss about themselves. Why would they ever believe that Native Americans were morally superior to their European counterparts? Why wouldn’t power and property and empire building be just as rampant in their civilizations as they became in ours? Of course, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t much to learn from them, quite the contrary. Just as European and Asian civilizations developed great ideas, cultures and technology, so did Native Americans. I find the cultural traditions of the Iroquois nation and their politics very appealing.

    It’s also important to keep in mind the historical conquest. The Spaniards Portuguese were no doubt vicious warriors and conquerors, but it’s a;so true that Cortez was only defeated because several other Mezo American tribes allied with the Spaniards against them. And the conquests were not seen at the time as overtly criminal or immoral by Mezo American peoples – this was the way of the world back then.

    The writer Charles Mann has written two great books about all this, 1491 and 1493, which go into what we actually know about the Americas based on current science and research. It’s completely different from what I was taught in school as the field has dramatically advanced in the past 20-30 years. Sadly, what he also reveals in his works is how politicized it all has become, with PC thinking overtly maintaining a victim/oppressor dyad regardless of the facts.

    Last, there is something we could do today that would help Native Americans. We should all demand our government live up to the treaties the U.S. govt made with them. We have broken and continue to violate many of them and this basic sense of fairness and adherence to the rule of law alone would do wonders for them and our moral standing. But because this is a food fight, we don’t discuss substance. Instead, we trade in patriotic moralizing and leftists social justice rhetoric because that’s what we do to everything in our society now.

    Sigh…

    • CowboyUp

      Something else that isn’t often mentioned is that Europeans also were dropping like flies from American diseases they had no immunity from, but there was a ‘never ending’ supply of Europeans to replace them. Also, the same amount of land it took to support a person in a tribal warrior culture would support an exponential number of European’s in their way of life.

      • glennd1

        Uhh, I mentioned it, yes? There is a basic biological difference that went beyond just “immunity” but in fact due to the separate lines of genetic/human evolution that native Americans and Euros were part of, Native American immune systems were quite differently developed than ours and did not react to the new pathogens and microbes well in general. But still, the same diseases they died of killed many Europeans as well.

        You seem to actually not understand the state of Mezo American cultures when the Europeans arrived. Read Charles Mann and get back to me when you have. They were not “tribal warriors” but in fact many societies here had already been agrarian, doing agriculture on large scales, had rich technology and culture that in some very real ways exceeded ours.

        Example, bow and arrow was a superior weapon to the early guns the settlers had which were only effective at very close range and took much longer to reload after use. Native Americans had an advantage in battle against them due to this. Now of course, guns did improve, but also Native Americans began trading for guns with the settlers as soon as they arrived.

        • CowboyUp

          Pardon me for agreeing with you.
          I said it isn’t often mentioned, and since you did I expounded on it a little to show why it visibly affected the Indians more than the Europeans. I’d agree the Europeans had a better immune system, mostly because of conditions in their cities, the way they lived, and because they were exposed to more diseases being in contact with Africa and Asia. But many of the American diseases were just as new to them as the European diseases were to the Indians, and the fatality rates were high on both sides.

          Apologies for drifting North without making it clear I was doing so, but I was talking about the North American Indians. Central and South American civilizations were conquered, their accumulated knowledge destroyed to the extent the Spanish could, and converted outright. Still, Most people in those areas at any given time were living in tribal warrior cultures.

          Sure, Indians like my Cherokee ancestors were advanced in many ways and had agriculture, but they lacked things like draft animals, bronze or iron tools, and the plow. They and their neighbors were still tribal warrior cultures and required much more land to support the same number of people than the Europeans, and they had to migrate regularly. I never said tribal warrior cultures couldn’t be rich culturally or make innovative technological advancements of their own, that’s true about almost any culture. But there is a huge difference in the way of life and the thinking of tribal warrior cultures and what we call civilization.

          We can make comparisons and talk about the tradeoffs between their weaponry and tactics some other time, because the development of weaponry and tools is one of my longtime interests, and if it’s an interest of yours as well, we could go on and on for longer than I have time to on that topic.

      • Cold_Drake_80

        Neat little slur you dropped there. “Warrior culture” as though all they did was play the savage out of an old John Wayne movie. Grow up. Their system of agriculture was able to support a far larger population than was previously thought it was the diseases you dismiss as background that depopulated the continent. We’re talking about a 90% death rate remember.

        • glennd1

          Think much? You just make stuff up. Cowboy did not dismiss the diseases as “background” – it’s plain and clear in his comment. Do you realize your feral, partisan hatred actually makes you irrational? And look at my comments – I’m no defender of Columbus or apologist for America. I simply base my views on facts. You use facts as a weapon, and apparently, when they aren’t helpful, you just make up stuff as you did here. Get some help, soon – you are losing it and becoming irrational.

    • Cold_Drake_80

      So basically the Americas were no less savage than Europe? It is interesting about how people decry the Huns, Mongols, Turks, etc who invaded Europe but merely shrug or snort at the notion Europeans were even more brutal and destructive in the Americas.
      We can blame disease as much as we want but the truth is it wouldn’t have happened without European intervention in the Americas. In a desire to find better living conditions and wealth Europeans utterly annihilated tens of millions of people and turned vast swaths of the continent into a howling wilderness.
      I am quit proud of my European ancestry but I’m not going to shy away from it’s dark side. My ancestors came upon a land teaming with people and resources and invaded pure and simple. The US and Canada are quit different in the annals of colonialism. You go to places like Africa, India or China and you find the majority of the population is made up of indigenous people and it always was that way. Here, however, the opposite is true. That should be chilling to think about but, again, most people or blissfully blind to it all. Books like 1491 may correct that lack of thought but it’s going to take a long time and will only ever be partially done.

      • glennd1

        Think much? Intent matters – the germ theory of disease came about long after most Native Americans die. The European settlers are no more morally culpable for it than some person who walked from one town to another to escape cholera in the middle ages in Europe and brought the disease with them unwittingly. There is no moral culpability for these actions – no matter how loud you yell. Period. Most people at the time – including some Native Americans – thought disease was a punishment from God. But hey, keep lecturing, it only shows what a dingbat you are.

        In what way did I shy away from the “dark side” of our history? I use scare quotes because such a formulation reveals your Manichean worldview – one that is rarely found among actual historians, btw. You characterize the Europeans settler as an “invasion”, which shows how truly ignorant you are of the facts. Have you ever seen a 500 year invasion before? You also try to claim that the history of China is somehow less morally sullied because all that was done was among indigenous peoples, which really is just laughable. Try reading up on the Chin dynasty and how brutal it was. The slaughter and heinous actions of Chin in forming China were intentional and are certainly some of the worst crimes against humanity in the history of mankind – certainly top 20-30. But my guess is you don’t know a thing about Chinese history, yet you bring it up to support your inane soundbites to try and make yourself seem intelligent – FAIL.

        Even funnier, you reject 1491 (and the second volume, 1493) without having any idea what they are about. You should try actually learning something before you shoot your mouth off – you’d have a much better chance of forming a cogent point of view for analysis or an actual argument. As it is, you are spouting hyperbole and nonsense.

        • Cold_Drake_80

          I didn’t dismiss 1491 instead I wrote: ” Books like 1491 may correct that lack of thought but it’s going to take a long time and will only ever be partially done.”
          In other words such books could do real good but it will take time and probably never fully address all the misconceptions. You aren’t much of a reader are you?

          • glennd1

            Have you read 1491?

          • Cold_Drake_80

            Okay, since you clearly didn’t read what I wrote here it is again:

            “I didn’t dismiss 1491 instead I wrote: ” Books like 1491 may correct
            that lack of thought but it’s going to take a long time and will only
            ever be partially done.”
            In other words such books could do real good
            but it will take time and probably never fully address all the
            misconceptions. You aren’t much of a reader are you?”

            See, the way this works is I comment on what you posted then you actually read what I posted and comment on that. So you have to sit down, read what I’ve posted, actually THINK for once, then post comments based on WHAT I WROTE. I know this isn’t as easy as just FPMing away but you actually have to try.

          • glennd1

            Have you read 1491? Or is smarmy word parsing and facile rhetoric all you’ve got? You see, I don’t want to argue with someone who characterizes things they know nothing about. You have no idea what’s in 1491, hence you cannot comment on it. Or does that basic rationale evade you? Stop trying to win minor points, it’s pathetic.

          • Cold_Drake_80

            I can keep this up all day:

            Okay, since you clearly didn’t read what I wrote here it is again:

            “I didn’t dismiss 1491 instead I wrote: ” Books like 1491 may correct
            that lack of thought but it’s going to take a long time and will only
            ever be partially done.”
            In other words such books could do real good
            but it will take time and probably never fully address all the
            misconceptions. You aren’t much of a reader are you?”

            See, the way this works is I comment on what you posted then you actually read what I posted and comment on that. So you have to sit down, read what I’ve posted, actually THINK for once, then post comments based on WHAT I WROTE. I know this isn’t as easy as just FPMing away but you actually have to try.

        • Cold_Drake_80

          Well, since silence is the FPM way of admitting you’re wrong I accept your apology. Even if you still sicken me. You may go now.

  • deebo

    I doubt that the demonization of Western civilization is at the heart of most criticisms of Columbus Day as a holiday. The man was a skilled mariner and was certainly brave for undertaking an expedition that most rulers in Europe thought to be doomed from the start. He was indeed a product of his time, but that doesn’t mean that we should completely dismiss the things he did prevent them from being taught to people because they violate the mythology that we have built for him. That is as revisionist as focusing only on the man’s faults and trying to demonize him because he does not stand up to our modern version of a civilized man. He sold young (9-10 year olds were the most popular) native girls to his soldiers as sex slaves. He demanded extortionate tribute from natives on the islands that the Spanish crown gave him and then cut off their hands if they didn’t pay up. He and his soldiers hunted the natives who fled and fed them alive to their hunting dogs. These actions are not just considered cruel by our standards. The Spanish crown recalled, stripped him of all titles, and imprisoned him because they thought he was too cruel even by standards of that time.

    As Godwin’s Law seems to apply on a regular basis here, I don’t feel too guilty in making the following comparison. Say that Germany had an Adolf Hitler Day where his Nazi revitalization of the German economy, military, and national prestige were celebrated while the brutal repression of individual liberties and human rights violations committed by his regime were ignored. Would this not cause some problems? Would those who speak out against not telling the whole story be considered revisionists? Would they be speaking out against German culture and civilization if they reminded people that more than just economic revitalization occurred under the Nazi regime?

    There are imperfect individuals who deserve to be remembered kindly by future generations. George Washington is the epitome of an example of a person who, even if you strip away the mythology surrounding him, is fully deserving of the honor and praise he receives. I do not feel Columbus is as deserving of Washington of such individual praise. The act of discovery and the changing of world history are certainly important, and Columbus is an important historical figure, but the man is not worthy of the worship he receives.

  • Brand

    Check out:

    “A Look at the Jesus of Reza Aslan in “Zealot”(2013) and How it is Alot like the Violent Koranic Jesus(and a Friendly but Ignorant Interview of Aslan)”

    http://www.antisharia.com/2013/08/12/a-look-at-the-jesus-of-reza-aslan-in-zealot2013-and-how-it-is-alot-like-the-violent-koranic-jesusand-a-friendly-but-ignorant-interview-of-aslan/

    “Leonardo Fibonacci of Pisa(1170-1250),Greatest European Mathematician of the Middle Ages,and the Muslim World”

    http://www.antisharia.com/2012/08/14/leonardo-fibonacci-of-pisa1170-1250greatest-european-mathematician-of-the-middle-agesand-the-muslim-world/

  • IndigoRed

    “Few holidays are as “politically incorrect” as is the day that Americans reserve to commemorate the birthday of Christopher Columbus.”

    That’s incorrect. October 12 is not the birthday of Christopher Columbus. Oct. 12 is “Columbus Day” because he first sighted land later called America. His actual birthday is August 26, 1451.

    His greater scientific discovery was that of magnetic declination which is the angle between magnetic north (the north magnetic pole) and true north (the North Star). This discovery allowed others to sail the open ocean to specific points of land and return to their exact point of departure. Because of Columbus’ voyage, the ’round trip’ across open oceans became possible and commonplace.

  • El Desdichado

    My wife is from Central America – in her mestizo nation they call the day El Dia de la Raza. But it is free from the multi-culti revisionism that characterizes it here in the eyes of the anti-American Left. People just get out and have a patriotic Latin parade (the rhythm is a bit more caliente than here… and young girls gyrate around in miniskirts and thigh-high boots – but it is free of whining revisionists who complain about past historical misdeeds.

    http://connecthook.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/viva-colon/

  • Dana Garcia

    If I must celebrate an Italian (and not a US founder), I would prefer da Vinci, Galileo or Michelangelo.

    • ohyehbelievit

      Why? Columbus was trying to find a new route to the East for trade purposes; he did not set out to “discover” the Americas. By the way, this new route was needed because Islamic imperialism had closed off the overland trade routes with their recent successes in destroying the last remaining Christian vestiges in the Near East. Think Constantinople, now Istanbul.

      • Cold_Drake_80

        I was wondering when a good FPMer was going to start foaming at the mouth over Muslims. Didn’t seem to take that long.

        • ohyehbelievit

          So facts are now foaming at the mouth; wow, polemic response to a factual statement is always useful. By the way, I’m fully aware of the man’s faults most historical figures, including da Vinci, Galileo, and Michelangelo, would fail any modern human standards test to some degree.

          • Cold_Drake_80

            The implication was the ensuing genocide that occurred after the arrival of Europeans was the fault of Muslims. Which is idiotic or to put it another way very FPM. Was he hunting for a new trade route? Yes. Does that excuse his adoption of slavery as a means of supporting the colony he founded? No. Does anyone’s effort to find a new trade route excuse the deaths of tens of millions? Not outside of the FPM circles.

          • ohyehbelievit

            You are an idiot. There was no implication of fault and no excuse for any wrongs committed by Europeans in the statement. Your imagination gets the best of you. You my need to seek medical help. Slavery was by no means exclusive to Europeans at the time. In fact, if you knew anything about history, you’d know that most, if not all, civilizations of the Americas and East (Islamic or otherwise) actively participated in human enslavement and trafficking. You’re obviously a troll that doesn’t understand the difference between knowing a few facts and mastering a subject. Also, please learn to read with a little comprehension.

          • Cold_Drake_80

            You whine about claiming their is no excuse for the abuses by Europeans and then yammer on about everyone was engaged is slavery. Using excuses to minimize what was done by some by pointing at others. You can’t even stick to party line for a full paragraph.

          • ohyehbelievit

            Huh? You make zero sense. You are one dumb F. I’m done trying to educate you as I see you’re brain dead.

          • Cold_Drake_80

            Good riddance your jabbering was beyond annoying.

    • Cold_Drake_80

      YES EXACTLY! Their are so many other Italians worthy of celebration. These men had real greatness to them and unbloodied hands.

  • glennd1

    Way to make a case, thanks for this. I do think there is a middle ground – not morally but with respect to history. The collision of peoples that began with the “discovery” of the ‘New World’ had a huge impact on the course of human civilization. Just the crops and fauna and bacteria and livestock and DNA combined in amazing ways that changed human civilization.

    Just consider the lowly potato. Most people don’t know that it originated in South America. In fact, it was a highly cultivated and developed breed of potato that was taken back to Europe (one of several available). Only once the potato had been successfully grown across Europe and the Americas did famines cease to exist in the West. Beforehand they came with some regularity as food supplies were just not as reliable. This was a huge step forward for mankind. It’s also true that 90% or more Native Americans died from exposure to diseases that they could not fight off, for a variety of reasons – and that the settlers did not intend this, and some died from the very same diseases themselves.

    My suggestion is that we have a “holiday” based on reality. While you are correct to point out that Columbus was found to be vicious beyond standards of his time, we have to guard against assuming our moral standards are the same. he was a man of his times and he was imperfect. And to compare him with Hitler is ridiculous – you cite Godwin’s Law, you ought to know better. Many conquerors throughout history were far more vicious – just consider Cortez, he was a monster. Hitler’s “evil” was intended to be genocidal (failed to do so), Columbus was never thus.

    As for George Washington, well I’ve never looked at him the same since I read that he used to horse whip his soldiers to keep them fighting in battle and would shoot men who abandoned the line during battle. All while living in princely style for much of the war, paying for supplies out of his own pocket, which he could easily do being the richest man in America. Perspective is everything. Washington can be well remembered for not turning the country into a monarchy with him at the head, but as I mentioned, he was the richest man in America. Do you think Bill Gates or Warren Buffet would want to be king? That’s who George Washington was.

    Why not just tell the whole story? You see, the left wants to use this as evidence in their indictment of the U.S. and it’s claim at having some moral standing in the world. I think that kind of “thinking” is absurd. Our nation is cloaked in honor and shame. We should hold the honor close and be honest about the shame, doing our best to not repeat it and to right it where possible. But here’s the thing. I don’t share a collective guilt for Columbus – nobody in the present day does. Nor do the descendants have a claim on the suffering of people who died 400 years ago. This kind of history is being uses by the Progressive Marxists as fuel for their social justice/critical theory hate engine. PUt another way, this history is used to invalidate any claim liberal values might have American culture and success.

    We must get beyond this idiocy. I do think the way forward is to use facts and reason, as you have done here. I just hope that welcome a dialog about it rather than join the deranged America haters in our midst.

    • Drakken

      Our nation is the greatest enterprise known to mankind, and useless idiots like you want to grovel to the 3rd world in a frenzy of self loathing and self hating debasement. You bloody well disgust me. We have NOTHING to apologize for and everything to celebrate since you enjoy every modern convenience known to mankind. Why don’t you take your solidarity of the 3rd world and go live there since you love them so much and hate western culture.

      • glennd1

        Go fuck yourself you ignorant boor. I wonder, can you even read? Can you really read my comment and not see that I appreciate what is great about this country? Do you think really think that the U.S. has nothing in its history that is morally regrettable? Fyi, I did not suggest we apologize to anyone, nor did I make any comments about the third world.

        • Father Dacius

          I don’t think Drakken ‘gets’ you. Some facts of history are just unavoidable, others amounted to them being just how things got done in those days. Do not forget that the Spanish had just completed a long and expensive war against the Moors, who were in their turn just as mean and vicious as any of humanities rulers. The difference in The United States is we have until recently enjoyed complete freedom of speech, which has given us the ability to critique ourselves, and given us some hope of correcting our errors. My contribution to this is that one needs the moral compass that faith provides in to run a function check on your behavior. The NEGATIVE Liberties given us by our early fathers have created a civilization unique in human experience. Let us not abandon it when it becomes inconvenient to a lot of sophist leaches whose only desire is permanent power.

          • glennd1

            But of course I wasn’t calling for abandoning it. so one does wonder who you are directing this comment at.

            Also, the openness and honesty about history was and is not an American phenomenon, but in fact is a phenomenon which many nations and peoples have undertaken in the past 50 years. From Israel to South Africa to Vietnam to the U.S., there have been many movements to move beyond the tropes and lies we were told for a long time about our past.

            And of course, nothing about what we’ve got requires faith. It does require moral people, but religious folks have shown themselves to be no more moral than anyone else on the planet, but hey, keep flacking for your Christian Nationalism. And go back to listening to Glenn Beck now, as I’m certain you surely do on a regular basis.

          • Father Dacius

            I must differ with you sir. Faith is the framework upon which morality is hung. Also, America is indeed a unique nation, profoundly different from all others for being built on that framework. The soviet empire was built upon the faulty faith that the state could produce the perfect socialist man, and that framework eventually collapsed. The Islamic world is built upon a lunatic framework that says murder in the name of furthering one’s faith has the approval of God. I could go on, but most of the world’s religions affirm a need to improve ones self, the conditions of others etc. all within the framework of a dialogue with the Deity or Deities.

          • glennd1

            Nonsense. Morality predated “faith” and all monotheist religions. In fact, the basic morality that we accept in the West also arose in Asian, Mezo American and African societies without ever encountering Christianity. No matter what you say – that is simply true and a fact. You cannot escape it.

            What anthropologists who study such things find is that religions reflect the values of communities. Funny that you bring up Islam – much of Islam’s “morality” inherits from Judeo-Christian morality, while adding many additional dogmas and beliefs. It’s still wrong to kill an innocent, steal, lie, cheat on your wife in Islam. Don’t get me wrong, I find Islamism despicable so in no way should my comment be seen as apologia for Islam.

            Christianity was a vicious faith which inspired much violence for almost 2000 years. Only through massive “reformation” and “reinterpretation” did it eventually stopped motivating people to say pillage and burn Alexandria and kill Hypatia because she and the knowledge of the ancient Greeks and the Romans was considered Pagan. Or burning witches. Or The Inquisition. In fact, the suppression of ideas like those of Epicurus by Christian violence, expressed so profoundly in Lucretius’s magnificent work, On the Nature of Things (De rerum natura) set back the advance of modernity, reason and science by a thousand years. Thomas Jefferson, in his final letter to John Adams, declared, “I’m an Epicurean”.So, don’t tell me about Christian morality – check your history, you don’t have a leg to stand on.

            Of course, you are welcome to your faith. Just keep it to yourself. Our liberty does not emanate from it – no matter what David Barton and Glenn Beck say. In fact, liberty comes from reason, not faith, if you actually study the epistemology of the ideas of our liberty and where they come from that is. Individual rights and liberty arose in opposition to the ‘divine’ monarchic power, given to them by Christian religious leaders who claimed the authority to do so out of thin air.

            You may want to ponder the arrogance and ignorance you must possess to bleat about morality and the nature of the world in the way that you do. The funniest thing to me about modern, self-styled fundamentalist Christians is their epic lack of humility. Whether the vitriol of a Rick Santorum, or a Rick Perry political “prayer rally” or Sarah Palin’s prayer warriors or Michelle Bachman’s inane Dominionism, the hubris on display is epic an quite out of step with the “they will know you by your works” Catholicism I was raised with.

            Are you done yet? If you continue in this vein, it will only get worse for your arguments because you don’t have a leg to stand on. Keep it to yourself, and I’ll keep my atheism to myself. And I’m a very moral person by the way – I make good moral choices all the time without reflecting on God or religion. In fact, the morality of atheists has been studied and it turns out as a group that they act in ways that are more moral than the average person in the U.S.

            Wake up. Get a clue. Stop collapsing your politics with your faith. Join the 21st century.

          • Father Dacius

            If you Good Sir do not understand that the rights of man are established by and from God, and not from some secular document, subject to change, then You Sir, do not have a leg to stand on.

          • glennd1

            I wonder, do you even realize how arrogant and fact free your response was to me? First of all, we were discussing morality, not the rights of man – but you just decided to change the subject to the next stupid thing you believe.

            I’m very familiar with your line of ‘reasoning’ but here’s the problem with that view. There isn’t a shred of proof that God exists ot that Christianity is “right” – so, from a very basic perspective you view is speculative, not factual. Beyond those basics, there is absolutely no proof that God gave us our rights. None. Zip. Nada. You can say as many times as you want – but that doesn’t make it any more true.

            You are welcome to believe a bunch of nonsense, but you are not welcome to present it as “truth” without an offer of evidence. Our rights only exist because MAN declared we had them. and MAN created govts and laws that enforce them.

            So, please do the entire sentient world a favor and shut the eff up. It’s the 21st century and it’s time for the adult-children among us who insist in believing in their Daddy in the sky to to grow up, you sad, deluded putz.

          • Father Dacius

            If you believe that our rights are established by men, then it is just as easy for men to take them away.

          • $1420579

            And if you actually pull your head out of your backside, you would notice that men take away other’s rights all the time. it’s also true that our rights are protected by men – police, judges, courts, laws. God seems rather like an absentee landlord on this, and all counts really. But hey, keep up your arrogant babble.

            Do you have any idea how absurd you sound to a thoughtful, knowledgeable person? And answer this. Why did the Declaration use the word “Creator” rather than “God?

          • glennd1

            You also haven’t bothered to try and counter a single fact that I’ve cited here. Why is that? Do you think you can get by on bromides and tropes? Do you really not see how vapid your commentary here has been? You have nothing but your declarations. Here’s some insight for you that you should really take it to heart. Your “faith” or “belief” adds no weight to your claims. It’s not evidence, nor is it reason. You keep stating things presumptively, but don’t actually argue in a real sense at all. It’s quite sad. I bet you think you are smart, sigh…

          • Father Dacius

            My small meager replies must really get to you since you make a point of offering a long refutation. I lament for you that you have shut out out your awareness of a sense of the Divine. Mine has sustained me through war and official oppression for most of my long life. I will keep you in my prayers.

  • Drakken

    Oh look ! It looks like the re-education camp of self loathing and self hating our western culture has really done its job. We of western civilization have nothing to apologize for and everything to celebrate. We came, we saw and we conquered, get over it.

    • glennd1

      You run around here like you are an enforcer or something, but miss that you haven’t made a single substantive point or contradicted a single fact presented in this discussion.

      I remember you, you are some kind of ex-military asshole (not all military are like you) who thinks he’s got some clout to tell people whats what and that you “know” something the rest of us don’t. I have a newsflash for you – you are nothing but a loudmouth jerk who comes off like a raging fool.

      • Drakken

        The funny thing is, little libtards like you who grovel at the alter of diversity are always the first to get slaughtered by our enemies, puzzys like you are a dime a dozen and the time of niceties and pleasantries with you on the left are over. One way or another, this is going to come to a head and you and others of your ilk are not going to like the results.

  • Netta

    Ah, yes. A holiday that celebrates a bloodthirsty, eurotrash conqueror who fed native babies to dogs, chopped up preggos and raped kiddos. What? Not whitewashed enough for you conservs?

    • 1proactive2

      You’re right, Netta. Show us how to take action with an act of commitment against disgraceful America, and leave the country. We’ll celebrate your courage here while suffering the torments of living here. Let us know where you’ve landed so we can send mail and such.

      • glennd1

        Do you see what a vicious jerk you are? She notes Columbus’s actions accurately – and you tell her to leave the country? Why don’t you answer the question? Do you not see why a complaint might be mad,e about Columbus, given the nature of some of his actions? Do you have a fact based response? Or do you just shrug your shoulders? In other words, is being a full time a-hole the way you want to go through life?

        • 1proactive2

          Of course not. I want Netta to be happy and obviously she isn’t by living in a country with such a stained history as she so notes.

          You resort to ad hominem attacks when all I want is the best for poor Netta who most likely is living well here in America, but hates the experience.

          Her search for the perfect free country with a perfect history may take her a lifetime, and the chances of success for her are slim to none. I’d go for the latter, but I wish her the best.

          Will it make your obviously miserable life better if I called Columbus nasty names? I can do that for you! Nothing will be solved, but, well, it can be a fun trip back through adolescence in the effort, and after all, cultivating resentment works well by killing those who practice it.

          You can start with the condemn Columbus thing, and I’ll follow along. We can plan a Happy Meal at McDonald’s later, too!

        • 1proactive2

          I wonder where poor suffering Netta got her information on the evil Columbus. A book title would be helpful with supporting research.

        • Drakken

          Need a tissue because we hurt your precious sensibilities ? Get a backbone puzzy.

    • CowboyUp

      In other words, he fit right in with the natives.

      • glennd1

        Oh, so that makes it not worth mentioning? That doesn’t bring up a legitimate concern when dedicating a holiday to Columbus? His actions went beyond the standards of the time and he was stripped of his title and imprisoned by the Spanish for it.

        You seem like a smart guy. There is no need to apologize for Columbus. And who cares if we have a holiday named after him? What does it matter in reality?

        • CowboyUp

          It doesn’t matter at all. He still made the historic voyage that made the Americas known to the old world. I don’t condemn him, the Aztecs, or anybody else for how they lived or what they did back then. Conquest and brutality is the norm for most of history, not the exception.

          I apologize for wrongs I do or share responsibility for, not for what someone else does or did. What good could come from bitterness and resentment for wrongs done to my ancestors, and what would an apology change? None, and nothing, and the same goes for the converse.

    • Omar

      At least, Christopher Columbus wasn’t a sadistic mass murderer like the Communist terrorist Che Guevara. While the actions of Europeans in the Western Hemisphere were definitely not perfect, most of the Native American deaths were a result of diseases brought from Europe, like smallpox. Columbus had never exactly wanted to exterminate the indigenous populations in the Hemisphere. The complex relationship between European settlers and the Native Americans came once the colonies were settled starting in the 16th century. Contrast Columbus’ actions with that of Che. Read Humberto Fontova’s books for the truth on Che Guevara.

  • CB

    You didn’t address any of the specific points they bring up which are valid. He presided over some awful atrocities we shouldn’t gloss over. I’m a right-winger all the way, but all you’ve said here is “Ignore facts about Columbus because leftist love to use them.”

    • glennd1

      Indeed – why do so many others seem to believe that the point of politics is to flack for one’s “side” no matter the facts or principles involved?

  • Flowerknife_us

    The real crime is not that of Columbus discovering the Americas. What He did was small potatoes compared with the Genocide practiced by the Natives of Central and South America.

    It was the systematic destruction of their written History by the Spanish Clergy, presumably with the blessings of the Spanish Crown.

    As for North America, Something like a 400 year war took place. With the last 100 years battles in the Courts.

  • herb benty

    White, Protestant Europeans sought a place to live in peace, away from the persecution of Rome. They had no genocidal intentions toward Natives and tried their best to live along side them. Governments commit genocide. The same spirit that couldn’t live if a few Jews were hiding out at Masada, has taken over America, with the intention of finishing the job started thousands of years ago. This is a wicked world, but we do win in the end.

  • Marisha Erickson

    Is this a joke?

  • Joe Stack

    …So where does the author actually rebut anything that is being said about Columbus?

    Also, his strange comments about judging the past through the lens of the present applies to ANY historiography, not just those labeled “leftist”.

    Sounds like a sad attempt to pull the race card about a man accused of racism. No, it’s not that Columbus might have actually done something wrong, it’s that everyone hates white people for the hell of it. 0/5 stars, next time try making an argument if you want to defend someone instead of just playing the victim.