The myth that Columbus discovered a new world has led to Columbus Day promoting an inaccurate telling of the United States' history. Additionally, Celebration of Columbus Day deflects from the unfair and cruel humanitarian treatment of the Indigenous people during that period of history. If instead
“Columbus, the Indians, and Human Progress”, chapter one of “A People’s History of the United States”, written by professor and historian Howard Zinn, concentrates on a different perspective of major events in American history. It begins with the native Bahamian tribe of Arawaks welcoming the Spanish to their shores with gifts and kindness, only then for the reader to be disturbed by a log from Columbus himself – “They willingly traded everything they owned… They would make fine servants… With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.” (Zinn pg.1) In the work, Zinn continues explaining the unnecessary evils Columbus and his men committed unto the unsuspecting natives. The argument that seems to be made (how Columbus
The Americas were eternally transformed and the once rich cultures of the Native American people were altered and forgotten, hindering the world from completely understanding even their existence. Today, Columbus has a controversial legacy—he is remembered as a daring explorer who supposedly discover North America (which he didn't set foot in), yet his exploits also let loose changes that would ultimately demolish the native populations he and his conquistadors
Instead it shows Columbus as this great man who is bringing these modern ideas (raising of the cross) to these very savage people, which is seen by the Natives dancing around naked. However in reality Columbus stumbled upon this land and forced his gold strive mind upon the natives. This meant taking them captive and killing them all to get some profit. Other parts of the picture that stand out and show how the Europeans are superior to the Natives is the clothes worn by both sides. The Europeans are dressed in very fancy and expensive cloths, which shows their wealth and their superiority.
Today he is seen as a controversial figure not because of that mistake, but because of the largely negative actions he took when he reached the Americas. His treatment of the natives and brutal tactics he used have rather recently began to loom over his accomplishments in the history books. It does however remain undeniable that he did allow Europeans to become aware of the presence of the Americas. That one voyage inspired the immigration of countless people of a variety of different backgrounds to North, South, and Central America. Consequently, an extreme exchange of agriculture, medicines, goods, religions, ideas, and unfortunately diseases occurred, which produced negative and positive effects on the land.
However, Wright’s “Fool’s Paradise discusses how he believes the people of Rapa Nui destroyed their environment in the same way we destroy ours in the pursuit we call “progress”. Wright believes that in today's world we are close to following the same path. The people of Rapa Nui left their native lands of Polynesia for an unknown reason, but their journey of traveling vast open seas leads to what is popularly known as the Easter Island of today. Easter Island, located about 23,000 miles from South America and adult 1,100 miles the nearest island.
The source, Christopher Columbus’s Journal, is a personal written account by Columbus of his time sailing to the New World and exploring it. Columbus's original Journals were lost. The original copies were sent to the King and Queen, however the parts that are left are from Bartoleme de Las Cases, one of the first men to come to the New World. He did not agree with Christopher Columbus’s way of treating the Indians, so it is certainly possible that the remaining parts may be tweaked to make Columbus look bad in the eyes of the people. (The Expansion of Europe and Rise of the Atlantic World, Enter Christopher Columbus) However, it is accepted that the remaining experts are more or less accurate.
They celebrate what they believe is the birth and discovery story of the Americas. Therefore, many are surprised to learn who Columbus was and the cruelties of his actions and his pursuits. Columbus Day is meant to be a day celebrating our country’s origin, however not only did Christopher Columbus not discover America, but he didn’t provide any new or useful information to European explorers of the time. The one thing he did do, though, was promoting terrorism and genocide, which even to this day has had an impact on Americans. In other words,
The revolt lasted for two years and resulted in the deaths of 80,000-300,000 (“Facing the Past to Liberate the Future”). This uprising also caused a significant drop in population as a result of European brutality and well demonstrates the violence that African natives faced. While the uprising was unsuccessful, it “forced Kaiser Wilhelm's government in Berlin to institute reforms in their African colonies as they realized the potential cost of their brutality” and became an inspiration for later 20th Century freedom fighters who called for similar interethnic unity as they struggled against European colonial rule” (Beverton). The Maji-Maji and Herero uprisings had a hugely negative impact on African populations and feelings towards the imperialist nations that still remain an important part of Africa (and Germany’s) history
Since then, the population of Native Americans has declined consistently (either steadily or sharply), mostly due to violence and disease perpetuated by the European settlers and their descendants; before the arrival of Europeans, populations were likely increasing steadily over the span of at least 12,000 years. Settlers were known to give blankets infested with small pox to Native Americans, contributing to massive declines in population. Estimates of the Native American population before the arrival of Europeans range from about 2 million to 18 million (Johansen, 2006); much of their population and a majority of their tribes have now
I agree that his accidental discovery ultimately led to the massacre of countless Natives. Although, he might be considered a hero for 'discovering ' the New World. However, there were several who came before him and inhabited the land, such as the Natives. Thus, the impossibility of discovering something that had already been in place. For this reason, I would not consider Columbus a hero.
Columbus Day is right around the corner, and the age old question, whether or not we should we be celebrating Christopher Columbus remains unanswered. The average American believes that Christopher Columbus was a brave explorer, who, despite horrible odds, sailed across the Atlantic in 1492 to discover the New World and proved that the earth was round. Both of these preconceived ideas are wrong. In 1491, no one actually thought that the world was flat. The idea that everyone in Pre-Columbian times thought that the world was flat was a myth made up during the 18th century.