Why Europeans Were Conquerors

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The Europeans who have long since been referred to as “explorers” were conquerors. Although conquering may not have been what the Europeans had in mind when they set off, they did take over new lands and people. They took lands that they did not own, and had no real right to take, essentially stealing them. They went as merchants, but decided to stay because they could make profits off the new land. Europeans wanted the glory of discovering and claiming a place not already claimed or known to the other European countries, not just for themselves, but for their country. Claiming and owning meant the most glory for the Europeans. They also thought that the Native peoples would be easy to convert to Christianity and would do as they were told.…show more content…
They went as merchants to make profits, but used the abundance of natural resources as reasons to stay. Europeans traveled for glory, and used lack of recognized ownership as reasons to claim the New Worlds as their own. They went as missionaries to convert the indigenous people. They used reasoning and force to convert them. They believed it would be easy to use and control the Natives. The Europeans spread disease and unwanted, unknown ideas to the Native people. Even well-known authors call them conquerors in their books. Louis B. Wright defended the explorers, but also called them conquerors multiple times. He stated that people who were not there could not really say whether the actions were wrong for that time. However, people of the 21st century realize that those actions were wrong. The Natives did not ask to be invaded and have new ideas forced onto them. They also did not ask to be killed or contract diseases. They did not ask for these things, but they did not have much of a choice. Not living at the time, we cannot prove or disprove whether the Europeans, at the core, really wanted to conquer the New Worlds, or whether that thought developed over time. Based off of John Locke’s and Thomas Hobbes’ theories , does that make the Europeans of the 15-17th century naturally evil? Does that make us naturally evil, since those are our ancestors? Or does that make us naturally good, since we have learned from their mistakes? Whether people then were good or evil, they were conquerors either
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