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Christopher Columbus:


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The Christian Crusades had ended in 1291, the Black Death had been deliberately blamed on innocent Jews who said what their Christian torturers forced them to, that they poisoned water wells, causing the Black Death.

Crossposted at Native American Netroots

Of course, the real cause was in the stomachs of fleas, not planetary alignment, earthquakes, or God's Judgment. Nonetheless, the extermination of European Jews began in 1348 again, along with a key notorious origin of Manifest Destiny.



Source

But no sooner had the plague ceased than we saw the contrary . . . [People] gave themselves up to a more shameful and disordered life than they had led before.... Men thought that, by reason of the fewness of mankind, there should be abundance of all produce of the land; yet, on the contrary, by reason of men's ingratitude, everything came to unwonted scarcity and remained long thus; nay, in certain countries . .

Christopher Columbus was born in 1451, barely over a century later in the city - state of Genoa, Italy after the newest Christian Campaign to exterminate the European Jews. Columbus educated himself, and his father was a wool merchant (3). Columbus was a map maker and a sailor in his forties; consequently, he knew that the world was round. What were three of the motivations that led him to set sail on August 3, 1492 on the Pinta, the Nina, and the Santa Maria from the "Southern Spanish port of Palos?" Greed for gold, capitalistic greed through the potential of wealth through the slave trade, and the religious beliefs of Apocalyptic Christianity were three primary motivations Columbus had for setting sail; consequently, which fueled genocide against tens of millions of Indigenous People.

One of Columbus's motivations was greed for gold, which he acquired on the Gold Coast in the Portuguese colony (3).



Christopher Columbus: The Untold Story

Christopher Columbus:

"Gold is most excellent; gold is treasure, and he who possesses it does all he wishes to in this world." [2]
 

Another of Columbus's motives for making the journey was his capitalistic greed through the potential of wealth through the slave trade, which resulted in more and more slavery because of the desire for sugar and led to the atrocities of the Middle Passage.



Source

Sugar cane was the number one crop that produced the growth for Europe. It was brought to the New World from Spain by Christopher Columbus, later shipped to the rest of Europe. The growing sugar industry called for the usage of African slaves. Also the African slave labor and the plantations are what formed the Americas. The work that was performed on the plantations which, produced large quantities of sugar, created an even greater need for slaves, by the enslaved Africans brought to the Atlantic World by the Middle Passage.



Here is a map that provides a good overview.


The religious beliefs of Apocalyptic Christianity were yet another one of Columbus' motivations for setting sail; consequently, it was the most illogical motivation he possessed. For his greed for gold could be coldly construed as a more practical reason, except for all of the Indigenous People he would in the future have to exterminate to get it, which he probally did not yet know of at the time. He had only ventured to the Gold Coast. His use of the slave trade for monetary gain was illogical enough, for it denied the very humanity of the African People and the Indigenous People that he would force into slavery; however, his beliefs regarding Apocalyptic Christianity were projected outwards towards the entire world.



Source

During those same long centuries they had further expressed their ruthless intolerance of all persons and thugs that were non-Christian by conducting pogroms against the Jews who lived among them and whom they regarded as the embodiment of the Antichrist imposing torture exile and mass destruction on those who refused to succumb to evangelical persuasion.


Columbus was possessed with the obsession that Christ would return only if the Gospel was spread far and wide. Apocalyptic Christianity taught him: that either a savior in human form would prepare the way for Christ to return in the midst of a war between good and evil and history would end; or, that after the earth suffers dire consequences, evil would increase while love would decrease, then Christ would return with the Final Judgment and end history; or, that a period of peace would precede the Final Judgment. During this "period of peace," the Jews would be converted, while "the heathens would be either converted or annihilated." I think the latter best reflects Columbus's personal view of Apocalyptic Christianity. I will state why after a couple less known facts in order to set up a contrast.

The Indigenous People very well may have had a much better future then and history now if  Christopher Columbus had perished in the Atlantic on February 14, 1493. For the first European to land in America was Leif Ericson, a Viking seaman from Greenland (see Ericson). The ancient sagas give different accounts of this voyage made in the year 1000.



As for contacts of New World peoples with Europe, the sole early ones involved the Norse who occupied Greenland in very small numbers between A.D. 986 and about 1500. But these Norse visits had no discernible impact on Native American societies. (2)


The Norse left "no discernable impact." I cannot answer why that is, except to note that Viking voyages decreased and ended during the slow process of the Christianization of Scandinavia. So by contrast, Columbus had an enormous impact that is more far reaching than he could have imagined. Ironic indeed, since he grossly underestimated the earth's size prior to setting sail. For example, "He thought that Japan lay only three thousand miles from the southern European Coast (3)."  He may then have also grossly underestimated the sheer mass numbers of Indigenous Population in the lands he did not first discover in the Americas. No matter though, for such "heathens" would either have to be "converted or annihilated."

To be sure, the real annihilations did not start until the beginning of Columbus' second voyage to the Americas in 1493 (1).  For while he had expressed admiration for the overall  generosity of Indigenous People (1) and considered the Tainos to be "Very handsome, gentle, and friendly," he interpreted all these positive traits as signs of weakness and vulnerability, saying "if devout religious persons knew the Indian Language well, all these people would soon become Christians (3)." As a consequence, he kidnapped some of the Tainos and took them back to Spain.



It would be easy, he asserted, to "subject everyone and make them do what you wished (3)."
 


Indeed, he did subject everyone he had the power to subject.



Source

On his second voyage, in December 1494, Columbus captured 1,500 Tainos on the island of Hispaniola and herded them to Isabela, where 550 of ''the best males and females'' were forced aboard ships bound for the slave markets of Seville.

Under Columbus's leadership, the Spanish attacked the Taino, sparing neither men, women nor children. Warfare, forced labor, starvation and disease reduced Hispaniola's Taino population (estimated at one million to two million in 1492) to extinction within 30 years.



Furthermore, Columbus wrote a letter to the Spanish governor of the island, Hispaniola. Columbus asked the governor the cut off the ears and the noses of any of the slaves who resisted being subjugated to slavery.


...It is estimated that 100 million Indians from the Caribbean, Central, South, and North America perished at the hands of the European invaders. Sadly, unbelievably, really, much of that wholesale destruction was sanctioned and carried out by the Roman Catholic Church and various Protestant denominations. (1: p.37)



Greed for gold, capitalistic greed through the potential of wealth through the slave trade, and the religious beliefs of Apocalyptic Christianity were three primary motivations Columbus had for setting sail. He was successful in his aims, which fueled genocide against tens of millions of Indigenous People.  He was successful in promoting and aiding in establishing slavery by bringing sugar to Europe and to the New World from Spain, which created the evil necessity in the eyes of some of humanity's greatest criminals for the Middle Passage, where slaves packed like cargo between decks often had to lie in each other's feces, urine, and blood.

Columbus' "successes," all crimes against humanity, are now more so in these modern times. A day is now in his honor since 1971 (4). That's one success.  Here are more of Columbus' "successes" from a book I highly recommend buying.



Unlearning the Language of Conquest: Scholars Expose Anti-Indianism in America (Paperback) by Four Arrows (Don Trent Jacobs) (Editor). p. 237.

As Moyers pointed out, this "mentality" and blind acceptance of biblical inerrancy, which contributed to the genocide of American Indians during Columbus' time, has, in many ways, continued and continues to inform U.S. foreign policy, including its dealings with its own sovereign Indian Nations.
 


Christopher Columbus :

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(Bold mine)



Christopher Columbus: The Untold Story

"We shall take you and your wives and your children, and shall make slaves of them, and as such shall sell and dispose of them as their Highnesses may command; and we shall take away your goods, and shall do all the harm and damage that we can." [11]



Source

Mark Twain:

"History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme."

Indigenous peoples from the Arctic have long argued that global warming was having a dramatic effect on their environment.

Native Alaska Villages will probably have to relocate, because the ice is melting underneath them.



Opinion: Why Natives must reject Columbus Day

If Native people do not challenge the fundamental premise of the ''doctrine of discovery,'' as celebrated every year through Columbus Day, then the racist foundation upon which all federal Indian law and policy is constructed will remain intact. We see the ideology of domination carried to this hemisphere by Columbus playing out every year all over Indian country. We see it in the level of Indian incarceration, in the loss of religious freedom cases, in Indian child welfare cases where non-Indian courts ignore the law, in treaty cases where the United States ignores international standards, in international practice where the United States voted against the adoption of the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and in the Cobell trust fund case where the United States refuses to account for tens, if not hundreds, of billions of dollars that are owed to Individual Indian Money trust accounts."

Sources:


(1): Kurt Kaltreider, PH.D. "American Indian Prophecies." pp. 49-57.

(2): Jared Diamond. "Guns, Germs, And Steel." pp. 67, 79.

(3): Norton. Katzman. Escott. Chudacoff. Paterson. Tuttle. "A People & A Nation." pp. 20 - 23.

(4): Four Arrows (Don Trent Jacobs). "Unlearning the Language of Conquest." pp. 20, 236, 31, 275.

Originally posted to Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 05:39 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  By the way.,,, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mapantsula, esquimaux, Azdak

      the history of the conquest and exploitation of the Canary Islands foreshadows that of the New World. The conquest by Castile began in 1402, years before Columbus was born and shows many of the same evils, slavery, a war of extermination against the native peoples that marked Western European expansion into North and South America. Columbus is certainly a symbol of that expansion but in reality just an accident of time.

      CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

      by irate on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:25:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  That was a very decent compendium on Colombus (7+ / 0-)

    My guess is, in the current political climate of the election, that a diary that is not about the election won't attract the attention it deserves.

    I wonder how many Kos readers know this stuff already? It's been out there for a long time but who knows how many people still read history as adults once they get out of college.

    Anyway, tipped and recced.

    "We will now proceed to construct the socialist order."

    by 7November on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 05:45:35 AM PDT

  •  My reasons for rejecting Columbus (11+ / 0-)

    are a little different. As an Italian-American, Columbus Day was part of the whole Roman Catholic ethnic package that I rebelled  against as a teen.

    I've calmed down since then, but I read "A People's History" long ago, so I'm unlikely to restore Columbus to the esteem I held for him in 5th Grade.

    Besides, I'm half Irish.
    Columbus Day can't compete -- no green beer.

    •  Funny you mention that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      irate, ksingh

      Because a) it reminds me of the Sopranos episode dealing with Columbus Day and b) the Italian side of my father's family rejected the same Roman Catholic ethnic package you refer to.  They hatred the RCC and its influence in Italy.  Which is very weird.  I have no idea how they found themselves in that position.  

      "We're half awake in a fake empire."

      by Alec82 on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 05:51:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Half of Italy is in the same position (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Alec82
        •  Opposing the RCC influence? (0+ / 0-)

          Because I don't think half of Italy has left the RCC.  :-)

          "We're half awake in a fake empire."

          by Alec82 on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:55:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The former really (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            esquimaux, Alec82

            although the stats which I have seen and cannot now find obviously suggest that many Italians are only nominal Catholics, and that the role of the Church as an institution in Italian life is something that divides the public politically.

            In the US, churches have not exercised much political power, but in Europe there is a long association of organised religion, the RCC especially, with authoritarianism and fascism.

            •  Yes (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mapantsula

              I've never spent time in Italy, but the phenomenon is familiar.  

              Italy, though, can't seem to maintain political coalitions over a lot of these issues.  The recent failure of center left governance comes to mind.  They had to abandon domestic partnership legislation over a failure to agree on it.  For Western Europe that is pretty unique.

              "We're half awake in a fake empire."

              by Alec82 on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:18:31 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  You certainly can't blame Columbus.,,, (10+ / 0-)

    for all the evils of the colonial period. If Columbus hadn't sailed in 1492 someone else would have. Fisherman exploited the Grand Banks for many years prior to Columbus. It was only a matter of time before colonization began and the course of history may have been different if the original colonizer had been a country other than Spain but smallpox, measles and the rest are would have been equally fatal regardless of the source. You can take some consolation for "giving" Europeans tobacco in return.

    CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

    by irate on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 05:53:24 AM PDT

    •  Of course not - Columbus as an individual is (5+ / 0-)

      symbolic of the rape of the Western Hemisphere and the eradication of hundreds of peoples and their languages , their entire cultures.Winter Rabbit condemns this despoilation also as being motivated by the lowest of motivations - gaining wealth and power. Kind of like Early Day Republicans.

    •  Which makes what he did acceptable? (4+ / 0-)

      Which makes celebrating that piece of shit a good idea? Your reasoning here is a little scary.

      Rise like lions after slumber in unvanquishable number. Shake your chains to earth like dew, which in sleep had fallen on you. Ye are many - they are few.

      by cruz on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:02:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not "celebrating" anyone. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Roadbed Guy

        I'm merely stating that you can't blame thw whole course of western history on Columbus or any one person. As far as describing him as a "piece of shit" by all reports he was an intelligent man and a good sailor, not a particularly competent administrator but a decent man according to the standards of his day.

        CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

        by irate on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:14:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If it weren't Columbus, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          irate

          it would've been another Hernando Cortez or Pizzaro and hundred other explorers who have the same views with Columbus. You could argue that the British were relatively better colonialists, but that's not saying much.

          •  Some slave owners treated their slaves decently. (5+ / 0-)

            Does that make slavery acceptable?

            I think we're agreeing here, but saying someone was a "better colonialist" is like saying someone was a decent slaveowner. The institution is monstrous, regardless of how it is practiced.

            Rise like lions after slumber in unvanquishable number. Shake your chains to earth like dew, which in sleep had fallen on you. Ye are many - they are few.

            by cruz on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:19:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Of course (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              irate, cruz, MKSinSA

              I agree. I did say this:

              You could argue that the British were relatively better colonialists, but that's not saying much.

              In the end, colonialism was doomed to end because it's a perverse system that put a group of people in a lesser status than the other. I'm saying about the relativity of colonialists because that's the only reason why anyone would demonize Columbus. Columbus is a product of his time, after all. I think the early explorers were by nature people who were quite ruthless.

              •  Look, (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                irate, Ajipon

                I'm itching for a fight here, and your reasoned responses are making that difficult, if not impossible.

                (snark!)

                Have a lovely Sunday!

                Rise like lions after slumber in unvanquishable number. Shake your chains to earth like dew, which in sleep had fallen on you. Ye are many - they are few.

                by cruz on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 08:45:42 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  I get it. (0+ / 0-)

          Of course I don't think Columbus was the sole person responsible for the genocide, nor would anyone with half a brain. But remembering Columbus as a good sailor is like remembering Stalin as a good writer. Sure, that may be true, but it's hardly what we remember him for - we remember the repression and the terror (typical of other Soviet leaders). Despite his other "qualities," we should remember Columbus by the same standard - by what he did.

          Rise like lions after slumber in unvanquishable number. Shake your chains to earth like dew, which in sleep had fallen on you. Ye are many - they are few.

          by cruz on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:18:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  No, (5+ / 0-)

      but the ideology he stood for I sure can hold accountable and say it needs to change.

      FIVE HUNDRED YEARS OF INJUSTICE: The Legacy of Fifteenth Century Religious Prejudice

      When Christopher Columbus first set foot on the white sands of Guanahani island, he performed a ceremony to "take possession" of the land for the king and queen of Spain, acting under the international laws of Western Christendom. Although the story of Columbus' "discovery" has taken on mythological proprtions in most of the Western world, few people are aware that his act of "possession" was based on a religious doctrine now known as the Doctrine of Discovery. Even fewer people realize that today --five centuries later-- the United States government stil uses this archaic Judeo-Christian doctrine to deny the rights of Native American Indians.

      As for "but smallpox, measles and the rest are would have been equally fatal regardless of the source," the convient thing people overlook is the genocidal intent of the blankets with smallpox.

      Disease did not make this "New World"  mostly clear for the invaders.

      And what is this: "You can take some consolation for "giving" Europeans tobacco in return."

      Excuse me there is no comparison.

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:18:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Columbus is responsible for what Amherst did? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        esquimaux, Winter Rabbit

        CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

        by irate on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:28:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rincewind, Pithy Cherub, irate

          I've just had this debate so many times now it feels like a broken record. Revisionists generally like to point to the smallpox and disease, but very modest estimates of population prior to the time we're discussing have been and are being shown to be false, notwithstanding the oral histories. By revisionists saying, "yeah, but smallpox" they deny the genocide and say things like "but a decent man according to the standards of his day." No.

          She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

          by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:56:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Columbus was a genocidal murderer and a thug (3+ / 0-)

            That's the fact.

            The standards of the day were wrong.

            Justifying genocidal murder has been a common theme of religious crackpots and conquerors from the beginning of recorded history.  It is still one of the greatest evils ever perpetrated upon mankind and is as justifiable as the Armenian holocaust or Hitler's holocaust against the Jews - that is, not at all.

            "Somebody else would have done it anyway," is no justification at all.  Had someone else done it, they too would have been comparable to Hitler, Stalin, Genghis Khan and the other "great" mass murderers of history.

            "A noun, a verb..." and P.O.W Thanks, Joe Biden

            by UneasyOne on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 08:09:55 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Disease was an afterthough in the initial conques (4+ / 0-)

      On the Caribbean, Cortes should be called out he's the explorer who literally wiped out the entire population of Cuba, which was quite substantial at the time. They would round up villages and kill all the men in front of their families. They'd kill children. Women were kidnapped for purposes you can guess. Crossbows were a weapon of choice. When you read accounts of the Spaniards in Cuba, it reads very similar to some accounts of the Nazis.  This process was repeated over and over again.  Only in Mesoamerica, where the civilizations were larger, did the dynamic change, and the Conquistadors had to align themselves with warring factions to gain advantage.  But their brutality continued and whole tribes were wiped out in central america via warfare alone.  

      So though disease was a huge factor in some areas (though not all), the early Conquistadors were actually quite aggressive in directly killing people in large enough numbers to be called genocide.

    •  Just like historians may try to blame W (0+ / 0-)

      for a lot of the current malaise/atrocities when he reality, he had a heck of a lot of enablers . . .

  •  Reparations anyone? Where do we sign up? (4+ / 0-)

    My people were exploited to build the railroads and used as cannon fodder in the Civil War.  

    Having credibility when making an argument is the straightest path to persuasion.

    by SpamNunn on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 05:55:07 AM PDT

  •  An Outstanding Book (8+ / 0-)

    Those who like their history laced with good science (or versa vice) should read 1491, an amazing analysis of how Columbus began a genocide of over 90% of the inhabitants of the Americas. From the pigs they drove (Hantavirus) to the filth they carried, the Europeans were disease on hoofs!

    The book also tells how advanced the farming was in MesoAmerica, and discusses the genetic groups among indigenous (one probably from Southeast Asia, all much older than we suspect.) This is the history that Europeans have buried for centuries.

  •  Just one minor quibble (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Winter Rabbit, cruz

    The crusades are generally held to have ended with the conquest of Granada in 1492. The Catholic Kings actually gave Columbus his commission in the Alhambra's great hall, and I think it's reasonable to draw a line from the Reconquista to his voyages. The ideology behind both enterprises was much the same.

    14th-biggest a-hole on Daily Kos!

    by MBNYC on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:01:09 AM PDT

    •  You have to remember how those crusades (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MBNYC

      made the crusaders bloodthirsty (first video)

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:45:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh, absolutely. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Winter Rabbit

        My argument is essentially that the line you're drawing is even more direct and explicit than you say. I don't have them at my fingertips right now, but I seem to recall that the letters patent issued to Columbus expressly refer to the prior crusade.

        14th-biggest a-hole on Daily Kos!

        by MBNYC on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:06:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MBNYC

          I'd love to see those.

          I paraphrased one of the Bulls here, I'd be interested in seeing the timeline on those letters with this.

          Columbus's first voyage in 1492 combined with his religious motivations for making it led Pope Alexander VI to issue a Papal Bull in 1493. Pope Alexander VI ordered Ferdinand and Isabella to observe and to do the following:  that the primary purpose of all future voyages and ensuing discoveries of land and people was to Christianize and "overthrow" any Nations who resisted; that Columbus himself be used for the next voyage, since there was consensus among Columbus, Ferdinand, Isabella, and the Papacy with regards to spreading Christianity to the entire world; that the Indians might have been good converts; that all this was to be carried out "By the Authority of Almighty God;" that it applied to the entire world; that any possible Christian rulers were to not be overthrown; that Ferdinand and Isabella had power over such possible Christian rulers, while the Papacy had power over them and any possible Christian rulers; that overthrown Nations would have a Christian ruler put in place; that anyone who traded with anyone who overthrew a Christian ruler would be excommunicated; and that anyone who went against the Papal Bull would "Incur the wrath of Almighty God."

          She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

          by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:40:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Good morning, WR. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Winter Rabbit, Abra Crabcakeya

    People who do not look often think that opening their eyes brings discovery and invention.

  •  no doubt I will be denounced and flamed for (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lesliet, irate, Ajipon

    this comment but I really dislike this type of revisionist judgement. All human history is rife with conquest of one culture over another, it didn't start with Europe of the 1400's though by far European colonization was the most far reaching.

    As for the indeginous cultures of North and South America they of course paid the ultimate price during this phase of human cultural imperialism. However one would be foolish to assume that those same cultures were some sort of benevolent utopian wonderland. The Aztec, Mayan, Iroqois, Huron, etc cultures and societies all had their ugly sides as well and all exhibited the uniquely human penchant for murder, mayhem, war, and domination.

    What matters is what we do now to try to reign in our seemingly uncontrolable ugres as a species to dominate and enslave one another. To spend time in an Orwelian "cleansing" of the past would be a task that would have no end.

    "The fundamentals of my economy are strong" ...John McCain

    by polticoscott on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:10:14 AM PDT

    •  We're here for the argument! (0+ / 0-)

      CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

      by irate on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:30:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This "revisionist judgement" (4+ / 0-)

      is true. I had such fun last year with this hubris, this year I'm prepared.

      Sitting Bull Was Right

      Historical revisionists of American Indian history portray indigenous people being as violent as white Europeans were before they arrived on this continent and after settlement. Consequently, HBO's "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee" was no exception in the scene with Sitting Bull and Col Nelson Miles on the Buffalo Robe, as Miles justified the genocide he was committing as "You were as violent as we are, we're doing the same thing to you that you did to them (paraphrasing)."

      - snip -

      Unlearning the Language of Conquest Scholars Expose Anti-Indianism in America. "Peaceful verses Warlike Societies" essay by James Demeo. p. 150 - 151

      Conclusions

      This evidence, drawn from history, archeology, and anthropology, speaks clearly: The New World prior to Columbus was a far less violent place than the Old World. And it can be argued that, in spite of many terrible events which followed after Columbus, the New World remained a less violent place all the way down through the centuries because of its geographical isolation from the more violent Saharasian empires...This summary suggests the general vindication of the vast majority of Native American values and peoples as standing on the peace – making side of history. Certainly, not all Indigenous American cultures fit the peaceful images given in Dances with Wolves, but it is not an exaggeration to say that the majority did.

      Bullshit, "The Aztec, Mayan, Iroqois, Huron, etc cultures and societies all had their ugly sides as well and all exhibited the uniquely human penchant for murder, mayhem, war, and domination." Learn which ones were in fact more warlike, but understand there was war in the "New World," but not extermination.

      Also false, "To spend time in an Orwelian "cleansing" of the past would be a task that would have no end."

      It's this attitude that hides the truth and enables this.

      Source

      When Christopher Columbus first set foot on the white sands of Guanahani island, he performed a ceremony to "take possession" of the land for the king and queen of Spain, acting under the international laws of Western Christendom. Although the story of Columbus' "discovery" has taken on mythological proprtions in most of the Western world, few people are aware that his act of "possession" was based on a religious doctrine now known as the Doctrine of Discovery. Even fewer people realize that today --five centuries later-- the United States government stil uses this archaic Judeo-Christian doctrine to deny the rights of Native American Indians.

      Maybe when this BS comes off the law books,

      In 1823, the Christian Doctrine of Discovery was quietly adopted into U.S. law by the Supreme Court in the celebrated case, JOHNSON v. McINTOSH (8 Wheat., 543). Writing for the unanimous court, Chief Justice John Marshall observed that Christian European nations had assumed "ultimate dominion" over the lands of America during the Age of Discovery, and that--upon "discovery"--the Indians had lost "their rights to complete sovereignty, as independent nations," and only retained a right of "occupancy" in their lands. In other words, Indian nations were subject to the ultimate authority of the first nation of Christendom to claim possession of a given region of Indian lands. [Johnson: 574; Wheaton: 270-1]

      , we can let go of the past having learned from it.

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:35:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Winter Rabbit , good , as usual . Your sources (3+ / 0-)

    I've read mostly only excerpts from , but have particularly enjoyed those from Jared Diamond's book. I hate to not seize anything that looks like an opportunity to suggest that people who have not read Dee Brown's "Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee" consider doing so. Maybe you will not be surprised to hear that our small town's library doesn't have any of the four sources you list?

    •  I know, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Abra Crabcakeya

      the Okla. Hist. Soc. doesn't sell it either and I've never seen it for sale at anything similiar here.

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:37:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I finally got a good book about Osceola , and (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Urtica dioica gracilis

        another about Cherokee during 19th century  through efforts of Powells Bookstore in Portland , Oregon.
        This is even though one was published by a nearby University , and the second by a company once owned by people who still own a native arts& crafts store on the Rez in Cherokee , North Carolina. It took me more than a year of hard looking to find that single book about Osceola written for adult readers. It took Powells nearly four months.

  •  Domican hate Columbus (6+ / 0-)

    I have spent a lot of time on various power projects in the Dominican Republic.

    I always ask the cab drivers, "what do you think of Christopher Columbus?"  I never had to say another word for the entire ride. The drivers give you a full story of how much destruction and death Columbus caused for the Tainos.  

    I had one driver that cursed Columbus for 45 minutes straight. I just listened.

  •  see (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    irate

    My sig

    The reason people don't learn from the past, is because the past was a repetitious lie to begin with. Mike Hastie U.S. Army Medic Vietnam 1970-71

    by BOHICA on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:25:38 AM PDT

  •  This argument could head down a very ugly road... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    irate, Winter Rabbit

    I happen to believe with a few others who posted above who said it's ridiculous to blame Christopher Columbus for all the sins of his time. Clearly, if it hadn't been Columbus, it would have been another explorer.

    Perhaps we'd be better served if we focused on America 2008, particularly November 4, and not America 1492.

    Unless, of course, someone feels like trash-talking Amerigo Vespucci, too.

    •  And it would be O.K to honor a Holocaust overseer (6+ / 0-)

      because someone would've done it anyway.

      Let's make days to them, statues to them, and everytime the victims rights come up with land or religious freedom rights, let's cling to the lie that the Holocaust overseer was heroic and teach the children those lies in schools.

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:42:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  See what I meant about heading down an ugly road? (0+ / 0-)

        I knew it was only a matter of time before someone went Nazi on this argument. Sigh.

        Exploration is hard-wired into humanity's genetic code; mass killings is not.

        Again, I'll repeat: If it hadn't been Christopher Columbus, another explorer would have done what he did.

        But your argument doesn't work when I write the following sentence...

            If Hitler hadn't decided to exterminate the Jews, then some other Austrian-German would have.

        ...does it?

        Your mixing apples and oranges (or should I say olive oil and beer)?

        I live in the present. I care about the future. I'm ceaselessly interested in the past but always try to view it through the prism of those who lived then and the circumstances they had to deal with. Without doing so, it becomes quite easy to condemn.

        •  I did not say Hitler, (0+ / 0-)

          I said Holocaust overseer.

          The past has no bearing on the present? How about the Nazi War criminals that came to the U.S. after WWII and taught the U.S. how to torture or I should I say "interrogate" since "it becomes quite easy to condemn"?

          She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

          by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:15:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  A few points. (0+ / 0-)
            1. Okay, you didn't say Hitler flat-out. But it's impossible to mention the word "Holocaust" without indirectly implying Hitler.
            1. When did I say, as you seem to be quoting, "the past has no bearing on the present"? Who said that?
            1. Again, I'll say: let's focus on the present and how it might affect our future.
            1. I don't know where you are, but where I am it's a beautiful fall day and expected to be in the upper 70s. Seems like a nice day to do some canvassing for Obama. Or maybe you live in a very blue state. In that case, the NFL has been nice enough to provide us with a fine slate of games to view.
            1. As I originally posted, arguments like this usually get uglier and uglier, and some of the posts that followed mine prove me quite prescient. Let's all stop while we're ahead.
    •  The fact that CC cannot be blamed (4+ / 0-)

      for everything wrong that was done as a consequence of what he did does not imply that he cannot be blamed for the wrong that he did, which was, unfortunately, legion.

      CC was a brute, and should not be lauded.

  •  For some reason I thought this was a diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    irate

    about the director Chris Columbus. who's films could be considered a crime against Humanity.

    "We're not rifle shots here. We're Americans." John McCain

    by Larry Madill on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:42:41 AM PDT

  •  zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BenderRodriguez

    Every Columbus Day, someone deeply in love with their own political purity inflicts a diary of this sort on DKos.  It is as inevitable as those asinine dairies on 9/11 that say we shouldn't get all upset about the attack on the World Trade Center because more people are killed every year in auto accidents and by the way, America is the font of all evil and blah blah blah....

    It is of course supremely silly to hang all the crimes of Europe on Columbus. As for Columbus Day, its prominence derives from its status as a day to celebrate the heritage of Italian Americans.  As such, I am more than happy to join in the celebration.

    McCain: Running for Hoover's 21st term

    by Finck II on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 06:53:04 AM PDT

    •  That's right, (2+ / 0-)

      and you can be in good company with him.

      Pilgrims Pilloried in streets of Plymouth

      Hitler wasn't stopped by the Apaches but by the armies of that country whose conception the Plymouth protesters mourn.

      The activists were outraged by my description of the Indians as primitives with a Stone Age culture that had neither a written language, metallurgy nor the wheel.

      Reality is awfully insensitive. Still, it's important to recall that Native Americans did not build great canoes and cross the Big Water to discover Europe.

      Theodore Roosevelt spent several years ranching in the Dakotas while there was still a frontier. In "The Winning of the West," Roosevelt wrote: "Not only were the Indians very terrible in battle, but they were cruel beyond all belief in victory; and the gloomy annals of border warfare are stained with their darkest hues because it was a war in which helpless women and children suffered the same hideous fate that so often befell their husbands and fathers."

      As revisionists mythologize Indians, our earliest English settlers are pilloried. The Rev. Michael Leduc, minister of Plymouth's Unitarian Universalist Church, complains, "There are, unfortunately, people in the world who have an idolatry of the Pilgrims."

      That's a curious word -- "idolatry" -- to describe those who honor the Pilgrims for bringing the Bible to these shores, giving us the Mayflower Compact that laid the foundation for the Constitution and dying in droves that first cruel winter to nurture the seed from which our country would grow.

      Blah blah blah blah.

      She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us. Big Thunder

      by Winter Rabbit on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:02:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My God, what a self righteous bore you are. (1+ / 3-)
        Recommended by:
        Azdak
        Hidden by:
        esquimaux, Winter Rabbit, Urtica dioica gracilis

        The only surprise is how long oit tookl you to frag Hitler into this.

        McCain: Running for Hoover's 21st term

        by Finck II on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:12:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And your TR of me shows you to be a total ass (0+ / 0-)

          But it is not at all surprising.

          McCain: Running for Hoover's 21st term

          by Finck II on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:17:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  hred (3+ / 0-)

          for personal insults. If you actually have a point other than insulting the diarist, make it civilly.

          "Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war" - John Adams

          by esquimaux on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 08:10:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, HRed because you are a schmuck. (0+ / 0-)

            The diarist implies I approve of genocide, I respond by calling him a bore -- and you TR me for alleged personal insults.

            Even you know that this is total bullshit.  You TRed me because you don't agree with my opinions, and then slapped on the fig leaf of a supposed personal insult because you know that in fact Tring for the REAl reason you TRed me is a violation of the FAQS.

            In short, you are a lying scumbag. Go work for McCain, where your sort of fraudulence is a job requirement.

            McCain: Running for Hoover's 21st term

            by Finck II on Mon Oct 13, 2008 at 06:46:48 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  hrd for the personal attack. n/t (0+ / 0-)

          People are important; trifling possessions are not important. Trust me on that one.

          by Urtica dioica gracilis on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 10:50:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You are a liar and a fraud. (0+ / 0-)

            "Bore" is a TR worthy epithet?  That of course is bullshit and you know it.  You of course TRed me because you don't like my opinions, and now you lie about your motivations.  What a cxlownishish schmuck you are.

            I expect your sort of dishonesty from the McCain campaign.  It's a bit of a surprise to see it on DKos, but I suppose it is always worth remembering that assholery is not the exclusive property of the right.

            McCain: Running for Hoover's 21st term

            by Finck II on Mon Oct 13, 2008 at 06:50:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You call me "a liar and a fraud" (3+ / 0-)

              And then you roll out this:

              "Bore" is a TR worthy epithet?  That of course is bullshit and you know it.  You of course TRed me because you don't like my opinions, and now you lie about your motivations.  What a cxlownishish schmuck you are.

              I expect your sort of dishonesty from the McCain campaign.  It's a bit of a surprise to see it on DKos, but I suppose it is always worth remembering that assholery is not the exclusive property of the right.

              You didn't get a free ride to say whatever you wanted to say, so you lash out at everyone who won't put up with your abuse? Are you a control-freak?

              Re: your comment to WB:

              My God, what a self righteous bore you are. []
              The only surprise is how long oit tookl you to frag Hitler into this.

              In addition to your other marginal and offensive comments to WB and others, your personal attack included:

              1. the term: "self-righteous bore";
              1. invocation of Godwin's law relative to WB;
              1. inference that Hitler's atrocities have no semblance to colonial acts against Indians.

              Had you merely called WB a "bore," I would not have considered it hide worthy at all. But you couldn't just leave it at that, could you?

              It appears to me you have little personal experience with the circumstances on which you pass judgment, the broader and continuing ramifications of the events in question, or the perspectives of those who may have those personal experiences. You simply wanted to shut other people's truths down so you didn't have to listen to them.

              Where I live, on the Rez, there are no Columbus Day parades or festivities (and anyone trying to start such would be lucky to merely be run out of town); the only place the US flag flies around here is at the US Post Office and the elementary school; and the consequences of the events set in motion in 1492  play out on a daily basis.

              Indeed, some people are comfortable making idle and thoughtless statements about the extermination of America's indigenous people, or the purported lack of any ongoing significance therefrom, apparently presuming that such a supposed eradication was successful, in toto, and that they are, therefore, insulated from coming across the remnants of those who were not exterminated in such a removed location as Dailykos.  Yet, such is not the case.

              I have watched around here, time and again, as offensive and anti-indigenous comments were lauded; as diaries concerning ongoing subjugation or oppression of tribal people and communities were dismissed or decried as fraudulent, because they made people uncomfortable; because it is too unpleasant and shameful to acknowledge that these inequalities are unabated "in this day and age." And the reality is that the worst acts, too horrifying or shameful, perhaps too unbelievable or difficult to explain, are rarely even reiterated outside of our communities. That's the worst irony. The knee-jerk refusal of the dominant culture, to accept information about injustices in Indian Country, perpetuates the problem; it's too ugly and painful to hear about, so it is, effectively, invisible.

              You want me to condone your bad behavior silently, as my ancestors were forced to do? I don't think so.   You want me to ignore your attempts to shut down someone else troubling you with historical injustice? I don't think so.

              You feel safe making your statements online, but I doubt, sincerely, that you have the courage of your purported convictions to come to this sovereign nation and say these things out loud, publicly, among Indians.

              People are important; trifling possessions are not important. Trust me on that one.

              by Urtica dioica gracilis on Mon Oct 13, 2008 at 02:20:13 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  you are a douchebag; fresh as a summer's eve too (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Urtica dioica gracilis

              they will let anybody on the internet these days...

              I can see the moon from where I live. That should make me qualified to be head of NASA.

              by qi motuoche on Mon Oct 13, 2008 at 09:56:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Nothing to do with "purity," (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rincewind, esquimaux, Winter Rabbit

      The "purity"  charge is usually a cheap avoidance technique.  Columbus was a bloody slave trader and exploiter.  There are so many Italian Americans who could serve the role you attribute to Columbus, who himself was not an "Italian-American."

      "World peace through non-violent means is neither absurd nor unattainable. All other methods have failed." MLK

      by SmedleyButlerUSMC on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 07:03:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Rec, even if too many pics. (0+ / 0-)

    Do we really need two photos of the statue?

    The important thing here is that we need to reject this colonial, imperialistic mentality.

    For example, during the Dem Primary, there was a candidate who had the arrogance to suggest that Iraq be split up into different nations. Who the Fuck was he to decide such a thing??? He lost the primary. But it just goes to show you this imperialistic mentality is alive and well in even the Democratic Party. Not to mention this thinking was alive and well when Johnson was dropping bombs on Vietnam (who palled around with LBJ?) or when Democrats suggest we send MORE troops to Afghanistan, or invade Pakistan. Or oppose indigenous people's most basic rights in Palestine.

  •  thank you, WR (3+ / 0-)

    Almost 20 yrs ago my daughter (who was then 7 or 8) asked me for a length of black ribbon to wear on her arm on the October Federal holiday. Since then, we have honored it as a day of mourning and remembrance.

    To those who say "you can't blame it all on poor Columbus", I say I blame him to the exact degree the fed gov't and majority of Americans credit him. As long as he gets a fed holiday named in his 'honor' as a representative of all Euros who conquered the Americas -- that's how long I will 'blame' him as a representative of all Euros who conquered the Americas.

    To those who think some of us are foolish to dwell on past injustice, I'm with Joe Biden (and Shakespeare): what's past is prologue. To this very day, poverty, disease, and violence are still decimating native people far in excess of the general population.

    And how far into the past is anger justifiable to you? Do I have your permission to be angry about the fact that my ex's FATHER was one of the thousands of children removed from his home and family and sent to "boarding school"? Stripped of his language, culture, and bonds of love and community -- and as an adult, unable to reform those bonds; virtually unparented, unable to teach himself how to be a parent; dying much too young of the twin evils of diabetes and alcoholism; depriving MY DAUGHTER of ever knowing her grandfather -- is that current enough for me to be angry about?

    No Justice, No Peace

    IMPEACH "...so that no future president may infer that we have implicitly sanctioned what we have not explicitly condemned." John Conyers, 1974

    by rincewind on Sun Oct 12, 2008 at 08:06:31 AM PDT

  •  Lots of info here........ (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks.............for all of the work.....

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