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It is fair to make  Columbus a symbol for the "savage injustice" committed by the Europeans against the natives. Columbus was enormously successful in marketing his mix of "God, Glory & Gold" to Europe. His failure to find significant gold on Hispaniola made him the first transatlantic slave trader in order to pay dividends to his investors. 
However, the Age of Discovery that he is credited with introducing was inevitable, and the collision of the worlds where one sought to enslave the other had gone on for all of recorded history. Columbus was the messenger of the spirit of his times, the zeitgeist, which both science and religion tell us is now concluding a major cycle as the year 2012 approaches. 

Columbus day, 
the day all people of Indian ancestry curse Christopher Columbus' birth. 

"Endless testimonies ... prove the mild and pacific temperament of the natives. . - . But our work was to exasperate, ravage, kill, mangle and destroy; small wonder, then, if they tried to kill one of us now and then.... The admiral, it is true, was blind as those who came after him, and he was so anxious to please the King that he committed irreparable crimes against the Indians...."
Bartolome' de las Casas 

Within 25 years, the Taino Indians on the island that Columbus first settled would be reduced by 95% from 300,000 in 1492 to 12,000 by 1517, a pattern which was to be repeated throughout the Americas.

  Those that remained were at first evaluated as potential slaves by Columbus. Writing about the fierce Carib's who likely wiped out his first settlement of 39 men on the north coast of Haiti Columbus said, 

"a wild people fit for any work, well proportioned, and very intelligent, and who when they got rid of their cruel habits to which they have become accustomed, will be better than any kind of slaves." or Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia
Although he was always judged to be vain, ambitious, greedy, and ruthless, traditional historians viewed his voyages as opening the New World to Western civilization and Christianity. 
For revisionist historians, however, his voyages symbolize the more brutal aspects of European colonization and represent the beginning of the destruction of Native American peoples and culture. 
"One point of agreement among all interpretations is that his voyages were one of the turning points in history."

|| Early Years || Voyages to the New World || Historical Perspective || Bibliography  

Two leading spokepersons 
from the Left and Right
 express their views on Columbus place in history 

Chomsky photo"October 11, 1992 brings to an end the 500th year of the Old World order, sometimes called the Columbian era or the Vasco da Gama era depending upon which conquerors bent on plunder got there first. Or "the 500-year Reich" 

Columbus has metamorphosed from a grand crusader into a genocidal maniac and a precursor to Hitler. American Indians are now beyond reproach, canonized as moral and ecological saints.

Domination through Brutality: 
"As Adam Smith observed, European success was a tribute to its mastery of the means and immersion in the culture of violence. "Warfare in India was still a sport," John Keay observes: "in Europe it had become a science." From a European perspective, the global conquests were "small wars," and were so considered by military authorities, Geoffrey Parker writes, pointing out that "Cortés conquered Mexico with perhaps 500 Spaniards; Pizarro overthrew the Inca empire with less than 200; and the entire Portuguese empire [from Japan to southern Africa] was administered and defended by less than 10,000 Europeans."

"The savage injustice of the Europeans rendered an event that ought to  have been beneficial to all, ruinous and destructive to several of those unfortunate countries," Adam Smith wrote in 1776, proving him to be an early practitioner of the crime of political correctness to borrow some rhetoric of contemporary cultural management."

"While modalities have changed the fundamental themes of the conquest retain their vitality and resilience and will continue to do so until the reality and causes of the "savage injustice" are honestly addressed."

at amazon now"The Savage Injustice of the Europeans" Year 501 Copyright © 1993 
by Noam Chomsky

The Crimes of Christopher Columbus  
from First Things. by Dinesh D'Souza

"Multiculturalism is better understood as a civil conflict within the Western academy over contrasting approaches to learning about the world..... Consequently multiculturalism in practice is distinguished by an effort to establish cultural parity by attacking the historical and contemporary hegemony of Western civilization. To do it, activists draw heavily on such leftist movements as Marxism, deconstructionism, and anticolonial or Third World nationalism...........

Because of his defense of the West, Vargas Llosa has been criticized for advancing a reactionary position. Yet in a similar vein the left-wing Mexican novelist and diplomat Carlos Fuentes argues that the Europeans prevailed over the Indians because their empirical approach to knowledge gave them enormous civilizational confidence. By contrast, the Indians relied on a combination of direct perception, dreams, hallucination, and appeals to the spirits. Fuentes writes in The Buried Mirror, "The so-called discovery of America, whatever one might ideologically think about it, was a great triumph of scientific hypothesis over physical perception."

The object is not diversity but knowledge: students should learn ways to seek to distinguish truth from falsehood, beauty from vulgarity, right from wrong. Knowledge is both a matter of ascertaining fact and a developing of the tools to formulate the "right opinion."

Find more info at or D'souza by google or
the India-born D'Souza describes his encounter with the United States, first as an immigrant and now as a citizen. . "I am constantly surprised by how much I hear racism talked about and how little I actually see it," he writes.


"Unlike the Western tradition, which presumes some absolute concept of objective truth, and consequently, one "factual" depiction of history, the indigenous view recognizes that there exist many truths in the world and many legitimate recollections of any given historical event, depending on one's perspective and experiences." 
Glenn Morris and Russell Means AIM


"We should honor Western civilization not for the ethnocentric reason that some of us happen to have European ancestors but because it is the objectively superior culture. Underlying the political collectivism of the anti-Columbus crowd is a racist view of human nature. They claim that one's identity is primarily ethnic:"

Michael S. Berliner, Ph.D.,  Ayn Rand Institute in Marina del Rey, California

Columbus or Indigenous People's Day

its still the Story of the Americas

The Land of Immigrants Sharing a Golden Dream

Should the Columbus Day weekend observance at  least begin with the mandate that, as we move on into the future we should engage the memory of others who enlarged the world consciousness?

Columbus as American Icon in History 

"We arouse and arrange our memories to suit our psychic needs." -- Michael Kammen

1792: King's College of New York changed its name to Columbia, and the new capitol in Washington was subtitled District of Columbia, in deference to those who would name the country after Columbus.
The undeniable effectiveness of the politics of hate means we will frequently have to filter attempts to  exploit what are called "wedge issues," which work the ethnic and cultural fault lines of  diverse nations for political gain.
COLUMN LEFT by Robert S. McElvaine

full text of column

"The major long-term significance of Columbus' voyage is that it led to the mixing of the people of the world on an unprecedented scale and set in motion the process of making what would become the United States the most ethnically diverse society the world has known.

The key question about the sort of society that issued from the mixing of people following Columbus' voyage has always been whether diversity is a blessing or a curse."

" It is against the centrifugal forces inevitable in such a society that the Pledge of Allegiance speaks. If such a nation is to survive, special efforts must be made to bring different people together and make them understand that they are one nation.

Robert S. McElvaine

For most of our lives, Indians or the original Americans have been celebrated for their indomitable spirit and wisdom of living in harmony with nature.  These stories are repeated throughout the Americas. Here's one from Cuba. 
Hautly the Hero 
the indigenous Cuban who first fought for human rights
While his body was descending to his grave, the other Spaniards, who followed his path toward the lands of gold, armed with the sword and the cross, were already spotting the soil with the blood of the Indians, culminating their adventure by condemning chief Hautey to be burned alive for the crime of opposing the conquest of Catholic missions in his land.
Columbus had found a world for Spain, says, Sparks, but she was not fit to retain it. ''Cuba has passed over four hundred years beyond the purple curtain and contrary to their expectations, Hautey's name is remembered and repeated by all Cubans, young and old, as the symbol of martyrdom for human rights. The children in school learned the principles of patriotism in the heroism of Hautey, and yet we have not seen the depths of infamy, the blood left by its martyrs and heroes along the trails upon which Latin America has sought the sunlit heights of liberty. 

Buddy Dano, Pastor Divine Viewpoint  Hautey the Hero 

The Inca Civilization 
The magnificence and benevolence of the Inca Empire was corroborated by Mancio Serra de Leguicamo, one of the Spanish conquerors of Peru, who confessed to the King of Spain:

"...that we found these lands in such a state that there was not even a robber or a vicious or idle man, or adulterous or immoral woman: all such conduct was forbidden. Immoral persons could not exist and everyone had honest and profitable occupations....Everything from the most important to the least was ordered and harmonized with great wisdom. The Incas were feared, obeyed, respected, and venerated by their subjects, who considered them to be most capable lords....We have transformed the Indians who had such wisdom and committed so few crimes, excesses, or extravagances that the owner of 100,000 pesos of gold or silver would leave his door open placing a broom fixed to a bit of wood across the entrance to show that he was absent: this sign was enough to prevent anyone from entering or taking anything. Thus they scorned us when they saw among us thieves and men who incited their wives and daughters to sin....This kingdom has fallen into such has passed from one extreme to another. There was no evil: now there is almost no good."

Since it underscores the distinction between Ancient and Modern societies, we must note that de Leguicamo was so utterly fearful of the Spanish nation of which he was a citizen, that he only dared to make this confession posthumously, in a codicil to his will.

The Invention of Race (14) || home

About the Taino
the natives from the most mounTAINOus Caribbean islands of the Puerto Rico and Hispaniola  who warmly welcomed  Columbus when he turned up unannounced on their doorstep Official Puerto Rican Tribal site 
"A 1511 edict defined as Caribs any Indians who were hostile to Europeans, behaved violently, or consumed human flesh. Caribs, the edict concluded, were without souls, and so were suitable subjects for the slave trade." By Howard Zinn
Columbus, the Indians, & Human Progress
Featuring many quotes from the early history written by Bartolome' de las Casas

Why American Indian Movement (AIM) Prefers a different name forColumbus Day Celebrations  
by Russell Means and Glenn Morris 1991 


Columbus Day or Indigenous People's Day 

is also Immigrant's Day

The Land of Immigrants Sharing a Golden Dream

The Coming of the Italians to Chautauqua County
By Samuel C. Alessi

On the eve of July 4, our ship gracefully steamed into New York harbor. It was a beautiful warm and bright evening. All the buildings on lower Manhattan were lit up as if they had prepared a welcome to the one thousand or so  immigrants about to land on American soil. It was a thrilling sight to a boy of twelve years who ever since he could  remember longed to go to America. Next day he would begin his new life in this beloved land and soon become an American. A youthful dream was being realized. I believe that that was not only my feeling. It was the feeling of every immigrant who sought this promised land.


LINK LISTS Project  Resource Links
Immigration Links by
Statue of Liberty Links
Human Rights Library at Univ. of Minnesota
Immigrant Rights by ACLU
Collective Vision Sights including The 911 Digital Archive

On a tiny island at the entrance to New York harbor stands the majestic statue of a woman facing the sea. In her right hand, stretched toward the skies, she holds a lighted torch to light the way and guide the millions seeking refuge to the land of freedom and opportunity. In her left hand she holds a book of laws. That is the Statue of Liberty - - a statue which, once seen, can never be forgotten; a statue which exemplifies liberty under the law- - truly the spirit of America.

On a tablet inside the pedestal upon which it stands the world is invited in these passionate and dramatic words:  

Give me your tired, your poor
Your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest tossed to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door.

That the poor, the tired, and those who yearned to breathe free heeded that call is attested by one of the greatest migrations of peoples the world has ever known. The statue was erected in 1886. From 1886 to 1914, a period of 28 years, 17 million immigrants from every corner of the globe sought and found a haven in this wonderful land. Between 1820 and 1958, 41 million - - equal to the population of France - - came from every nation on earth, from every walk of life, each contributing his bit in his own way to the American life and culture which we now enjoy. Among this vast multitude was the poor, often illiterate, but industrious, hard-working, patient, intelligent and talented Italian immigrant.

In order to understand what is meant by Italian immigrant, it is necessary to be reminded that the political unity of the people of the Italian peninsula and of Sicily was not realized until 1860, and then only in part. For centuries prior to 1860, the southern part of Italy and Sicily were ruled by foreign governments which oppressed and exploited the people. The medieval feudal system of land tenure under those governments was in force until after 1815. Under such a system, no matter how industrious and ambitious the people were, they were unable to rise above the condition of sharecroppers, comparable to the sharecroppers of our own south. Even after 1860 the feudal estates were kept intact. There was no land which the landless peasants could work and produce food badly needed, except on the oppressive terms of the owner or of the lessee of the feudal state.

These conditions were not much improved by the newly formed Italian state. On the contrary, in some instances, they became even worse. more

Paper delivered to the Chautauqua County Historical Society at Westfield, N.Y.  
August 6, 1960
full text
The importance of Columbus Day 
By Bill Clinton 2000
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From the deepest oceans
Image:Bill Clinton.jpg
to the outermost reaches of space to the genetic code of human life. The same adventurous spirit that propelled Columbus' explorations will enable us to challenge old assumptions, acquire new knowledge, and broaden the horizons of humankind.

Columbus' story illustrates the importance of diversity.
Columbus was born and raised in Italy; he learned much of his
seafaring knowledge and experience from Portuguese sailors and navigators; and he put those skills in service to the King and Queen of Spain, who funded his explorations. By establishing a
safe, reliable route between Europe and the New World, Columbus opened the door for subsequent explorers from Spain, France, and England and for the millions of immigrants who would be welcomed by America in later centuries. But the encounters between Columbus and other European Explorers and the native peoples of the Western
Hemisphere also underscore what can happen when cultures clash and when we are unable to understand and respect people who are different from us.
more from President Bill Clinton on Columbus Day 2000
It is in this same spirit that proposes more cruisers explore the Gulf of Paria and the Orinoco River
Agência Brasil
Hugo Chávez walks with Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva - March 29, 2005.

Checking Out Chavez’s Venezuela Berkeley Daily Planet, CA - Dec 29, 2006

In 2003, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez urged Latin Americans to not celebrate the Columbus Day holiday. Chavez blamed Columbus for leading the way in the mass genocide of the Native Americans.
Chavez Calls Bush "The Devil"
 Hugo Chavez Speech at the UN on September 20th,2006 broadcast on Fox

"Representatives of the governments of the world, good morning to all of you. First of all, I would like to invite you, very respectfully, to those who have not read this book, to read it.
Noam Chomsky, one of the most prestigious American and world intellectuals, Noam Chomsky, and this is one of his most recent books, Hegemony or Survival: The Imperialist Strategy of the United States.  It’s an excellent book to help us understand what has been happening in the world throughout the 20th century, and what’s happening now, and the greatest threat looming over our planet.
The hegemonic pretensions of the American empire are placing at risk the very survival of the human species. We continue to warn you about this danger and we appeal to the people of the United States and the world to halt this threat, which is like a sword hanging over our heads....We want ideas to save our planet, to save the planet from the imperialist threat. And hopefully in this very century, in not too long a time, we will see this, we will see this new era, and for our children and our grandchildren a world of peace based on the fundamental principles of the United Nations, but a renewed United Nations.
And maybe we have to change location. Maybe we have to put the United Nations somewhere else; maybe a city of the south. We’ve proposed Venezuela.

In an interview later with CNN en Español, Chavez said he had good relations with President Clinton, but of Bush he said, "With this cowboy you can't even talk ... the Texan who walks around shooting from the hip."

Today we have other worlds to explore --
Regarding them as sinners, he was interested only in the ones who could lead him to gold, and it wasn't long before he was proposing shipping Indians back to Spain as slaves. But the Catholic kings had qualms - surprisingly, since there was a flourishing market in Spain for African slaves. They summoned a committee, which thought that, on the whole, it was not right. The monarchs ordered that, so long as the natives were "submissive", they should be treated well and educated. Each family should have its own house, and mixed marriages were to be encouraged.


Clash of civilizations, from cartoons to the pope, the riotous debate.
It is still arguable whether political scientist Samuel Huntington's thesis that a "clash of civilizations" between European-rooted liberalism, respect for reason, and tolerance, and Islamic-rooted religious enthusiasm is an inevitable part of our future. But several events this past year suggest the danger level is high.

When in January cartoons by a few previously obscure Danish cartoonists were published, some of which lampooned the Prophet Muhammad, complaints were not enough for some Islamic enthusiasts. Instead there were riots in the Middle East and threats in Denmark, purposely orchestrated by ambitious mullahs. Later in the year, when Pope Benedict XVI quoted a 14th-century pope who was critical of Islam – in the context of a nuanced discussion of the difficulty of reconciling faith and reason – churches were burned, and a nun was shot in the back.

Furthermore, restive Muslims rioted in France, and native-born Britons planted bombs on the subway. Europe has little experience with cultural assimilation, but it will have to get up to speed quickly. Moderate Muslims – still the vast majority – need to step up and serve as bridges between cultures. And if the U.S. ever hopes to neutralize "Islamofascist" terrorism it will have to learn a lot more about Islam and how to talk with sincere but reasonable believers.


  • While many in the United States of America generally refer to the country as America and themselves as Americans,[1] many people elsewhere in the Americas resent what they perceive as appropriation of the term in this context and, thus, this usage is frequently avoided. In Canada, their southern neighbour is seldom referred to as "America" with "the United States", "the U.S.", or (informally) "the States" The most common way to distinguish is singular/plural or America/Americas and adding "the" with the plural "s" is even more clear.
  • A hemispheric free-trade agreement, long a goal of U.S. policy, seems like a long shot as "populist" rulers love to blame the poverty of their countries on the very activity – international trade – that stands the best chance of relieving it.