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Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: samintx
Date: October 08, 2018 01:27PM
Columbus didn't discover the USA, wiped out the native in the Cuba area. Why can't it be a holiday like Pickle Day with the PO open and Banks OPen? Why do they have to close on "Columbus Day"?

Maybe it should be a Catholic Holiday because they colonized the Indians into Catholic faith. Like go to Church instead of closing the Banks.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: rjmacs
Date: October 08, 2018 01:36PM
The simple answer is white supremacy.

The complicated answer is also white supremacy.

We like to lionize key historical figures and simultaneously sanitize and concretize the narratives that support the status quo. Once their stories are mythologized (and Columbus is thoroughly so by now), it's a lot harder to displace, because then it's part of our shared story of selfhood.

It's a lot easier to stomach a bright-smiled clear-eyed Italian explorer, seeking new lands and converts to his cherished faith than it is to celebrate the incursion of a treasure-seeking mercenary into new lands ripe for plunder, raping, enslaving, and massacring indigenous people for fun and profit.



rj
AKA
Vreemac, Moth of the Future
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Rolando
Date: October 08, 2018 02:06PM
This is America. Feel free to Not Celebrate. Or Celebrate humanity. EDIT, I'm gonna take down that pic! It's something Else. Thanks Colegio Yepeyu!



San Antonio, TX (in the old city)

"Trump is a moron." -- Steve G.

"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing."
-- Edmund Burke
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." Theodore Roosevelt (1918)




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 02:07PM by Rolando.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: $tevie
Date: October 08, 2018 02:48PM
It's bizarre that it is still a bank and government holiday. I have never worked in a place that closed for Columbus Day, neither in any of the ad agencies nor in the college I ended up working for.

Aside from the complaints about racism and genocide and rewritten history, the plain fact is that it is and always was a dumb holiday even if you buy into the Columbus Discovered America fairy tale, foisted upon us by the Knights of Columbus back in an era when people actually had heard of the Knights of Columbus. The entire holiday is one big FAIL.



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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: davester
Date: October 08, 2018 02:55PM
I partly, but not fully agree with Sam's depiction. Columbus discovered the caribbean islands and central America, but didn't explore more northerly areas including what is now the US. AFAIK he and his exploration parties didn't kill natives, at least in any great numbers, although they did enslave some. However, they did unknowingly bring diseases from the old world (notably smallpox) as well as taking diseases (notably syphilis) and tobacco from the new world back to the old world. These exchanges had major negative impacts in both the new and old worlds since no resistance to the diseases existed where they were newly introduced and both of those diseases were deadly.

The bigger impact of Columbus's voyages was the subsequent invasion by the spanish conquistadors which resulted in further disease propagation, enslavement, and significant violence when the natives resisted the invaders.

However, discovery of the new world by the old world and resulting conquest was going to happen eventually even if Columbus hadn't been the first European to arrive. Therefore, putting the trials and tribulations of the natives all on Columbus's explorations is a bit ridiculous IMHO.

Also note that prior to Columbus arriving there were large violent conflicts between a number of caribbean and american tribes. The arrival of the Spanish was not the start of violence in the Americas.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 03:01PM by davester.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: October 08, 2018 02:59PM
1) It's an Italian heritage holiday. Lots of Italian voters out there to make happy.
2) Europeans discovering that the Americas exist was a profound cultural/world view shock.
3) Don't get me started about the Spanish in 1492.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 03:00PM by Steve G..
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: rjmacs
Date: October 08, 2018 03:29PM
Lots of whitewashing in this post, so I'll refer to a 2015 Vox article to highlight where accuracy is lacking. The article itself is largely based on a well-researched and reviewed book by Laurence Bergreen called Columbus: The Four Voyages.

I guess if you can excuse:

  • Giving a kidnapped and enslaved native woman to one of his crew members to be raped and tortured into submission
  • Allowing 9- and 10- year old girls to be sold for sex during his rule in the Caribbean
  • Mutilating living indigeneous people (chopping off body parts, etc.) as a form of public intimidation
  • Using indigenous people as slave labor and compelling them to pay tribute to Spain or be killed
  • Standing by as the population of Hispanola is wiped out, over 50,000 committing suicide rather than be subjugated, ultimately leaving fewer than 500 people out of an original population of roughly 300,000 left on the island within 50 years of his arrival.

Then he's just another explorer, and oopsie-poopsie-sorry-about-the-genocide!

Quote
davester
I partly, but not fully agree with Sam's depiction. Columbus discovered the caribbean islands and central America, but didn't explore more northerly areas including what is now the US. AFAIK he and his exploration parties didn't kill natives, at least in any great numbers, although they did enslave some.

However, they did unknowingly bring diseases from the old world (notably smallpox) as well as taking diseases (notably syphilis) and tobacco from the new world back to the old world. These exchanges had major negative impacts in both the new and old worlds since no resistance to the diseases existed where they were newly introduced and both of those diseases were deadly.

The bigger impact of Columbus's voyages was the subsequent invasion by the spanish conquistadors which resulted in further disease propagation, enslavement, and significant violence when the natives resisted the invaders.

Also note that prior to Columbus arriving there were large violent conflicts between a number of caribbean and american tribes. The arrival of the Spanish was not the start of violence in the Americas.

Edit: if you can point me to some historic research on the, "large violent conflicts between a number of caribbean and american tribes," I'm very interested to learn more.



rj
AKA
Vreemac, Moth of the Future




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 03:32PM by rjmacs.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Acer
Date: October 08, 2018 03:59PM
Quote
rjmacs
Edit: if you can point me to some historic research on the, "large violent conflicts between a number of caribbean and american tribes," I'm very interested to learn more.

One example, [en.wikipedia.org]

This may pale in comparison to the violence Europe brought with it, but violent elements exist throughout human cultures world-wide.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: October 08, 2018 03:59PM
The wars, enslavements and conquests record of the Incas, Aztecs and Iroquois might interest you.

That said. The Spaniards were out and out murderers motivated by greed, religious extremism and hundreds of years of torture, persecution, warfare and mass murder against anybody they didn't like.
(They capped off 1492 by killing and expelling all the Jews from Spain and then merciless tortured, burned and hanged any they suspected of not being 'of the faith'. The Inquisition is infamous for good reasons.)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 04:02PM by Steve G..
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: davester
Date: October 08, 2018 04:02PM
Quote
rjmacs
Lots of whitewashing in this post, so I'll refer to a 2015 Vox article to highlight where accuracy is lacking.

I did not engage in any whitewashing. I simply did a google search for columbus and native cubans and reviewed several of the more informative appearing hits on the first couple of pages. I have not heard of the article you cite. If it is accurate then I am surprised that nothing like what you have claimed came up. That doesn't mean it's wrong, but that more research is needed.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: DeusxMac
Date: October 08, 2018 04:20PM
Quote
rjmacs
if you can point me to some historic research on the, "large violent conflicts between a number of caribbean and american tribes," I'm very interested to learn more.

I’d recommend you read 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus.

It might revise your opinions regarding the “First People” of the Americas, and the arrival of the Europeans.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: October 08, 2018 04:32PM
Also don't forget the overall effect on the American biome.. the "Columbia Exchange".

[en.wikipedia.org]
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: btfc
Date: October 08, 2018 04:34PM
"I’d recommend you read 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus. "

An interesting book, although some of its conclusions have been vigorously challenged by scholars. Another interesting read is "Guns, Germs and Steel".

History has almost always been written by the conquerors; Caucasians didn't invent conquest, torture, brutality, or slavery and it is extremely naive to suggest that they have some monopoly on such behaviors.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 04:35PM by btfc.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: October 08, 2018 06:29PM
Indigenous peoples of the continental US were violent as you could not imagine to one another, hence the now derogatory term, "savages." not to dismiss the savages that came from Europe, but that just means they were all savages.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/08/2018 06:32PM by mrbigstuff.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: rjmacs
Date: October 08, 2018 07:02PM
Wow. I never said anything about the peoples of the Americas not waging war, or having slaves, or being mean. But you know what they didn't do? They didn't wholesale genocidally extinguish one another to the point of almost complete annihilation.

White colonizers did do that, though, to basically every indigenous group in the Americas. And it wasn't just disease and displacement; it was wide-scale murder, rape, enslavement, etc.

Y'all have drunk the Koolaid.



rj
AKA
Vreemac, Moth of the Future
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Carnos Jax
Date: October 08, 2018 07:23PM
I think what rjmacs says is key. It's the magnitude of the crime that makes it different. Otherwise for example, what's the difference between global (or American) anti-semitism to what the Nazi's did? Or what happened to African Americans in this country through the horror of slavery?
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: btfc
Date: October 08, 2018 07:48PM
"They didn't wholesale genocidally extinguish one another to the point of almost complete annihilation."


Actually, they did. Some of the South and Central American civilizations did exactly that as noted above. Do your homework and grow up.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Speedy
Date: October 08, 2018 09:31PM
Quote
btfc
"They didn't wholesale genocidally extinguish one another to the point of almost complete annihilation."


Actually, they did. Some of the South and Central American civilizations did exactly that as noted above. Do your homework and grow up.

This is still happening today.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: Rolando
Date: October 08, 2018 09:40PM
I can tell you that in my research, there was a lot of warfare in PreColumbian times, and there are Viking records of a not so warm welcome... but with no firearms, the killing was just not very ... efficient.

There was a huge amount of genocide by the Spaniards, and the by the English, later on. The Spanish eventually stopped massacring as the natives became mostly serf laborers. The English and Americans did not stop until they reduced the natives to about 1%.

Best estimates are 90-95% deaths due to disease. South America has only recently recovered its PreColumbian population. The New Englands colonists named many places *field, because they found these wonderful cleared fields, fields that were cleared by Natives that had died out only a generation ago, from European diseases.



San Antonio, TX (in the old city)

"Trump is a moron." -- Steve G.

"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing."
-- Edmund Burke
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." Theodore Roosevelt (1918)
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: bfd
Date: October 09, 2018 07:43PM
Quote
btfc
Do your homework and grow up.

LMAO

When someone going by the moniker Bozo The Fscking Clown is suggesting that others grow up.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: DeusxMac
Date: October 09, 2018 08:04PM
Quote
rjmacs
Wow. I never said anything about the peoples of the Americas not waging war, or having slaves, or being mean. But you know what they didn't do? They didn't wholesale genocidally extinguish one another to the point of almost complete annihilation.

White colonizers did do that, though, to basically every indigenous group in the Americas. And it wasn't just disease and displacement; it was wide-scale murder, rape, enslavement, etc.

Y'all have drunk the Koolaid.

"The wars were brutal and are considered one of the bloodiest series of conflicts in the history of North America. As the Iroquois destroyed several large tribal confederacies—including the Huron, Neutral, Erie, Susquehannock, and Shawnee, they became dominant in the region and enlarged their territory, realigning the tribal geography of North America. They pushed some eastern tribes to the west of the Mississippi River, or southward into the Carolinas. The Iroquois gained control of the Ohio River valley lands as hunting ground, from about 1670 onward. The Ohio Country and the Lower Peninsula of Michigan had become virtually empty of Native people as refugees fled westward to escape the Iroquois warriors."

"Warfare was most intense along the Missouri River in the present-day Dakotas, where ancestors of the Mandans, Hidatsas, and Arikaras were at war with each other, and towns inhabited by as many as 1,000 people were often fortified with ditch and palisade defenses. Excavations at the Crow Creek site, an ancestral Arikara town dated to 1325, revealed the bodies of 486 people–men, women, and children, essentially the town's entire population–in a mass grave. These individuals had been scalped and dismembered..."


[uapress.arizona.edu]

[plainshumanities.unl.edu]



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/09/2018 08:10PM by DeusxMac.
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Re: Why is today a holiday?
Posted by: rjmacs
Date: October 10, 2018 12:49PM
I love how I keep reiterating those things I am and am not claiming, and y'all keep coming back addressing points I'm not making.



rj
AKA
Vreemac, Moth of the Future
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