- History.com Staff. “Columbus Controversy.” History.com, A+E Networks, 2009,www.history.com/topics/exploration/columbus-controversy. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
SUMMARY: Because of the actions Christopher Columbus took in order to discover the New World, it is safe to say that many of his actions were questionable and created devastating problems for the Native American community. Such of these issues were the mistreatment of Natives—forcing them into slavery. Along with that, Natives were exposed to deadly diseases brought over by Columbus and other Europeans. This deal between the Europeans and Natives is usually referred to as the “Colombian Exchange” by historians alike.
STATEMENT: One reason why it’s safe to say that Columbus Day should no longer be celebrated as a national holiday is fact that we should not support and celebrate a man who willingly and acknowledging mistreated Natives in their own homeland. When the Europeans come over, they brought with them power that the Natives could not compete with. They were forced to comply with the requests made by foreigners in their own land, bringing these Natives into slavery. Additionally, Columbus Day should no longer be seen as a national holiday because of the mistreatment of Natives biologically. Within the Colombian Exchange, the Europeans spread diseases to the Natives, exposing them to life-long issues. Columbus treated the Natives this way because he saw them as just an obstacle for him to overcome, but by seeing these people this way, he completely overlooked the fact that these people are native to this land, and a bunch of foreigner from Europe came in to tell these people how to operate.
- Weiner, Eric, and Russell Freedman. “Coming to America: Who was First?” NPR, NPR, 8 Oct. 2007, npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=15040888. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
SUMMARY: Contrary to what is taught in many history textbooks and what many people grow up to believe, there is evidential proof that Christopher Columbus was not the first person to discover the New World. In this webpage article, the fact that the Vikings and the Chinese had an impact on the New World prior to Columbus was mentioned along with the fact that something cannot be discovered if there were already people inhabiting the land.
STATEMENT: Another reason as to why Columbus Day should no longer be celebrated is because he did not actually discover this country. Many pro-Columbus advocates praise Columbus’s actions towards the advancement of the development of the New World as being noteworthy and reason as to why he should be revered. The fact of the matter is, however, that Columbus did not discover America. Firstly, he did not discover America because you cannot discover a land that a group of people already inhabited. Additionally, Columbus was not the first person to visit the New World and is another reason why he should not be given credit for “finding America” because this statement simply is not true. There is proof that the Vikings and China both had an impact on the New World prior to Columbus landing shore. The reaction that the Natives had towards the Vikings was similar to that of Columbus—resentment for intruding on their land. Nonetheless, there is evidence that Columbus was not the first person to make it to America. Why is his impact seen so grand then? Historians concur that the reason Columbus’s voyage is seen in such a great light is because Columbus was able to connect America with Europe—a high status country that would allow for greater opportunities and faster developments for the New World.
- History.com Staff. “Christopher Columbus.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 2009, www.history.com/topics/exploration/christopher-columbus. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
SUMMARY: Christopher Columbus has a major impact on the history of America. He was determined to find a direct route from West Europe to Asia, but instead he landed in the New World where he “discovered” America. His stumble upon this land began the start of trans-Atlantic trade and conquest. His voyage was sponsored by King Ferdinand and Queen Elizabeth because they both wanted fame and fortune, but the royals also wanted to spread Catholicism, and exploring would be a perfect way to spread the religion. Even though Columbus was able to spread Christianity as well as open up trade between Europe and the New World, that does not take away the fact that his actions towards the Natives was unjust and a valid reason as to why Columbus Day should not be celebrated. “Today, Columbus has a mixed legacy—he is remembered as a daring and path-breaking explorer who transformed the New World, yet his actions also unleashed changes that would eventually devastate the native populations he and his fellow explorers encountered.”
STATEMENT: Columbus is known throughout history as being a discoverer of the New World, in a sense, starting the foundations of the United States. This idea, however, should not be continued as being the norm simply because the way he treated the Natives was against the initial plan that the Queen and King had. This is shown because Columbus was chastised for the mistreatment of the Natives. Even though Columbus was successful in spreading Catholicism as well as connecting the New World with Europe, his efforts in doing so are not justified by the horrible way that he enslaved the Natives in their own lands. He came in and told the Natives what to do despite the fact that they were already living there. This is why there is a mix sentiment towards Columbus and his “discovery” of America. Despite his success in the other two aspects, they are invalid because the efforts that were taken in order to achieve those goals do not justify the end. The ends do not justify the means.
- “The Catholic Venture of Christopher Columbus.” org, 10 Oct 2016, Catholicism.org/Columbus.html. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
SUMMARY: In the eyes of some, the actions that Columbus took in order to spread Catholicism were justified because the purpose was to spread the religion. According to this reading, many religious head figures saw Columbus’s quest for trying to bring the truth to the Natives. This idea, however, creates a belief that it was okay for Columbus to intrude on the Native’s land and force a religion upon them as if Columbus knew what was in the best interest for these people. Pope Leo XIII wrote in praise of Christopher Columbus: “By his toil . . . hundreds of thousands of mortals have, from a state of blindness, been raised to the common level of the human race, reclaimed from savagery to gentleness and humanity, and, greatest of all, by the acquisition of those blessings of which Jesus Christ is the Author, they have been recalled from destruction to eternal life.”
STATEMENT: This article praises Columbus for his quest to spread the truth to the Natives living in the New World. The problem that arises with this article is that it completely dismisses the actions that were taken in order to convert the Natives to Christianity, as well as fails to consider the fact that Columbus forcibly brought religion to the Natives who already had their own beliefs set. This dominance over someone else’s land is another reason as to why Columbus Day should no longer be celebrated—it accepts the over-dominance that the Europeans exercised towards the Natives of the New World. It creates this idea that the Natives were some sort of “savages” that needed to be saved by Christianity as if their belief system was not good enough in comparison to Christianity. This article made it seem like the Europeans were doing the Natives some sort of favor for bringing Christianity to them and forcing them to convert to this new religion.