Columbus Day? True Legacy: Cruelty and Slavery
huffingtonPost / Eric Kasum
12-Oct-2010 (4 comments)

Once again, it's time to celebrate Columbus Day. Yet, the stunning truth is: If Christopher Columbus were alive today, he would be put on trial for crimes against humanity. Columbus' reign of terror, as documented by noted historians, was so bloody, his legacy so unspeakably cruel, that Columbus makes a modern villain like Saddam Hussein look like a pale codfish.

Question: Why do we honor a man who, if he were alive today, would almost certainly be sitting on Death Row awaiting execution?

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What we have is a total

by Escape on

What we have is a total lack of understanding of History.Columbus's voyage in 1492 was the Discovery of the America's to what not only began many other voyages but was the first chartered.Now to understand why this is significant and why we celebrate it mean's you have to have the intelligence to understand the meaning of Chartered.Instead those who don't (Like the author) just simply view it as conceited.It was such an important discovery to the 'Old World' the term 'New World" evolved.

It would be more appropiate to ask our Latin American friends who also Celebrate the Holiday throughout Latin America,why they Celebrate Columbus day? You might as well also ask them why they celebrate anything in Spanish?

I know noone would ask the author these questions on the Huffington Post site because they all know they would be removed from the site in a prompt fascistic style.

It is not possible for the Huffington Post blogger mentality to envision Celebrating the Discovery without Celebrating the Spanish Inquisition.Well it is for me and if you don't understand you're just ignorant as I believe I could not hypothesize any clearer.

Some quote from the references of that article are in question.Not to mention the Blogger himself as a product of the manipulation of guilt.

Thus, the crime of genocide began with our very own Christopher Columbus. He completely exterminated an entire race of 8,000,000 people-- And that's only counting one of the cultures he decimated. "Haiti under the Spanish is one of the primary instances of genocide in all human history." -- James W. Loewen

Only 8,000,000? Christopher Columbus killed 8 million people,ok...

"What we committed in the Indies stands out among the most unpardonable offenses ever committed against God and mankind, and this trade [in Indian slaves] as one of the most unjust, evil, and cruel among them." -- Bartolomé de las Casas

Bartolome's motives are in question.
Bartolome de las Casas: father of liberation theology

Christopher Columbus: Hero, Villain, Human Being Extraordinaire
SOURCE: Encyclopedia Brittanica, 1968 Ed.

From antiquity, hunter/gatherers probably did not practice slavery (another mouth to feed).  Slavery began when they became more pastoral and agricultural.  There was a marked increase in slavery when they went from subsistence to a market economy, and when they began forming cities.
Sources of slaves were capture, force, punishment, birth, sale of  persons in debt,  awards or for chieftains
Slavery was a universal institution in the world, lacking opposition until the mid-16th and early 17th century.   St. Thomas Aquinas considered it a “product of original sin”.  The Catholic Church and other Churches, including the Eastern Church and the Reformation Churches, did not completely disapprove, but to sought to mitigate its excesses.
Slavery already existed in the Americas, especially in Central America, at the time of Columbus’ arrival.  (See Cortez’s description of what he found in the Mexico City of the Incas).
The “West Indies”, including the Greater and Lesser Antilles - the islands of the Caribbean Sea and discovered by Columbus, had been settled  about 2 Million BC by primitive Indians, hunter/gatherers from Central and South America.  Initially they were the Ciboney.
A second group, the Arawaks, came from Venezuela and seized many islands during the 1st century AD, pushing the Ciboney back to the hinterlands.  Some of the Arawak tribes in the Guianas practiced cannibalism.  The Arawaks were the natives “discovered” by Columbus.
Between 1000-1500 AD, the Carib tribes from the Guianas and Venezuela seized some islands from the Arawaks.
The Arawaks were by that time a peaceful people, involved in agriculture and pottery, with a relatively elaborate social structure headed by hereditary chieftains.
The Carib  had a less elaborate social structure.  Their lives centered about warfare, including cannibalism.  When they conquered the lesser Antilles, they killed the Arawak men, married their women, and adopted the Arawak language.
Columbus found on his second voyage that the Arawaks had killed the men whom he had left there on his first voyage (they probably had it coming).  He took about 500 natives back as slaves, partly to “Christianize” them and probably mainly to justify the expenses of his voyages in view of a relative paucity of gold found.
Columbus explored all the West Indies, successfully colonizing only the parts controlled by the Ciboney and the Arawaks (easier than the Caribs).  The Spaniards who followed impressed the Indians for work - until 1550, when the system of forced labor was ended by the Spanish Crown, partly in response to the long-standing opposition of Catholic missionaries working in  the New World.  In fact, Columbus himself was sent back to Spain under arrest and in chains during his third voyage because of his poor administration of the colonies and because of reported brutalities performed in his efforts to maintain order.  (“A good Admiral, but a bad Governor”).
The Spaniards brought the first Negro slaves there in the 16th century - not many,  because the mines became exhausted, and because they went into cattle ranching, which required less labor.  The main influx of Negro slaves occurred in the 18th century by the action of the French.  Meanwhile, Sir John Hawkins had made slaving voyages in the 1560’s.
The Ciboney gradually died out.  The Arawaks declined in numbers and assimilated with the Europeans.  The Carib lasted longer; but they also declined and assimilated more with the Negroes.
Sugar, rum and slaves led to much conflict among the major powers (Dutch, British, French, Spanish).


Anonymous Observer

Bavafa Jaan

by Anonymous Observer on

I agree with you on the article.  It's true about Columbus.  


AO Jaa:

by Bavafa on

very true about your comment but also about the the article itself


Anonymous Observer

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by Anonymous Observer on

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