Columbus Day and the Sanitization of History

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The strife that has engulfed Christopher Columbus’ legacy in recent years has put the concept of an Indigenous People’s Day at the forefront of discussion.

In theory, as we move forward in our lives, we should make every effort to broaden our perspective and to seek out the truth. As we mature, so should our thought process. Such maturation holds true on both an individual and a societal basis. A broad understanding of history enables one to reconcile the past, comprehend the present and reasonably theorize how future events may unfold. As truths are discovered, norms begin to shift. Such forthright thinking is necessary to fully grasp the complexities of historical events and figures.

This is particularly true with respect to the legacy of Christopher Columbus, a polarizing historical figure whose life has been defined by many for his astonishing level of courage and intestinal fortitude. Nevertheless, such impressive traits should never blur the fact that he oversaw a murderous quest for material riches that resulted in the utter demise of a people. Each year, as October 12 comes and goes, a question is raised – what are we celebrating about his life?

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