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My Stand Against the Campus Mob Over Columbus Day

What makes a culture? The answer is similarities. A culture forms organically and a people become socially cohesive when they have tangible things in common. This can range from the grand, like a shared religion, sense of place, or language, to the more concrete, like music, food, and clothing. It can also include perceptions of the past, such as holidays, stories, and a reverence for certain figures.

One of these larger-than-life figures here in America is Christopher Columbus. The 15th-century voyager was a product of the Age of Exploration, when European sailors crossed the oceans in search of trade routes. Columbus was the first of these explorers to reach the outer shores of North America, landing in the Bahamas on October 12, 1492.

Saying Columbus discovered America is a misnomer. He was preceded by the Viking Leif Erikson almost four centuries prior, and there were of course millions of people already living on the two continents. But Columbus’ voyage and landing signified the introduction of the Western tradition to the Americas. The year 1492 acted as a fulcrum, a permanent turning point in the relations of the world. It is certainly not the start of history in America, but it is the start of Western history in America and everything that has been birthed from it since.

Before becoming a federal holiday in the United States in 1937, Columbus Day was celebrated widely and passionately. It was celebrated by those who viewed Western exploration as a good thing, a necessary thing that led to the creation of the United States and the world we know today. But in recent decades it has come under fire from those who perhaps don’t view the introduction of the Western tradition to the Americas as a positive.

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These attacks have come from two groups: the progressive left and the descendants of Native Americans. To them, Columbus is a racist, a rapist, and a genocidal slave master; the evils of imperialism made flesh. The modern cultural left, influenced by the legacy of the Frankfurt School, sees reverence for the figures of Western history as one more brick to be removed in a systematic dismantling. Those of indigenous heritage have a more legitimate case. Native Americans aren’t part of the historic American nation. Not granted citizenship until 1924, natives were before that viewed as separate peoples with wholly distinct cultures. They have no reason to love Christopher Columbus, which has given them common cause with the left.

Native American & Indigenous Alliance at GMU

I recently witnessed one of these alliances of convenience at George Mason University where I attend school. In the fall of 2015, my sophomore year, a resolution began circulating through student government. It was a resolution to urge the University to reconstitute Columbus Day as Indigenous Peoples’ Day, or, to quote a promotional poster, “abolish Columbus Day.” It was called Resolution 13.

After passing the SG Diversity Committee with 11 votes in favor and 1 abstention, Resolution 13 was scheduled to arrive on the senate floor in December during the last meeting of the semester. The resolution was the brainchild of the GMU Native American and Indigenous Alliance, in partnership with the Black Student Alliance, the Mason DREAMers, GMU Student Power, and a dozen other clubs that combine to form the coalition of the aggrieved. They arrived at the meeting with upwards of 50 students and a petition with over 450 signatures.

Per senate rules, every meeting there is an open forum where any student can speak. I attended the meeting to push back against the insurgent, and quickly dominant, narrative. Less than four other likeminded students attended, leaving us outnumbered 10 to one.

The room was tense, angry, and nervous. It was packed, shoulder to shoulder, as person after person stood and spoke passionately (some scathingly). They blamed Columbus for the high rate of suicide in the Native American community, made connections between the explorer and police brutality that affects the black community, and connected Resolution 13 to another resolution previously passed by the senate in support of the DREAM Act.

When it was my turn, I focused on the proper way to view and contextualize history and historical figures. I emphasized the difference between being great and being good: greatness signifies impact, a person or action that effectively altered history, while good is a moral judgement. I agreed with most of my audience that Columbus was an evil man, but I argued that he was also a great man who permanently changed history and is in some ways responsible for the eventual colonization of the United States, which the great majority of Americans think was a good thing. I said there was much to celebrate about the indigenous inhabitants, but if morality was being consistently applied to history, then the different tribes of the Americas are responsible for their own massacres of innocents, their own forms of slavery, and human sacrifice on a near-industrial scale. You could either have Columbus Day and Indigenous Peoples’ Day or accept a sick kind of cultural iconoclasm and reject both. I only talked for a few minutes before my knees started to shake. It’s difficult to speak while looking out at a sea of faces staring back at you with disgust, hate, and bile.

The public session closed and the senators began to speak. The debate fell between the bill’s sponsors and Senator Caleb Kitchen, a friend of the highest quality. Beyond defending the legacy of Christopher Columbus and calling the resolution “culturally exclusive,” he poked legal holes in the resolution. These ranged from poor word choice and spelling errors to the fact that a public university like George Mason had no authority to disavow Columbus Day, which was (and is) a state-sanctioned holiday.

After three exhaustive hours, the senate moved to vote. The result floored the room: Resolution 13 was tabled until the next meeting so deliberation could continue and the errors Senator Kitchen pointed out could be corrected. As it was the last meeting of the semester, the senate would not convene again for two months.

The room went berserk. There was a mass exodus as people angrily marched out and began demonstrating and chanting. One Resolution 13 cosponsor left the room sobbing. Another cosponsor, a woman of color, was in a fury. “God damn white people!” I heard her scream from the hallway at the top of her lungs. Her racial tirade continued out of earshot. “I fucking hate white people! I want to shoot this bitch up!” a friend later recalled her saying. He alerted the university and spent months lobbying them to remove her from the senate. The administration demurred, saying it had investigated the situation and there was no threat. She kept her senate seat without censure. I couldn’t help but think that if the ethnic identity of the speaker and the group she was castigating had been reversed, the University would have gone a lot further than my friend requested.

When the senate reconvened in January, the storm had passed. I returned to speak out against the resolution once again, although this time I was one of only 10 people in the gallery. With less contention, the senate voted 25 in favor of Resolution 13, three against (including Senator Kitchen), and one abstaining. The resolution to abolish Columbus Day and rename it Indigenous Peoples’ Day was recommended to the university administration, where it died a quiet death. It hasn’t been resurrected since. The end of that spring semester saw Kitchen overwhelmingly elected speaker of the student senate. Sometimes bravery has its rewards.

In a student government that has in the past decade witnessed a scandal over financial fraud and serial sexual harassment followed by a systematic coverup [1], Resolution 13 and that tense meeting in December will live on as the most rancorous in memory. And it is only in memory that it will survive: the binder containing the meeting’s minutes went missing from student government records, presumed stolen by persons unknown.

The goal of Resolution 13 was ultimately not inclusion; it was conquest, using the word “diversity” as a Trojan Horse to abolish traditional Western observances and continue the erosion of cultural solidarity in the United States. At what point does diversity become toxic to the dominant culture? When it seeks to subvert it.

Happy Columbus Day.

Hunter DeRensis is an editorial assistant at The American Conservative and a student at George Mason University. Follow him on Twitter @HunterDeRensis.

71 Comments (Open | Close)

71 Comments To "My Stand Against the Campus Mob Over Columbus Day"

#1 Comment By Scorched Earth On October 9, 2018 @ 12:38 pm

If the Americas are going to have a Christopher Columbus Day, then the Germans should also have an Adolf Hitler day. After all, Hitler did manage to pull the German economy out of its funk in the 1930s; and the world famous Autobahn was his brainchild. But instead he is (rightly) remembered for his atrocities.

If anyone did today what Columbus did back then, I am confident he would be on trial at The Hague International Court for crimes against humanity.

By the way: he really didn’t discover anything. The islands he landed on were already well populated by the Taino and Carib First Nations who were already there for centuries. We just don’t know the name of the leaders who led their expectations from South America into the Caribbean. Columbus, as you’ve rightly pointed out, wasn’t even the first European. Even as a conservative, I see no reason to celebrate this man.

#2 Comment By Scorched Earth On October 9, 2018 @ 12:49 pm

Addendum to my previous comment:

If a First Nations chief along with some of his tribe, managed to sail the Atlantic and landed on the shores of Western Europe 500 years ago, would we give credence to his claim of discovering Europe? We would either role our eyes in disdain or laugh with scorn.

So why is it any different with Christopher Columbus?

#3 Comment By FL Transplant On October 9, 2018 @ 1:51 pm

By today’s standard’s–and by that I mean generally accepted standards of morality and behavior, across the spectrum of political and religious beliefs-Columbus was a brutal and evil person. There can be no dispute about that; the historical record fully describes his actions. He came from the same culture as that of Pizarro and Cortes. These were not nice people.

We should be very happy that the cultural and political heritage of the USA is largely French and English, and not Spanish.

#4 Comment By mrscracker On October 9, 2018 @ 2:30 pm

JonF,
Hello! I hope this finds you doing well?

Thank you for your comments. I’ve read a little about Russia & watched a dvd documentary or two but I’ll have to read up more on what you shared.
I remember watching an episode of the PBS “finding Your Roots” series. The guest was Martha Stewart & the host seemed a bit disappointed that she didn’t seem terribly shook up to learn she was part Tatar.Maybe being Polish she was already knowledgeable about that part of history.

I read about the estimated number of Europeans captured by the Barbary pirates from an Ohio State Univ. link provided in a BBC article a few years back:

When Europeans Were Slaves: Research Suggests White Slavery Was Much More Common Than Previously Believed

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A new study suggests that a million or more European Christians were enslaved by Muslims in North Africa between 1530 and 1780 – a far greater number than had ever been estimated before.
In a new book, Robert Davis, professor of history at Ohio State University, developed a unique methodology to calculate the number of white Christians who were enslaved along Africa’s Barbary Coast, arriving at much higher slave population estimates than any previous studies had found.

Most other accounts of slavery along the Barbary coast didn’t try to estimate the number of slaves, or only looked at the number of slaves in particular cities, Davis said. Most previously estimated slave counts have thus tended to be in the thousands, or at most in the tens of thousands. Davis, by contrast, has calculated that between 1 million and 1.25 million European Christians were captured and forced to work in North Africa from the 16th to 18th centuries.

Davis’s new estimates appear in the book Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters: White Slavery in the Mediterranean, the Barbary Coast, and Italy, 1500-1800 (Palgrave Macmillan)…
Davis said it is useful to compare this Mediterranean slavery to the Atlantic slave trade that brought black Africans to the Americas. Over the course of four centuries, the Atlantic slave trade was much larger – about 10 to 12 million black Africans were brought to the Americas. But from 1500 to 1650, when trans-Atlantic slaving was still in its infancy, more white Christian slaves were probably taken to Barbary than black African slaves to the Americas, according to Davis.”

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#5 Comment By EliteCommInc. On October 9, 2018 @ 3:14 pm

Just a tad bit challenge here.

1. The native american experience in the north America is not the same thing as that below California and Texas. That conquest was more gradual and in many ways far more humane. And it included this rarely mentioned reality —

The Native Americans fought to preserve their identities. The one clear exception on the East Coast were the Cherokee’s who embraced all aspects of western or US citizenship and sociology, right down to their hair styles and clothes. And when i say fought, I do not mean merely violent fights. but those involving negotiated settlements of territory designed to preserve national indemnities — unique from each other and that of the US. The segregation here was by mutual agreement.

It would be a contrast to great from what happened below Texas and California, New mexico —
those histories cannot be compared as they are above — This is of course the post modern phenomenological twist to identity — the antifa, deconstructionist intersectionalization being applied with carefree abandon — and the results are just falsehoods leading to very messy advocacy and unworkable /unfair policy admonitions.

2. Very close to the same blandness of intersectional advocacy has been the long tried, and false slavery every blankets that people throw out — so as to alleviate or expiate guilt over slavery’s repercussions the matter in the US or among western societies. It’s the “they did it too” as if said wrong is ok because it was committed elsewhere. We know that on the continent of Africa the practice of slavery included some manner of incorporation or an opportunity of assimilation fully into society. Further the practice of slavery did not exclude members of the society who were skilled providers of some service. But i am going to eschew that and rankle with the one of the most insidious games played on the matter. What makes the issue so damaging in the Us is that it hinged on a practice that the colonials seemed to have embraced with full vigor — hypocrisy. The establishment of a nation encased in rhetoric about freedom and men being created equally (sameness before the divine or according to nature — with rights upon conception as human beings) and then in every manner possible violating the very foundation of the founding and doing so in every way. Even to go so far as to enjoin Jesus Christ and the Almighty God in the press. And that hypocrisy raises its head every time anyone seeks to invoke slavery in other parts of the globe, time and space to justify it here. And to do so without so much as a tinge on conscience (– in my view). It’s Pres Jefferson writing a declaration of independence to justify a war for liberty, vowing to set free his own slaves — and then never doing so. It’s a country that actually enjoins slavery as part of its constitution that fought a war over individual human liberty. It’s not slavery (alone) it’s the hypocrisy. And it’s the hypocrisy over something as mundane and inconsequential as skin color to humaness as a creations of the divine and then proceeding to engage all manner of systems to justify it via, intelligence, morality and place of birth.

And that persistent refusal to embrace the hypocrisy and its consequences is largely why we are where we are — regarding color. And it is a shame.

#6 Comment By EliteCommInc. On October 9, 2018 @ 3:19 pm

And unlike native americans, free blacks, former slaves and otherwise did everything they could to include themselves as citizens of this country and were repeatedly denied and worse . . .

To be clear white women were no less a part of that denial past or present.

#7 Comment By Mark VA On October 9, 2018 @ 4:18 pm

“But Columbus’ voyage and landing signified the introduction of the Western tradition to the America.”

Our university students should be taught the history of the concept “Western Civilization”, so that anachronisms such as the one above are avoided;

In a nutshell, this concept traces back to the French philosophes and their sympathizers, and was popularized during the Western European (primarily British, French, and German) empire building during the 19th century. American scholars got entangled in it at around the same time, partly thru the efforts of the European empire builders, and partly because they were willing;

I recommend three books to put “Western Civilization” in its proper context:

Norman Davies, in his “Introduction” to “Europe”, sketches its ideological and propaganda aspects, and lists a dozen variants vying for the title;

Larry Wolff, in his “Inventing Eastern Europe”, explores the minds most responsible for the invention of this ideology. The book is not about Eastern Europe;

Peter Frankopan, in his “The Silk Roads”, puts this history in its proper place on the global stage;

The point is this: not all critics of “Western Civilization” are left wing ideologues, or participants in grievance politics. Some are serious scholars – I listed three above. I hope the current and future generation of American students will realize that foreign entanglements are not only military or economic. The most serious ones are ideological.

#8 Comment By mrscracker On October 9, 2018 @ 4:52 pm

JonF says:

“…huge numbers of Russians, Poles etc. were taken into slavery by the Tatars and their allies.”

********************
Goodness. I looked that up & there were some very gruesome & sad accounts available online. It looks like the Tatars were supplying huge numbers of slaves to the Ottoman Empire during that period.

#9 Comment By Rand M Sutor On October 9, 2018 @ 5:31 pm

Okay, the Vikings were here before Chris, so what – big deal. It was Christopher Columbus’s discovery that opened up the Americas to Europe. Put it to rest! What’s worth while here to argue about – Nothing!

#10 Comment By Nicole Boyers On October 9, 2018 @ 5:47 pm

I’m surprised a racist screaming “I hate white people” is allowed to stay in the Senate.

People are disgusted by slavery today. Yet “back in the day” slavery was common since Biblical times. And they weren’t always “rounded up”, but rather sold into slavery by their own people, such as it was in Africa.

I applaud college students free thinking and debate. But this entitled, safe space, freedom from all obstacles and anything that might offend them, scares me. We could lose our grit as the best damn country in the world….simply because this young adult generation doesn’t think we are, and doesn’t want to work towards maintaining our greatness.

#11 Comment By Ivo Olavo Castro da Silva On October 9, 2018 @ 9:25 pm

White conquerors were not angels. But Native American tribes (from Canada to Patagonia) had one ultimate common goal: the utter destruction of their enemy tribes. Warfare was endless. Today’s revisionists rage is selective justice. What they really want is to push their leftist agenda. There is not any doubt that Western Civilization eventually brought prosperity and justice for all. Yes, ALL.

#12 Comment By Mark Krvavica On October 9, 2018 @ 9:29 pm

I see Columbus Day as a celebration of American Freedom and Western Civilization, U.S. leftists are the real villains and I will remember this on November 6.

#13 Comment By cka2nd On October 9, 2018 @ 11:04 pm

Many excellent points, Hector.

#14 Comment By jasmin On October 10, 2018 @ 12:48 am

When the astronauts visit the space station they are an extension of the great civilization that Columbus brought to the New World. And in this regard, these modern-day adventurers are backed up by a vast network of technology while Columbus set out on his own with crews of men he had to manage. Columbus added much knowledge to navigation and charted the winds and the currents while mapping out areas newly discovered. And he did not arrive in paradise and destroy it. The inhabitants were engaged in continuous tribal warfare with the defeated being cooked and eaten or ritually sacrificed. Columbus’ voyages opened up a new world into which the greatness of Western culture and achievement was eventually introduced, a culture that advanced medicine, science, and technology, and introduced the rich Western Canon The Western mind is a superior one and if ever it is wiped out the world will be as it was before Columbus arrived– a world of disease and savagery. Did you ever ask yourself why every person migrates to Western countries?

#15 Comment By Mark VA On October 10, 2018 @ 4:20 pm

Jasmin:

Reduction of data to a few favorite themes, elimination of contrary material, selective picking from the historical record to form a bogus “arrow of history”, all wrapped up in enthusiastic language (“The Western mind is a superior one…”) are hallmarks of propaganda (see Norman Davies, “Europe”, pp. 25-26″);

It would be easy to provide a list that contradicts every point you’ve made, starting with Zyklon-B and mustard gases, reaching back thru European Colonies, to the Thirty Years’ War – all examples of Western European slaughter, exploitation, and religious intolerance;

The point is not to get Americans entangled in this Western European ideology in the first place – it is their problem. We can certainly study and appreciate the Greeks and the Romans, without buying into someone else’s narcissism (many non-Western people do). Let’s stand on our own two feet;

Speaking of ISS, it always was, and remains an international endeavor:

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#16 Comment By cka2nd On October 10, 2018 @ 4:40 pm

Ivo Olavo Castro da Silva says: “White conquerors were not angels. But Native American tribes (from Canada to Patagonia) had one ultimate common goal: the utter destruction of their enemy tribes. Warfare was endless.”

I dispute this, first on the basis of generalizing that tens or perhaps hundreds of millions of people comprising thousands of societies had the same goal, and that that goal was so universal, total and final as “the utter destruction of their enemy tribes.” I do not doubt that this goal was sometimes sought, or that many tribes, confederations, city-states, states or empires at one time or another sought that end, but wars were also fought for conquest and for land, to subjugate or drive outs one’s enemies, and not just “the utter destruction,” which implies the complete slaughter, of said enemies. I don’t doubt that it happened on occasion, as it did among the many thousands of societies of the Eastern Hemisphere, but I sincerely doubt that it was “the ultimate common goal” of all societies of the Western Hemisphere at all times, which your statement implies. And as for warfare being “endless,” I don’t doubt that raiding was close to endless among tribes and between nomadic and settled peoples, or that there were longs periods of warfare between competing cities and states, but there were also periods when one polity had established its control in areas small and large, and established relative levels of peace and peaceful development and even some degree of general prosperity, sometimes only within their territory, but also sometimes between them and their neighbors. Again, as seen in the great Eurasian land mass and Africa.

Ivo Olavo Castro da Silva says: “Today’s revisionists rage is selective justice. What they really want is to push their leftist agenda. There is not any doubt that Western Civilization eventually brought prosperity and justice for all. Yes, ALL.”

Well, I refer you to the erudite comment from Mark VA about the entire concept of Western Civilization, but I certainly don’t doubt that, in the long term, the developments in economics, science, medicine, public health and, yes, philosophy that arose from the nations of Europe and Christendom have had an overall positive effect on the rest of the world. But, I wouldn’t be surprised if the same could be said of the impact of Chinese Civilization, Indian Civilization and even, perhaps, the Mongol conquests in fostering long-term connections and developments that benefited more than they harmed. The trick is both to determine the long-term effects, good and bad, and weigh them against both the short and long-term negative consequences. Which is why I take the claims of my pagan friends against Christianity with a grain of salt, AND vice versa.

#17 Comment By cka2nd On October 10, 2018 @ 4:49 pm

jasmin says: “Did you ever ask yourself why every person migrates to Western countries?”

Well, in recent decades its because Western bankers and financiers have gone into their countries and basically strip mined them of agriculture and industry, usually by introducing subsidized goods from their own countries, resulting in the loss of jobs and employment opportunities. This leads to the migration of millions of educated workers to the western countries, where they have the salutary effect, from the perspectives of the bankers and financiers, of increasing the vast army of the unemployed, thus driving down wages and benefits of the native laboring classes. See Eastern Europe and Mexico.

Or, the migration is caused by wars conducted by or sponsored by the western countries in question. See Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Libya and, thanks to the War on Drugs, Mexico and several of the countries of Central America.

Of course, the ultimate answer to throw in the face of anyone droning on and on about the superiority of “Western Civilization” is five little words: World Wars One and Two.

#18 Comment By EliteCommInc. On October 10, 2018 @ 9:27 pm

“The Western mind is a superior one and if ever it is wiped out the world will be as it was before Columbus arrived – a world of disease and savagery. Did you ever ask yourself why every person migrates to Western countries?”

Ohh brother . . . no group of people invited more destructive diseases than Europeans and did so repeatedly the world over. Here is the IQ of westrern civilization tale. western civilization built upon what others had produced. Furtherm ore, while western and let;s not dance here, we are talking about whites — want to lay claim to some enormity of intelligence. The truth is very few westerners were what one might consider of superior intelligence.

The history of so called savaergy whole sale among everyone else — is knee jerk, “left brain” reaction to the data that with civilization of came some some very brutal and inhuman practices. And what’s more upending all of the silliness about superioer morality or intelliegence is this simple fact.

Let’s pretend for a moment that the dubious claims here about whites are true. Superior intelligence, and morality. Let’s, for fun grant that out.

If accurate, then one expects savagery and immorality and lack of intelligence among the so called savages — that’s by their nature.

Your argument fails in this — that the brutality, savagery, immorality of the so called civilized was no more than the brutes they claim to civilize. It is a myth that before western man the world existed without more’s, rules, or civilization. A man or women who doesn’t know better is not expected to act better. However, the man or woman imbued with knowledge, sophistication, Christianity, etc., etc. should know better than to enlist the tragedies that westerners visited on their unsuspecting less sophisticated people.

Its true in the bowels of Africa where civilizations shunted in the jungles had legal codes and practices every bit as complex – including forms of democracy King Leopold’s, Ghost, and Africa.

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Now it is not entirely the fault of the commenters, those who control the means, metrhod and content of communication will certainly control the messages. but what many of you have yet to figure is why the tensions against western thought now are front and center. It’;s really very simple, western civilization has been forced to lose its grip on controlling the message. Many of seem utterly devoid of any inkling what the international awakening resulted from. That nations once occupied began to examine what they were not told and were told about themselves against the truth — and the truth was very simple and clear — the western power structures had lied, mislead, manufactured, manipulated, the truth — about who the people they occupied were. having failed to deliver on their promise of fair treatment — assimilation. members of the greater – they simply had enough. It 2018 and most of you here think it’s 1950, 1960, 1970, 1980 . . . and the advent of internet has overhauled who controls knowledge — one can certainly challenge the polity of a lot of what’s going on — but if you don’t get the why — especially this nonsense about a superior west — based on my toilet bowl — you have got to be kidding. Indoor plumbing is was a western innovation, not an invention. So it that a bunch of kids are learning that the west, their very own have engaged in lots of shady immoral, and ultimately lousy practices for maintaining civil society — instead of acknowledging to what extent that might be accurate, most of you are picking up the mantel of the very problem and proclaiming — but but . . .we are superior.

ohh goodness gracious. It is as you think that others are ignorant of Europe’s continuous state of warfare, that not only visited upon themselves – but on a global scale. And the utter duplicitous manner in which they used others in their messes. The first casualties for the of WWI were not whites, they were Indians, and Africans thrown headlong and ahead of whites in the fight. Not by the thousands, but by the hundreds of thousands. The french, The brits, the germans, the italians, and other Europeans spent several thousand years killing and eating themselves long before they had at it with each other or did so simultaneously.

Again the reason that guilt about slavery ranks to injuriously against western society is based on the philosophies about the value of humanity and then proceed to ensure what you mean — certain humans. Those contradictions are what have our backs against the wall. It is not that the nature of western-man is better by default of DNA which is the suggestion here, but that westerners justify their inhumanity on the fact that they we make a better cleaner toilet.

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History is a harsh mistress, just when you think you have it down — she upends the certainty.

And no the arguments about HIV resulting from monkey eating Africans and cavorting with Europeans doesn’t make any sense.

I used to think like many here — but I started to read beyond the text books. Even the contend that somehow outside of the west humans were more savage and warlike is a dubious suggestion. Right alongside the prevalence of cannibalism among the thousands of African civilizations —

#19 Comment By EliteCommInc. On October 10, 2018 @ 9:28 pm

Wait — let me guess,

you think Tarzan was a real white guy.

#20 Comment By Mark VA On October 12, 2018 @ 4:36 pm

EliteCommInc:

I believe it’s good that objectivity is beginning to be applied to this ideology (Western Civilization);

My thoughts are these:

Those of us who see it for what it is, should avoid the temptation to just condemn it wholesale. Western Europeans (by this, I mean primarily the English, the French and the Germans, with a Scandinavian and Mediterranean periphery) did produce world class works of art, music, and literature, and did advance the sciences to new heights;

What we should do, in my view, is to remind Western Civilization enthusiasts that this concept is of recent vintage, was conceived with mendacious thoughts, and that no one can claim a permanent place at the head of the global table – it is vanity to insist otherwise. Especially after the slaughter (WWI and WWII) their recent ancestors produced;

Second, there is a crude denunciation of Western Civilization from the political Left – it misses the mark by stooping to the level of propaganda. It’s no better than the propaganda of Western Civilization enthusiasts. To be effective, we must complete the record with incontrovertible facts, which the enthusiasts on both sides avoid;

Third, the false historical arrow of “from Plato to NATO” should be debunked. The English, the French, and the Germans are not the sole philosophical descendants of the Greeks and the Romans (who would be very surprised to learn that these are their “legitimate children”). No one can lay an exclusive claim to those histories, we all learn from them as we wish;

Fourth, we should remind those who easily forget, that the Greeks and the Romans were just two civilizations among many. China, Egypt, Persia, Inca, Maya, and India readily come to mind;

Basically, let their hot air out, but do it with charity and élan.

#21 Comment By HAC On October 14, 2018 @ 11:42 am

It can possibly set a nasty example since Columbus was jailed by Spain’s Queen Isabella for abusing indigenous Americans. Leif Erikson supposedly did not abuse indigenous people, and discovered America 500 years before Columbus, so his statue should replace Columbus statues. This seems to be a Justice Dept. issue since the federal government still seems to promote somehow abuse of indigenous Americans with USA taxpayer money. It is possible that the Knights Templar and others were in America before Leif, but that has not been proven I do not think, so far.