…isn’t that America over there?
A few days out of port, and probably rum, the sailors on Columbus’ ships were itchy for land-fall! Mutiny was in the making!
Luckily, on October 12, 1492, Chris and his motley crew of Italian and Spanish sailors spotted land.
The Bahamas to be exact.
And why not, the Bahamas are great!
Atlantis Resort, cheap designer shoes, cologne.
Oops! It wasn’t like that then.
Nevertheless, Christopher Columbus “discovered” America, set the European conquest of 2 continents in motion and planted the seed for most of the ills of the Western World.
According to some.
But really, Chris was just a simple sailor, scientist, and a deeply religious guy.
He wanted to prove his theory that the world was round and not flat, loved the seas, and wanted to spread his religion all over the world. He was pretty slick too; he appealed the the Extremely Catholic Isabella of Spain, and the girl hawked her bling to finance Columbus’ exploration. She was more interested in conversion of the natives and a trade route to China than that “earth is an orb” stuff. But, she ponied UP the cash anyway.
Chris was a missionary – of sorts – I mean, he had guns, disease, and a low opinion of the natives, but he did want to convert them all.
That didn’t happen.
Yesterday was the offical holiday, but today is the anniversary of his “discovery”.
We all know he wasn’t really the first. There was Eric the Red and a few others, and some claim that peoples from the Middle East came West long before Chris did. Some even say the Apostle Paul was there…but I doubt that.
I’m quite sure the people in the Americas at the time of Chris’ arrival came from somewhere else. Ignoring the Bering Sea Myth, I’m going with the Kon Tiki theory that they came here on small boats from the “Orient”.
And speaking of polilically incorrect, there are people out there who don’t think we should honor Columbus at all.
His log tells us that his opinion of the Bahamian and other Western people was low.
“They do not bear arms, and do not know them, for I showed them a sword, they took it by the edge and cut themselves out of ignorance…. They would make fine servants…. With 50 men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.”
In 1495, during the Second Voyage, Indians were transported to Spain as slaves, many dying en route. “Let us in the name of the Holy Trinity, go on sending all the slaves that can be sold.”
OK, so he was a tad “misguided”.
But, think about it. Without Chris, what else might we be without?
Where would Ohio State be?
There would be no tomatoes in Italian cooking.
We’d have no corn, HFCS, and hundreds of food plants indigenous to the Americas that helped improve European Cooking. Yes, British cooking used to be worse than it is today!! Shocking and nearly impossible to believe, but true.
No Cinco de Mayo!
So, to all the protesters out there…get over it…have a happy Columbus Day anyway!