On Columbus Day, Remember History Is Complicated

Political News

A monument of Christopher Columbus in Rapallo, Italy (boggy22/Getty Images)

Columbus Day, Indigenous People’s Day, National Coming Out Day — the second Monday in October is just a ridiculous political football now. Most people don’t even get off of work for it anymore, which is fine because, as Kevin Williamson says, Mondays are for working anyway.

There’s a kernel of truth in the anti–Columbus Day crowd’s message. Insofar as they want to fight against simplistic historical narratives, their motive is good. The problem is that they mostly just replace one simplistic historical narrative with another one.

Was Christopher Columbus a righteous superhuman, doing God’s work and civilizing the savages to bring freedom …

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