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On October 12, 1492, an Italian explorer at the service of Spain discovered the American continent. The feat that Christopher Columbus achieved was monumental and the legacy even more so. Up until 1971, when the holiday’s observance was changed to the second Monday of October in the United States, the celebration of the New World’s discovery was consistent throughout most of the Western Hemisphere. Enemies and other haters of Christianity, Western Civilization, republican governance, and free societies have made it a mission since the late 1980s to character assassinate the great Genovese navigator. Why, whom, and for what?
Titled “Admiral of the Ocean Sea” by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain, the Catholic Monarchs of Aragon, Castile, and Leon, Columbus spoke Castilian, Latin, and Portuguese in addition to his native dialect of Ligurian (from the then Republic of Genoa). Largely a self-taught man, the seminal explorer mastered the studies of geography, astronomy, and history. A literal New World began to form when Columbus reached an island he called “San Salvador” (“Holy Savior”).
If Christopher Columbus were alive today and if he could find an impartial, autonomous court in which to sue the evildoers that have defamed and libeled him and his legacy, undoubtedly, he would have a most solid case. Much of the war against him has really been intended against the European colonization of the Western Hemisphere in general and the Iberian conquests specifically. The premise that underlies this moral revisionist war is contingent upon a static and selective interpretation of history and facts of the pre-Colombian world.
All history and all civilizations, those existing and those perished, relay a constant flow of paradigm shifts that have manifested themselves by way of tribal wars. The Saami’s, for example, an indigenous people of Northern Europe who can trace their culture back about 6,000 years in a big part of what is now called Scandinavia and Russia where they dominated the area for a period of time, withered away as a governing force as competing tribes took control territorially. This phenomenon has been a repeating factor throughout history. It was precisely the civilization that Christianity and Judeo-Christian values ushered in, with the political concepts of nation states and formulas of popular self-government that came with them, that brought tribal anarchism to an end.
Slavery has been another tool used to muddle the thinking process for purposes of ideological imposition. Here again, as in the previously mentioned cases of some tribes and/or civilizations dominating others, historical facts have been manipulated to present a false picture. Slavery was not invented by white, Christian men. Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia to China, classical Greece and Rome, the kingdoms of Central Africa, the great empires of the Mayans and Aztecs, the Muslim Arabians, the Indian subcontinent, the Ottoman Turk empire all had social and economic systems of slavery that predated the arrival of Columbus and other subsequent European colonizers into the Americas. Indian tribes in North America also had institutions of slavery as part of their tribal warfare reality.
It was white Christian men and women who spearheaded the effort in the Americas to end slavery. Father Bartolomé de las Casas in Hispanic America and British Quakers and Methodists in North America all made their antislavery arguments on Biblical foundations and understandings of Natural Law. For Columbus, there have been many attributions as to the reasons for his voyages. The promotion of Christianity is quite solid. Book of Prophecies (1505), one of his books, draws upon Biblical passages and correlates his experiences in the voyages to the New World within a notion of Christian eschatology. In other words, the promotion of a Judeo-Christian worldview was clearly one of his objectives.
So, who could possibly want Columbus erased and/or dishonored? It should surprise no one. The Neo-Marxist Frankfurt School’s pagan theologians (Horkheimer, Adorno, Benjamin, Fromm, and Marcuse) Critical Theory dogma fused with Antonio Gramsci’s Cultural Hegemony and Georg Lukács’ Reification Theory, all produced the 1980s grievance studies indoctrination university academic campaigns of Critical Post-Colonial Theory, Critical Feminist Theory, Critical Legal Theory, and Critical Race Theory (among others), where Western Civilization, Christianity, the nuclear family, and ensuing political concepts such as the rule of law and a republican form of government were all under attack. The cultural Marxist mission was not to make amends and betterment. It has been to totally dislodge and systemically replace. Columbus was a natural target.
1492 was, without a doubt, a historical game-changer year. The left, mostly atheist (or radical secularist) and wholly socialist has been on this warpath to control the mode of cultural production for over 30 years. The Summer 2020 Marxist revolt in America’s cities reinvigorated their attack on prototypical figures such as Columbus. Therefore, defenders of a free republic, here in the United States and across the Americas, should appreciate the work of the Great Admiral of the Ocean and challenge the dirty war against him.
Julio M Shiling, political scientist, writer, director of Patria de Martí and The Cuban American Voice, lecturer and media commentator. A native of Cuba, he currently lives in the United States. Twitter: @JulioMShiling // Julio es politólogo, escritor, director de Patria de Martí y The Cuban American Voice. Conferenciante y comentarista en los medios. Natural de Cuba, vive actualmente en EE UU.