As I research about the true story of Christopher Columbus, I discover that I have believed a horrendous lie my entire life that I truly would have preferred not to learn. Unfortunately, it is now too late and my life has been forever changed.
When one thinks about Christopher Columbus or the famous Columbus’ Day, there are a few pleasant facts we run across. First of all, we “celebrate” Columbus’ Day the second Monday of the month of October. As kids, it is always exciting to have a day off from school and since it is a federal holiday, kids get to stay home. For some adults, it also means a day off from work to take time and celebrate this role-model that discovered America. Columbus’ Day was invented in the United States by the Knights of Columbus. This is a Catholic fraternal service organization. In the 1930s, this fraternal organization was looking for a Catholic hero that kids could look up to and admire. In 1934, after many days on behalf of the Knights of Columbus lobbying, congress and President Franklin Roosevelt signed Columbus Day into a law and made it a federal holiday to honor what everyone thought was a courageous explorer.
Unfortunately, this is not quite the accurate story. According to the information gathered in my search for the truth, Christopher Columbus was not the first European who discovered America. It is said that the Viking, Leif Ericson could have possibly founded a Norse Village on Newfoundland about 500 years earlier. In addition, the Native Americans discovered North America approximately 14,000 years before Columbus was even born! It is also suggested, through DNA evidence that Polynesian adventurers sailed across the Pacific Ocean and settled in South America long before the Vikings.
If you are aware of this federal holiday you are familiar with the following traditional phrase: “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.” This is typically used when...