Let’s Abolish Columbus Day
Everyday children are taught that Christopher Columbus is a hero and that he discovered America, but they aren’t taught about what he did to Native Americans while discovering America and the real truth about whom he was and what he did. Although Columbus encouraged European exploration of the “New World”, he is not the hero that everyone believes him to be. He had very little knowledge of where he was and Native Americans were badly mistreated under his command. It is evident that Columbus encouraged European exploration, but it is also evident that he did not in fact know where he was and that he had landed on an unknown part of the world. When Columbus conquered land for the Spanish and brought back goods, it inspired other nations to send out explorers such as, Cabot, an English explorer who sailed to the coast of Canada, Pizarro, a Spanish explorer who conquered land among the Pacific coast of South America, and Vespucci, an explorer for both Spain and Portugal who was the first to realize that this land across the ocean was a New World not Asia. Columbus is responsible for the way the Americas are today and if he had not sailed across the Atlantic Ocean, the world might be completely different. When Columbus first sailed across the Atlantic Ocean in 1492, he thought that he had landed on Asia and three voyages later, he still thought that the island of Cuba was a part of Asia, South America was only an island, and that the coast of Central America was near the Ganges River. As indicated in Document 5, the painting shows Columbus landing on America as a celebration even though he thought he was in Asia. Also, the Columbus Doors shows that the whole world acknowledges Columbus’ accomplishment but he wasn’t the one that declared that this land that he sailed to was in fact a “New World”. In 12 years of exploring the Americas, he never once realized that it was not Asia. Columbus thought he had made it to Asia, and called this area...
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