LONSBERRY: Monday Is Columbus Day

Columbus was arguably the most important human of the modern era.

 The world as we know it – the world that has dramatically improved the human condition – exists because of the door he opened with his journeys of exploration.

 The United States of America – the defining society of global modernity – exists as a direct outgrowth of the discoveries of Christopher Columbus.

 Which is probably why progressives hate him so much. When you loathe a society and its values, you attack its roots, you impeach its heritage, you defame its history. And that is what progressives are doing with the United States. From colleges to Congress, the sidelines of the NFL to the protests of the Antifa.

 America is one of the only societies in history where there is a concerted internal effort to destroy its identity and values. The nation and its history stand as an obstacle to global progressivism, and so it must be torn down. And that can only happen from within.

 So disgust with our history is taught in our classrooms and decreed in our city halls.

 Like the declaration today from Lovely Warren.

 The mayor of Rochester has proclaimed Indigenous Peoples Day.

 That’s Columbus Day to you racists.

 On Monday, arguably the most dysfunctional city in America – childhood poverty + failed school district = more hipster condos – will choose sides in the culture war.

 And the truth will lose.

 Because the truth is that Columbus – with all the flaws to which any of us are subject – opened the door to the modern world. A world in which the situations of almost all peoples are bettered. A world in which global freedom continues to spread from its New World origins.

 Should there be a day honoring Native Americans?


 Should it be positioned as an antagonist to America’s discovery and establishment?

 Absolutely not.

 In the scheduling of a native people’s day on Columbus Day, the great heritage of Native Americans is used as a wedge issue instead of a cause for celebration. It is an exploitation which cheats the immensity and diversity of Native American history in order to benefit the social division that powers the progressive movement.

 Native Americans of both hemispheres were fascinating people whose societies reflected all the complexity, glory and intrigue of humankind anywhere. There were angels and monsters, cultures that succeeded and cultures that failed. Remembering America’s earlier inhabitants is a natural part of the national history – the story of this place.

 Each of us, in all of our circumstances, have tried to carve lives and raise families on the lands that are now the United States – no matter our color, culture, language or era. We are all partners in place, and ought to celebrate that partnership without prejudice – including against the current culture and country.

 So, yes, Congress or city hall should declare a day of celebration of Native America.

 But it should be an embrace, not a repudiation.

 If America is big enough for all, then that includes those who followed in Columbus’s wake.

 He brought European and eventually African and Asian culture and people to the Americas. He introduced the still-dominant Hispanic culture of the Americas. He opened a door to future and freedom for nations which now are home to a billion people.

 Were there dark days along the way?

 Yes, as there have been in all human societies.

 The widespread slavery practiced by Native Americans was replaced by the widespread slavery practiced by the Spaniards, English and Dutch who sailed to American shores. Wars of extermination fought by Native Americans were replaced by wars of extermination fought by Americans and Spaniards. There was torture before, and there was torture after.

 But the path of human progress has been forward and upward, and the Western Hemisphere is a firm foundation for the human family.

 And that is because of a man from Genoa who sailed for the Catholic monarchs of Castile and Aragon.

 His name was Cristoforo Colombo and he discovered America.

 He believed that God led him in his journey.

 I believe the same thing.

 And I believe that efforts to defame the significance of his voyages is an effort to weaken the pride and heritage of all the Americas – but especially the United States of America.

 Monday is Columbus Day.

 No matter what the mayor says.

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 23: A 76-foot statue of explorer Christopher Columbus stands in Columbus circle on August 23, 2017 in New York City. Following the recent violence in Charlottesville, many politicians, activists and citizens are calling for monuments dedicated to Confederate-era and other controversial figures to be taken down. Some New York politicians have included Columbus in this political debate. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

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