Tuesday, 11 October 2005

What did Columbus bring to the New World?

Today is Columbus Day in the States -- today their time, that is -- the day the achievement of Christopher Columbus's discovery of the New World is commemorated. Of course, these days his memory is not so much commemorated as eviscerated. As Ed Hudgins notes in his own 'Weighing of the Columbus cargo' in today's Washington Times:
Many critics argue Christopher Columbus gave us a devil's bargain. In October 1492 that Italian explorer, working for Spain, opened America to his fellow Europeans. The result: We got a prosperous New World by impoverishing, enslaving and murdering the natives who were already here.
But this fails to distinguish between two types of exploitation, one over other humans and the other over nature. The former should be expunged from our moral codes and civilized society, the latter is the essence of morality and civilization.
Hudgins comes most unfashionably to praise Columbus rather than to pillory him. Good for him.

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