Today many Americans will be celebrating Columbus Day, despite the leftist backlash to Christopher Columbus and his obvious racism. (Insert massive eye-roll here.)
Since most leftists are incapable – or uninterested – to judge a person’s actions in the time in which they lived (see also: the denigration of Thomas Jefferson) I decided I woild celebrate Christopher Columbus’ most noted achievement.
The little fleet left on August 3, 1492. The admiral’s navigational genius showed itself immediately, for they sailed southward to the Canary Islands, off the northwest African mainland, rather than sailing due west to the islands of the Azores. The westerlies prevailing in the Azores had defeated previous attempts to sail to the west, but in the Canaries the three ships could pick up the northeast trade winds; supposedly, they could trust to the westerlies for their return. After nearly a month in the Canaries the ships set out from San Sebastián de la Gomera on September 6.
On several occasions in September and early October, sailors spotted floating vegetation and various types of birds—all taken as signs that land was nearby. But by October 10 the crew had begun to lose patience, complaining that with their failure to make landfall, contrary winds and a shortage of provisions would keep them from returning home. Columbus allayed their fears, at least temporarily, and on October 12 land was sighted from the Pinta (though Columbus, on the Niña, later claimed the privilege for himself). The place of the first Caribbean landfall, called Guanahani, is hotly disputed, but San Salvador (Watlings) Island in the Bahamas is generally preferred to other Bahamian islands (Samana Cay, Rum Cay, or the Plana Cays) or to the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Now, obviously, you can have your own opinion of Columbus and his actions, but if you’re only against him because CNN told you so, you may want to read up on the man and his life. Of course, you could also decry Columbus, and still receive the benefits of his life and legacy; as the despicable Philadelphia City Council has done…