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Why the US celebrates Columbus Day

  • Published on: 08 October 2018
  • Should Columbus Day be Indigenous Peoples’ Day?

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    In past decades, Christopher Columbus has gone from unquestioned US hero to problematic figure. For centuries, the destruction and disease he ushered into the Americas have been set aside, allowing the myth of a pioneering sailor who discovered America and proved the world was round to embed itself in US culture. But as this myth has been increasingly confronted with brutal historical facts, things have started to change.

    While Columbus still has a national holiday in his honor, complete with parades and celebrations, there are many people fighting to dismantle the myth that surrounds him and choosing to celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day instead.

    Watch this video to understand how Columbus became a US icon over time and why his status is in question today.

    Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com

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  • Runtime : 5:46
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  • Vox
    Vox   1 weeks ago

    Correction: At 00:32 we incorrectly say that Columbus never set foot on North American soil. Columbus landed in Central America and the Caribbean which are both regions in North America. We meant to say that Columbus never reached the United States. We regret the error.

  • 1503nemanja
    1503nemanja   7 hours ago

    You are intentionally misleading people. Columbus largely was not responsible for the worst offenses committed, and most came after his role was finished. The channel Knowing Better has a good vid about what Columbus was and was not responsible for. So why are natives mad at him, he did not harm them or their ancestors personally and if not him some other European would uncover America and then the same would happen. Especially US Native Americans have no reason to hate him.As a non-American I think the best solution is to celebrate both Columbus Day and Native American Day on the same day and let everyone pick what they like and it creates unity since it celebrates both those who were already there and those who came later. Maybe rename it to Reconciliation Day and let everyone celebrate the legacy they like, native or colonial, or ideally both. Anyway I see no reason to hate on Columbus, his supposed vileness is greatly exaggerated and his good sides forgotten, both in case of him personally and what his arrival lead to.

  • José Andreu
    José Andreu   12 hours ago

    You "opressed people" always weeping. Dude, consquest has been cruel throughout the whole world history. It keeps same nowadays, don´t cry about people you never knew (since they are just another conquered peoples in history) and about opression you never experienced. Is that hard to celebrate an event that brought development and joy to the world as it was america's colonization? Yeah it was cruel, but which event in international human contact wasn't ?

  • DSWynne
    DSWynne   19 hours ago

    The Native American community should have their own "Indigenous People's Day". Why? Trying to rename a day smacks reactionary activism (kind of like how Marxist, Islamists and even Christians have had a history of destroying holidays and cultures). The community should be proactive, in that they should choose a day that has nothing to do with Columbus. Celebrate the different "nations" that exist on the North American continent. And if this day is suppose to be American-centric, then I propose making September 17th as Indigenous People's Day. Why? It was the first treaty signed between the Delaware Indians and the United States government (Treaty of Fort Pitt, 1778). Alternatively, make a day in early November Indigenous People's Day. Why? November is Native American Heritage Month. In other words, promote Amerind Culture and History in a way that enhances the American Experience, not damage it with identity politics. Not necessary.

  • i C
    i C   20 hours ago

    And yet we ignore the similar things the natives did

  • White People
    White People   21 hours ago

    Vox - Form your opinion, then do your research to fit information to that opinion.

  • White People
    White People   21 hours ago

    We do not celebrate Columbus because he discovered the united STATES of America... we celebrate him because he discovered the AMERICAS. (not counting Leif Erikson)

  • Alexis Sarabia
    Alexis Sarabia   1 days ago

    Nobody celebrates Columbus day, its just a no work day for some people.

  • Shawn
    Shawn   1 days ago

    If I ever have kids. I’ll teach them REAL history. Not whitewashed glamorized history that waters down the atrocities committed by colonizers AROUND the world There’s ZERO purpose to celebrate Columbus Day

  • whitedevilvaz
    whitedevilvaz   2 days ago

    Columbus nationality is still disputed. It is not certain he was italian. He could have also been portuguese or spanish.

  • Rick Foley
    Rick Foley   2 days ago

    Another reason to hate myself. Well played, Vox.

  • Lucas Moore
    Lucas Moore   3 days ago

    “Children were told...” Let’s let vox speak for all children. This is such a poorly organized “educational” platform

  • Mobile Gaming Express

    Idc if it's Columbus Day or Indigenous People's Day, I just want my 3-day weekend.

  • Poopy Scoop
    Poopy Scoop   3 days ago

    You guys are forgetting how these Indians were acting like douche-bags to Christopher Columbus. So he and his group fought with guns while the Indians had spears. Who would win the rivalry. Columbus also made peace with another group of Indians that didn’t try to kill which something we are never told.

  • Marquitos
    Marquitos   3 days ago

    So you blame the massacre of North American natives by first the British Empire and later the USA on Columbus. That makes no sense to me. The king and Queen of Spain declared native people in the Americas to have soul and be treated as humans, that is why unlike north America, latin american natives are the predominant ethnic group in the parts that were colonized by Spain and you find none or little African descents there too, because transport of slaves in Spain was forbid from the very beginning of the colonization. Besides, it is not clear that Columbus was a Genovese. With this video your buying the black legend of the Spanish Empire, lies built by other European nations at that time to criticize the power of the Spanish crown by then and have an excuse to make pirates Lords.

  • Pierre00
    Pierre00   4 days ago

    If you want to see what the Spaniards did with all the gold stolen/plundered from the Americas visit Madrid!

  • gjaddajg
    gjaddajg   4 days ago

    More leftist propaganda from Vox.

  • jean-claude schwartz

    The credit of the discovery of America shouldn't go to Christopher Columbus, that should go to Indigenous people and Vikings.

  • Ionatan Simón
    Ionatan Simón   4 days ago

    Liberal agenda... they give fake facts to support their ideas.....

  • Sceptre
    Sceptre   4 days ago

    You can tell a lot about a people by looking at their honored! Needless to say, those defending Columbus descend from the same wicked seed! They have Andrew Jackson on their currency! Benny Franklin also “discovered” electrical current w/a “stringed” kite... yeah I never saw a string conduct a current either but “high iQ” wyte ppl said so , so it’s must be true, right?But the hypocrites talk about Castro or pigs on socks? Yeah , some nerve huh.... low character even less morals...

  • Blackwood Dreamz
    Blackwood Dreamz   4 days ago

    It's called propaganda. There was no mention of the slaves that came with his murderous journeys.

  • Nine Nifty Facts
    Nine Nifty Facts   5 days ago


    JRD MADNESS   5 days ago

    But one side wanted to kill the other skins so the eropeans help the peaceful side

  • Mateo Valenzuela
    Mateo Valenzuela   5 days ago

    if anyone thinsk columbus is a genocidal maniac, then go watch knowing better's video about columbus, it changed my views!

  • Child of the Horned One

    I’m not even at the beginning of the video and I already know that there is gonna be some BULLSHIT in this

  • Sean Boundy
    Sean Boundy   5 days ago

    While there are many bad things that happened after Columbus arrived, there are also many good things that happened. For one thing, if Columbus hadn't arrived none of us would have been born.

  • 777face space
    777face space   5 days ago

    As long as it gets me outta school i really dont care

  • Matthew Jay
    Matthew Jay   5 days ago

    3:57 WRONG! Knights of Columbus were founded by the Irish-Americans: Venerable Father Michael J. McGivney.

  • Beemer
    Beemer   6 days ago

    Meh. If it's that important, then just rename the holiday to "indigenous people day." Seems like more of a non-issue than anything.

  • prede89
    prede89   6 days ago

    This video is garbage. It ignores the fact that we celebrate Columbus Day because he discovered the new world and set off the age of exploration. Yes Yes the vikings were in the new world first, but they didn't tell anyone, and it did not set off the age of exploration.