Monday, October 13, 2014

Columbus Day, 1492, and Do I Celebrate or Am I Blue?

On the path of full disclosure:

I had Columbus Day off today, and I loved it.  I really did.  3 days are the size that every weekend should be.  Especially here as I begin a new year, and a new job.

I. Love. 3 Day Weekends.

Yes, this is spoken as only a teacher can speak!

BUT....

Did I toast good ole CC?

Did I raise a glass to the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria?

Do I think Chris C is awesome to end all awesomeness?

Do I post a flag and take over a native community--much like he did, back in 1492?

No.

I am a girl who enjoys a teacher day off, but I am also a girl who has taught a half dozen years in Florida.  Good ole Chris Columbus is not revered in Florida.  Good ole Chris Columbus isn't revered many places.  In MOST places.  Chris Columbus was a greedy you-know-what.  Especially here in the aftermath of his true creds being outted and his reputation for being a not-so-nice-guy brought to the fore-front.  The Vikings even beat him too it by 500 years.  And you know what kind of guys those Vikings were!

Yes, it is still a federal holiday for some.  In fact, as of last year, 23 states AND DC did give their working folk the day off.

ColumbusDay

As a way of combatting the CC'conundrum, some people go the opposite direction, like Seattle, and declare the day "Indiginous People Day." (Check out the video!)

One of my favorite Christopher Columbus classroom traditions is to read the Jane Yolen book, "Encounter."  It tells the tale of CC's acquisition by way of takeover of the Tainos people.  It doesn't paint a pretty picture.  Every year, I have students comment on how wretched and evil good ole Chris looks.  This book trailer does a nice job of summing up the book.



But no one can quite do the anti-PC-holiday quite like John Oliver.
Take note:  it's not kid-friendly!



Christopher Columbus pic with stamp from http://usa.greekreporter.com/files/2011/10/Christopher-Columbus-Greek.jpg; Columbus Day map from http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/10/14/working-on-columbus-day-it-depends-on-where-you-live/; video from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKEwL-10s7E

No comments :

Post a Comment