By Chris Gelardi
Read the full article from The Nation, here.
“What these Columbus defenders are saying, in essence, is that the idolization of a genocidaire is excusable because Italian Americans over a century ago decided to build a mythology around him. They take a play from the Confederate apologists’ book in arguing that a historical figure like Columbus shouldn’t be judged by contemporary standards—as if mass killing, slavery, pillaging, and human trafficking were acceptable during certain time periods.”
“As the largest professional organization in the country representing historians of U.S. history, the Organization of American Historians opposes the biased views and mischaracterizations of historical inquiry and education expressed in these statements. Further, the OAH rejects the narrow and celebratory “1776 Project” put forward in this speech as a partisan ploy meant to restrict historical pedagogy, stifle deliberative discussion, and take us back to an earlier era characterized by a limited vision of the U.S. past.”