View Poll Results: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

Voters
61. You may not vote on this poll
  • He should be judged strictly by today's standards and mores.

    6 9.84%
  • Somewhere in the middle. (Please elaborate)

    9 14.75%
  • He should be judged by the standards and more of the time in which he lived.

    37 60.66%
  • Other

    9 14.75%
Page 14 of 15 FirstFirst ... 412131415 LastLast
Results 131 to 140 of 146

Thread: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

  1. #131
    Phonetic Mnemonic
    radcen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Look to your right... I'm that guy.
    Last Seen
    Today @ 12:08 AM
    Lean
    Centrist
    Posts
    33,432

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by shrubnose View Post
    At that time going around Africa would have been his best bet from Europe.
    Do you really believe that his goal was to get to India solely for the sake of getting to India? Is it not possible that he was seeking a better and/or faster way to India?

    You do understand that the purpose of exploring is to find new things or ways, not to simply retrace the already known paths, right?
    If you claim sexual harassment to be wrong, yet you defend anyone on your side for any reason,
    then you are a hypocrite and everything you say on the matter is just babble.

  2. #132
    Sage
    shrubnose's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Europe
    Last Seen
    11-29-17 @ 03:46 AM
    Gender
    Lean
    Centrist
    Posts
    18,851
    Blog Entries
    2

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by radcen View Post
    Do you really believe that his goal was to get to India solely for the sake of getting to India? Is it not possible that he was seeking a better and/or faster way to India?


    You do understand that the purpose of exploring is to find new things or ways, not to simply retrace the already known paths, right?


    Columbus never made it to India.

  3. #133
    Phonetic Mnemonic
    radcen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Look to your right... I'm that guy.
    Last Seen
    Today @ 12:08 AM
    Lean
    Centrist
    Posts
    33,432

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by shrubnose View Post
    Columbus never made it to India.
    You have left me speechless. I... literally don't know what to say. Maybe I could pontificate on my liking of cheesecake. It would be about as relevant to this thread as your understanding of, and responses to, the topic itself.
    If you claim sexual harassment to be wrong, yet you defend anyone on your side for any reason,
    then you are a hypocrite and everything you say on the matter is just babble.

  4. #134
    Sage
    AlbqOwl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    New Mexico
    Last Seen
    Yesterday @ 08:21 PM
    Gender
    Lean
    Other
    Posts
    17,568
    Blog Entries
    2

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fiddytree View Post
    Jefferson didn't work "tirelessly" to end slavery. Franklin could possibly be seen as having done more than Jefferson. Was he philosophically against it? Yes. Was he, like many of his southern ilk, nevertheless tied to it? Yes. The "peculiar institution" did that to people, and Jefferson was no exception. He was fairly mum on the subject during his political prime. Sure, he thought much like many during his time, that perhaps you could free them, send them off to a remote colony somewhere; but with age came greater and greater reluctance to act. Toward the end of Jefferson's life, he had a letter from an up and coming gentleman (whose name escapes me). This young man wanted to rally support for more anti-slavery measures and sentiment. Jefferson in his more elderly years could have offered support, some social networks, whatever have you. Instead, the man diligently responded by telling the young man that the enterprise wasn't really worth the bother.

    Does this to me mean that Jefferson's merits are destroyed? Not really, no. He did many great things. But much like John Adams' legacy had to endure for centuries, so too must Jefferson deal with the sensibilities of his successors of many generations down the line. It became somewhat of a canard to think that the greatness of american Presidents went from Washington to Jefferson, skipping poor frumpy Adams. Why? Because Adams not only made political errors with his cabinet, but he also was seen as this anti-democratic monster who crushed dissent during an emerging war. But now Mr. Adams is receiving a bit of a resurgence. Not just because of the War on Terror's reevaluation of civil liberties, but also because, quite frankly, Adams comes out smelling better with the slavery and race test than Jefferson does. It's the blunt truth.

    Is the race or slavery test a bad idea? No. As I said before, each successive generation does this with the past anyway. We can't change that. But what has largely gone unsaid here (with exception to one poster) is that these ideas bring uncomfortable narrative changes to the predominant white historical narrative. Increases in criticisms of slavery or race are somehow construed as *merely* the creation of modernist sensibilities. This forgets, however, that there was another people living amongst the political class of the era, and they also sometimes happened to have a different skin color. Those people's perceptions matter. Black voice isn't isolated to modernist sensibilities. It's part of the past. It's inescapably tangled with it. Bringing that to the forefront isn't a dereliction of duty of being a scholar. It's perfectly in line with scholarship. should it keep in mind the dominant power structures in place and how that works? Absolutely. I have said so before numerous times. Nevertheless, that doesn't mean your slaves and black folks don't get a vote, either.

    Will it change? Yep. Probably in directions which we can't quite predict yet. That's the way history works in the public's perception.
    Well I linked a credible, well researched history for Jefferson's efforts re slavery and I believe that to be an honest history. It is always important when discussing history to know that one thing is different from another. To incorporate slavery into everything that Jefferson saw, taught, preached, proposed or did is to distort the history as much as leaving slavery out of it would distort the history.

    It is the same with Columbus. The anti-American history people who want to make it all something sinister and bad, as opposed to the mostly leftist doctrines of what is good and noble and righteous today, will write a history that makes a Columbus or a Jefferson or pick a person look as terrible as possible. And the result is that any objective analysis of those times, those cultures, people being who and what they were in their own time gets lost in the demonization. A competent historian does not judge the past by the standards of the present.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

  5. #135
    Traveler

    Jack Hays's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Williamsburg, Virginia
    Last Seen
    Today @ 12:19 AM
    Gender
    Lean
    Independent
    Posts
    54,920
    Blog Entries
    2

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by shrubnose View Post
    Columbus never made it to India.
    That would have been less important than what he actually did.
    "It's always reassuring to find you've made the right enemies." -- William J. Donovan

  6. #136
    Angry Former GOP Voter
    Fiddytree's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Last Seen
    Today @ 03:51 AM
    Gender
    Lean
    Centrist
    Posts
    25,703

    How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlbqOwl View Post
    Well I linked a credible, well researched history for Jefferson's efforts re slavery and I believe that to be an honest history. It is always important when discussing history to know that one thing is different from another. To incorporate slavery into everything that Jefferson saw, taught, preached, proposed or did is to distort the history as much as leaving slavery out of it would distort the history.

    It is the same with Columbus. The anti-American history people who want to make it all something sinister and bad, as opposed to the mostly leftist doctrines of what is good and noble and righteous today, will write a history that makes a Columbus or a Jefferson or pick a person look as terrible as possible. And the result is that any objective analysis of those times, those cultures, people being who and what they were in their own time gets lost in the demonization. A competent historian does not judge the past by the standards of the present.
    But we absolutely know that these situations occurred between foreman, overseer, and slave in Jefferson's management of his estate.

    No, it's not a separate issue. This is philosophy and politics personified. Jefferson saw up close how racial mores, and slavery, and politics collided. They are not only an integral part of understanding the man and his social relationships, but also his philosophy, politics, and governance. Sally and any resulting children completely illustrate how politics and philosophy are necessarily entwined. It doesn't go away just because you wish it to.

    Like I said, Jefferson did a lot of good, but as a result of changes in our society and our increased ability to take seriously black primary sources comes a more critical look at his life.

    Columbus experiences the same fate. Before. White Americans writing the histories held indigenous source material with a lack of respect for many reasons, many of which were purely as a result of bigotry and belief in the inherent superiority of the written word. These things change with time. Nevertheless, the perspective of native peoples will now become something we have to weigh with more consideration than we had in the previous couple of generations.

    My anti-Americanism is not at play, since I am not an anti-American leftist. I try to go where the materials will take me. tThat often leads me to uncomfortable areas, but I'm not out to massage Americans' psyche when I do my work. If I take positions which sound complimentary to the Right, so be it. If the Left, so be it.
    Last edited by Fiddytree; 10-15-14 at 06:49 PM.
    Michael J Petrilli-"Is School Choice Enough?"-A response to the recent timidity of American conservatives toward education reform. https://nationalaffairs.com/publicat...-choice-enough

  7. #137
    Sage
    AlbqOwl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    New Mexico
    Last Seen
    Yesterday @ 08:21 PM
    Gender
    Lean
    Other
    Posts
    17,568
    Blog Entries
    2

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fiddytree View Post
    But we absolutely know that these situations occurred between foreman, overseer, and slave in Jefferson's management of his estate.

    No, it's not a separate issue. This is philosophy and politics personified. Jefferson saw up close how racial mores, and slavery, and politics collided. They are not only an integral part of understanding the man and his social relationships, but also his philosophy, politics, and governance. Sally and any resulting children completely illustrate how politics and philosophy are necessarily entwined. It doesn't go away just because you wish it to.

    Like I said, Jefferson did a lot of good, but as a result of changes in our society and our increased ability to take seriously black primary sources comes a more critical look at his life.

    Columbus experiences the same fate. Before. White Americans writing the histories held indigenous source material with a lack of respect for many reasons, many of which were purely as a result of bigotry and belief in the inherent superiority of the written word. These things change with time. Nevertheless, the perspective of native peoples will now become something we have to weigh with more consideration than we had in the previous couple of generations.

    My anti-Americanism is not at play, since I am not an anti-American leftist. I try to go where the materials will take me. tThat often leads me to uncomfortable areas, but I'm not out to massage Americans' psyche when I do my work. If I take positions which sound complimentary to the Right, so be it. If the Left, so be it.
    So we will just have to disagree. As a historian, I will not judge the past according to what is said to be good and evil in the current culture. Nor will I presume to be privy to what Jefferson knew or what mores guided his thoughts and actions or what Columbus knew etc. separate from the probabilities that would be part of what we know of the culture of their times and what they themselves revealed of their thoughts and beliefs. I think to presume to be privy to more than that is to base one's opinions upon prejudices and propaganda intended to indoctrinate.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

  8. #138
    Advisor
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Last Seen
    @
    Gender
    Lean
    Very Liberal
    Posts
    381

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius46 View Post
    European settlers. He was European and his actions as they relate to how we judge Columbus the man must be judged by the morality he lived under. That would
    be European.
    I see, so when we judge the racist bastards that lynched black people in the 60's we should only judge them by their peers of the same time perod. Not by today's standard or at least not by a black man's view. Are you sure this is the only morality we can judge people under?

  9. #139
    Sage
    Gaius46's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    New York
    Last Seen
    Yesterday @ 06:15 PM
    Gender
    Lean
    Libertarian
    Posts
    8,495

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tuatara View Post
    I see, so when we judge the racist bastards that lynched black people in the 60's we should only judge them by their peers of the same time perod. Not by today's standard or at least not by a black man's view. Are you sure this is the only morality we can judge people under?
    You've chosen a bad example. We all generally agreed in the 60s that racism and lynchings were bad things. We codified it in law one hundred years previously.


    There are two separate things that need to be judged. The man is one, his actions the other. We can judge his actions as immoral based on our prevailing morality. But I suggest we have to judge the person himself based on the morality he lived under. Look at this way. Say you're a meateater and 100 years from now we figure out that cows actually are sentient, intelligent creatures and we accord them civil rights. By the lights of that future age your eating a hamburger was an immoral act. But are you an immoral person?
    Don't be a grammar nazi - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book 1 #7

  10. #140
    Advisor
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Last Seen
    @
    Gender
    Lean
    Very Liberal
    Posts
    381

    Re: How should Christopher Columbus be judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius46 View Post
    You've chosen a bad example. We all generally agreed in the 60s that racism and lynchings were bad things. We codified it in law one hundred years previously.


    There are two separate things that need to be judged. The man is one, his actions the other. We can judge his actions as immoral based on our prevailing morality. But I suggest we have to judge the person himself based on the morality he lived under. Look at this way. Say you're a meateater and 100 years from now we figure out that cows actually are sentient, intelligent creatures and we accord them civil rights. By the lights of that future age your eating a hamburger was an immoral act. But are you an immoral person?
    I don't think analogy is a bad example because it centers around how humans treat other humans. Any time there is a lot of controversy about someone being labelled a hero or great, it's time to re-elvaluate this position to see if they are really worthy. If we are going to judge Columbus on his merits we should also judge him on his faults, by all time and all people.

Page 14 of 15 FirstFirst ... 412131415 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •