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  1. Biggerpicture says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    If I was a school age child I would have a strong opinion in favor of these holiday’s, but as an adult I feel they have become a bit trite, with very little REAL significance in life. But then as a service employee in a resort town, $$$$$!

  2. Dogula says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    They started out as the rare holiday to honor important events/people. They mean nothing anymore, but a day off for government workers and banks.
    But hey, they’re great for Tahoe’s economy.

  3. tahoeadvocate says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    To reinforce recognition of history. Columbus Day should be presented as recognition of the explorers, including Columbus, who helped find and form our country. Presidents Day started as Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays, both in February, now combined into a common day for all presidents. MLK day should be expanded into a day recognizing all those people who contributed to the eventual Civil Rights movement- include those whose died in the Civil War, people like Rosa Parks, Medgar Evers, James Peck (a white Freedom Rider from the 1960s), and those in government through today who continue to monitor Civil Rights. Don’t make it about 1 person but rather the lesson today’s citizens can learn from the efforts of thousands of people working for a common goal.

  4. TahoeKaren says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    I totally agree with tahoeadvocate. None of these days should be about a single person. Perhaps a day named “Freedom Day” to celebrate all who have fought for freedoms of all kinds. And an “Explorers Day” to celebrate those who left the comforts of home to seek new horizons. And, lastly, a “Government Day” to celebrate those who have given to their government to make lives better.
    These are just off the cuff ideas and I hope you all get the jist of what I am suggesting. I would love it if the holidays meant something more than just a day off of work.

  5. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    I feel these people that we honor with a holiday should be memorialized because of their contribution to this country. When I was a kid the teachers at Bijou Elementary would tell us of the greatness of Washington, Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and years later I learned of the civil rights movement and the words of Martin Luther King jr. and so many others.
    My hope is that this is still being taught in our schools today. But I fear that it’s not. Now these holidays are just that… a holiday, a day off and a boost in tourism for the almighty dollar.
    Is it just me or does anyone else fly Old Glory on these special days? I do!!!She’s a bit faded and weather worn(kinda like me!) and while I don’t agree with alot America has done over the years I do respect those that have fallen in service to this country, taking us to where we are today.
    Old Long Skiis

  6. Lisa says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    I think the problem IS that they have become meaningless. The answer is not to do away with them, but rather to actually educate our children as to the importance of what these people did, the sacrifices they made and our shared history as a people. The answer is to renew their meaning and not the other way around.

  7. Toughen Up says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Columbus was a rapist and murderer. Raping adolescent children in the name of exploration. Let’s all take a long weekend and explore the back country of Tahoe in his honor. South Dakota has it right, renaming this holiday, Native American Day. If history has taught us anything, it’s history hasn’t taught us a thing. We are sheep taught to be happy to have a day off of working a job we hate. Even to celebrate a mass murderer.

  8. Lighten Up says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    These holidays have certainly lost much of their cultural significance in recent years, but they are still important days. A response to this question stating that “Columbus was a rapist and murderer” and that “We are sheep taught to be happy to have a day off of working a job we hate” goes against everything that these holidays stand for and continues to chip away and their significance.
    I disagree with the statement “If history has taught us anything, it’s history hasn’t taught us a thing” and believe that although Columbus may not be the hero we were taught about as children, calling Columbus day a day to celebrate a “mass murder” devalues this holiday even more than ignoring this day’s purpose all together.
    I for one am going to enjoy my day off of work while remembering and reminding my children about the brave explorers that helped found this country.

  9. tahoeadvocate says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Old Long Skiis- I fly the flag every day of the year not just on holidays. I wish everyone did.

  10. Dogula says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    “toughen up”: Columbus was a rapist and murderer? A mass murderer at that?
    As the fish would say, link please? Documentation?
    You can hate European culture all you want, but slander should come with a little evidence.
    By the way, American Indians were not that noble, whatever you might think. They held slaves. Western civilization didn’t invent slavery (or rape and murder) but we did END slavery in our own society. Others still embrace it.

  11. Rick says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Tahoeadvocate: I am glad you get enjoyment from flying the flag. My patriotism is not tied up in the flag so I choose not to. Rick

  12. Rick says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Dogula: Columbus’s brutal treatment of indigenous people is well documented. You may choose to believe – oh well, collateral damage, but to put it mildly, he was not a particularly nice guy to Native Americans or other indigenous people in his wake.

    Here is one site, for easy reading, but there are hundreds of scholarly historical books and scholarly articles (read that as published in peer review history journals) documenting his atrocities. These are factual. You may choose to not be troubled by these, but they are factual.


  13. Toughen Up says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Thanks Rick.

    @Dogmafading hit up the library. You can hate Native American culture all you want but if you saw your women and children raped and killed, you might turn a bit savage yourself.

    @Lights Off
    You need to be a shepherd for your children. If you want to Lighten Up on issues of this magnitude, you are lost and need to invest in a better light. I will chip away at Columbus’ high horse as long as you continue to celebrate it. He found some islands in the Caribbean, not our beloved America. He was a viscous monster(My history book says he was responsible for coining the term “Rape and Pillage” after what he did to the poor folks whose island he landed on(different story same B.S.)). Teach your children the truth, and enjoy your day off from the loathsome toil which brings food to the family’s collective gullet. BAhhh

  14. thing fish says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Thanks, Rick. I am surprised that more than a few people don’t know the truth about Columbus.
    From the above link:
    “Within 60 years after Columbus landed, only a few hundred of what may have been 250,000 Taino were left on their island.”
    “As governor and viceroy of the Indies, Columbus imposed iron discipline on what is now the Caribbean country of Dominican Republic, according to documents discovered by Spanish historians in 2005. In response to native unrest and revolt, Columbus ordered the a brutal crackdown in which many natives were killed; in an attempt to deter further rebellion, Columbus ordered their dismembered bodies to be paraded through the streets.”
    Maybe you questioned him being called a mass murderer, because you knew what he did a lot more than mass murder.
    genocide: The deliberate killing of a large group of people, esp. those of a particular ethnic group or nation.

    I don’t think we should celebrate that guy.

  15. Dogula says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    I never said Columbus’ behavior toward the indigenous people wasn’t cruel. I certainly never said I hated American Indians. I asked for factual documentation for your claims. Simple.
    I still think your hatred for Western civilization is founded on false dogma. All cultures have been “oppressed” at one time or another in history. Every civilization has been conquered. Get over it and move on, and learn to appreciate what you’ve got right now.

  16. Columbus says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Columbus didn’t even discover the United States.

  17. Columbus Rules says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    And we should probably tell those oppressed Indian women who are being raped on buses to just “get over it and move on” and appreciate what they have

  18. Rick says - Posted: January 16, 2013


    Your response is simply disingenuous. To quote you, “As the fish would say, link please? Documentation?”

    As I noted documentation is abundant. You went on to say and I quote “You can hate European culture all you want, but slander should come with a little evidence.”

    I do not know “toughen up” and do not know if he/she hates European culture or not, but a fair reading of your comments would leave a educated person with the distinct impression you did not believe Columbus was responsible for the horrible atrocities that are well documented. To slander someone is to make a false statement that damages someone’s reputation. As far as I can tell, while colorful, toughen up spoke factually.

    As someone who may be European centric, you may choose to overlook Columbus’s “indiscretions”. I however believe we have to accept the good and bad of history. What Columbus did, is what Columbus did. I personally choose not to celebrate Columbus, but I also do not hide from history either. Rick

  19. thing fish says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Wait a minute… “I still think your hatred for Western civilization is founded on false dogma”… who hates Western culture? Who said that, where? Quote it.
    If calling people names is a ban worthy offense, so should ‘putting words in peoples mouth”. In my opinion it is worse. I think it is slanderous, which you ironically accused someone else of doing. Please stop it.

    It is common knowledge that Columbus committed genocide, I don’t know anyone who questions it, we all knew it in high school. It isn’t a conspiracy theory, it isn’t something that is based on interpretation. It is well documented.
    ‘A People’s History of The United States” was published in 1980. You can find the info in chapter 1. Welcome to what we knew in 1980.

  20. Toughen Up says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Thanks Rick

    Let’s all pat Dogman on the back for our societies awakening and abolishing of slavery. It is historians that, like yourself, wrote the books, those without the factual evidence, or with created evidence so we can celebrate their “agenda”. Your claim, that I hate Western Civilization, was a serious stretch too pal. Columbo should not be remembered they way our children are taught to. If so, the oppression of everyone should be rewarded with a bankers holiday. Let’s have a Genghis Khan day too(anyone need a link). Our Western Culture’s inclination of rewriting truths and calling fiction “history” should really be rewarded. The framers of history have their own agenda, and you should look beyond the rhymes of “1492 and ocean blue” and seek the truth for yourself. The Italians demanded a holiday, and Chris Columbus had a catchy name, there I said it. Rick will not always be here for you with a stream of links.
    Dismantle Columbus Day!
    Enact Explore your Backyard Day!
    Or how about a Go to the Library Day.

    @Kae thank you for not removing the comments section. It is an enlightening avenue of discourse. MLK day and President’s day should be celebrated. Although I feel we should honor them on their birthday proper, not when it’s convenient for a travel weekend. Shouldn’t they get the same respect that we give to the birth of Jesus. They earned it too. When we celebrate it at a convenient time, it loses it’s meaning a bit.

  21. Toughen Up says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Well put thing fish. Should have refreshed my page before posting. I appreciate your input on the matter and hope this opens an eye or two.

  22. John says - Posted: January 16, 2013

    Thing fish, it is not common knowledge that Columbus committed genocide unless you want to ascribe all of the abominations committed long after his death to him. Its a rather juvenile take on history though. Columbus did ride off in a boat that bumped into the Western Hemisphere. It was at least a bold move, and worthy of celebration if going to the moon or mars is worthy of celebration. Yeah it didn’t work out well for native Americans, but blaming all of the future on Columbus is a little disengenuous.

  23. thing fish says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    John, Columbus himself oversaw, as a governor of an island, the deaths of nearly 250,000 people. I never intended to blame the entire genocide on him, just one parts he was definitely a part of.
    It is common knowledge among the people I know, only one or two of them were PolySci majors. ‘A People’s History…’ was part of the curriculum in AP History.

    In summary, no one should celebrate his achievements.

  24. John says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    Columbus didnt oversee any such thing. There was no germ theory at that time and so he couldnt oversee that.

    Like all humans Columbus was motivated by money. All goods were produced by human labor. The indians on Hispanolia were the source of labor. And it is logical he would kill them?

    That is irrational, at least until labor could be replaced.

  25. Rick says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    John: you speak with incomplete knowledge. You are correct, greed was the key factor, but it drove Columbus to oversee the destruction of the indigenous people from where ever he went. You may think this is counter productive (which it is), but it came largely from a European and Christian arrogance of forcing civilization on the barbarians (i.e., natives, which included sending some off to the slave markets in Seville). The exact number that could be directly attributable to Columbus or his followers demeans the argument; Columbus, directly through his desire to tame the native, and find riches oversaw the destruction of nearly an entire culture. I direct you to an article written by Edmund Morgan, emeritus professor from Yale University in the Smithsonian Magazine in 2009. It does not paint a pretty picture of Mr. Columbus’s treatment of indigenous people nor is one left with any desire to think fondly of his exploits. He is a historical figure, he did sail to the Bahama’s, Caribbean Islands and South America. As Martin Dugard, the historian noted, it is not that Columbus got their first, but he stayed.


  26. John says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    Rick, okay, now Columbus was an explorer and missionary, and in his view was saving the souls of the people he was converting to Catholicism. That is far different from trying to murder an entire people. The motivation does count. Okay did he kill folks…yes. Did he alter native cultures…yes. But genocide…no. Not even close. Its an abomination of the word. Hitler – genocide. Turkey in Armenia – Genocide. Pol Pot – Genocide. Columbus – well at most an ignorant sort of greedy guy.

    Rick it is not cool to judge ancient deeds based on todays knowledge.

  27. Rick says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    John, he and his brothers were arrested and he spent time in jail while governor allegedly due to the brutal atrocities he visited on a number of the natives. He went back to Spain, whereby his riches were bestowed back on him (the rich always survive) but was told he would not be awarded the governorship again. He oversaw the decline of a population of natives from 100,000 to 200 – genocide, outsourcing, call it what you like, it was not good and he treated some indigenous folks very brutally. Some may choose to define this as genocide and I am not sure you could mount a strong argument against. Others (such as you) may more narrowly define the term and would consider it the unintended consequences of greed. I think if not genocide, it falls much closer to that the genocide side then ignorant greed (by a lot actually). Rick

  28. thing fish says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    Columbus was governor and viceroy of The Indies for 60 years, a few hundred natives remained of the 250,000 that were there before. Killing >99% of a group of people apparently isn’t genocide. Learn something new every day. Displaying the mutilated bodies in public is then, a creative public relation campaign? What if he kindly came over, didn’t kill anyone, but enslaved all able bodied people?
    The specifics don’t matter. We could use the least of the atrocities as enough of a reason to not celebrate him. Which is what the topic originally was.

  29. John says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    Thing fish, it was disease. Yes the people died but nobody new about germs. People closed their windows to prevent the evil night vapors from entering the home. Yes there was murder, but it was people who tried to prevent the conversion to Catholicism and would deny eternity in heaven to people. Well yeah people were a little fanatical back then. True. He was too.

    Just a point of fact, your 60 years should have been 6 years. Probably just a typo though. Also, during that period there is very little documentation of torture and the primary accusation was refuted.

  30. John says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    thing fish, you really thought 60 years? You thought those people died when he was there? He died in 1506. You owe the man an apology.

    Stick to correcting the pipe club. You are much much stronger in science.

  31. Rick says - Posted: January 17, 2013


    here is a nice article for you to read which quotes lots of historians (even from Columbus’s day). Columbus engaged forcefully in atrocities, not the least of which was a major player in the slave trade. If yo take a moment and do some searching of scholarly journals (you may have to pay to access some journals) you will find he was atrocious, not just an ignorant greedy man. He actively engaged in atrocities against indigenous people that make a sane person sick (even some from his day). Rick

  32. toughen up says - Posted: January 17, 2013

    Eleven score and sixteen years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal, unless our creator added color.

    Now we are engaged in a great debate, testing whether our basin, or any basin so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure the atrocities bestowed upon the colored and indigenous peoples. We are met on a great battle-field of that debate. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field a day perhaps, as a day of remembrance for those who here and across our great nation gave their lives that that nation might live without them. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this and enact a day with which to remember our sordid love affair with Indian genocide.

    But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this ground, a day; perhaps. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us — that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, abolishing the ludicrous Columbus day, and thus enacting upon said day, a seemingly minimal 24 hours of remembrance for those who suffered the wrath of “superiority” — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

  33. "HangUpsFromWayBack" says - Posted: January 18, 2013