Christopher Columbus was a Real Life Supervillain

Christiana Smith, Reporter

            Christopher Columbus is commemorated as the man who “discovered America”. However, in reality, he was a greedy and sadistic tyrant, directly responsible for the mass genocide of indigenous people in the Caribbean. Columbus sailed for weeks across the Atlantic ocean from Spain and arrived in the present day Bahamas. He and his men soon discovered that there were already inhabitants in the island. They called their land Guanahani and were known as the Taino people. The Tainos were kind and friendly towards Columbus but their kindness was not reciprocated. Columbus decided to claim their land for Spain and rename it San Salvador. He also proceeded to capture and enslave them, selling women and young girls into sexual slavery. He forced them to convert to Christianity and slaughtered any who refused to obey him. At times, even with no logical reason to kill the Tainos, he would just decapitate them for his own personal enjoyment. In addition to that, many of the people on the island ended up committing suicide out of fear and despair, realizing that there was no other way to escape enslavement. 

Years following Columbus’ reign of terror, only few of the once thousands of indigenous people remained in the islands. Today, many people are alright with excusing his horrific acts of brutality on innocent people because of his “discovery” of America. But the truth is, he never set foot in present day America. The place where he landed was the Caribbean and people were already residing there, therefore, he wasn’t the first person to go there. Christopher Columbus has been praised for centuries for stepping on land that had already been discovered and settled. He has been revered for discovering America even though he never actually set foot there. Instead of celebrating Columbus’ Day, Indigenous Peoples’ Day should be celebrated to honor the people who truly were the first to inhabit America and to also honor the thousands who lost their lives. As of right now, Indigenous Peoples’ Day is being celebrated in many states across America but it should also firmly replace Columbus’ Day as the national holiday on the second Monday of October.