Re: “Exploring the irony of Columbus Day,” Liana Aghajanian’s Intersections column, Oct. 9: I do not know what professor Roger Bowerman finds puzzling and offensive about Columbus Day.
We live on a beautiful continent, and Columbus found it after a very risky voyage from Europe. Thus the United States is celebrating the discovery that made our country, and Canada, possible.
The world belongs to those who are advanced and strong. The human advance in this world has been led by empires. The English settlers of 1607 came from a country that had the good fortune to be conquered and made part of the Roman Empire. Thus they got the benefit of the civilizing effect of previous empires.
All this was behind those Jamestown immigrants, who had pigs, goats, chickens, cows and the horse, all obtained via other empires. They also brought the European honey bee that pollinated anything within sight, greatly increasing the crops, while the local ones were choosy and not of much use. In the end, the more advanced took over the country. Thus the world progresses. The Colonists and Indians helped each other then.
The American Indian is no less a man because his isolation denied him the benefits of the work of others. He survived in bitter climates. They were proud people. But life is a relentless struggle; and he was overmatched. Thus he joined those who were conquered.
Now, between us and Canada we have this beautiful half continent now occupied by some 370 million people, and the most advanced in the world.
Frank W. Bunkell