Most people think that Christopher Columbus is this great guy, a person that set out to find a new world for everyone to enjoy, a man that would never hert anyone. Well, those people would be wrong. The main reason that he went out to explore was to make money for himself. The story that we all hear in school would be that he is such a great guy and he discovered America.
If it werent for him we would not be here. He did so much for mankind. Most of these things are true, he did discover America or did he, and there is some contrivesy about this also. The question is if he didn’t find the New World would someone else have.
Did he hear about someone getting ready to go out exploring for this New World, and just beat him to it? There are always two sides to every story; the question is what side are you listening to? The story by Daniel J. Boorstin has this type of meaning to it. The story describes how Christopher had done all of these great things. That he was out exploring for his mother country, that is the story we all hear in school and it also shows a side that we dont hear.
The one that shows Columbus as this great guy and the other story which I am writing on Columbus, the Indians, and Human Progress by Howard Zinn, shows the opposite side. The side that is more two sided. The story by Daniel J. Boorstin has the type of elementary school ring to it.
By it being the story that you hear most about Columbus. If you have heard this story then you know that it is very easy to believe and you have most likely fallen for it. People make it sound like he struggled his way across the ocean, in a ship that was falling apart. But Zinn says, His voyage was something like a Caribbean cruise(400). You may have questioned the story or maybe not, but for some people like Howard Zinn, it just didn’t sound right. His side of the story is that Columbus was going out just for himself, to make himself money and to make himself famous.
He tells about how Columbus was friend with the Indians and then when they would not give his men what he had asked them for he was now there enemy. He told the Indian people that they had to collect so much gold every month and if they did not do so their hands would be cut off. Columbus had promised people back in his homeland that he would bring slaves back with him. Where do you think these slaves came from? They were the Indians. He would load them up by the thousands, but by the time that they would get to their destination most of them would be dead.
Both stories has things to support themselves. It is rather interesting the story that Zinn brings up because most people never hear anything like that.