Monday, October 11, 2010
It's kind of hard to celebrate Columbus Day. I mean really, what exactly are we celebrating? The arrival of Europeans onto this continent was not great for the landscape or the people living here at the time. Things went downhill fast.
The book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, by Charles C. Mann, is incredible revisionist history. Wow. What a place this was once upon a time.
Ah. But what's the point in getting all sentimental? Shit happens, I guess. We are, after all, a migratory species - we always have been. Our survival instinct is powerful indeed. We humans have always done everything we could to prevail over the land as well as over other clans. And then there was the smallpox, too. Yikes.
It's another lovely day in DC. The kids are out of school, the government is closed down for the day. There will be no trash pick-up, no postal delivery. But many of us are going to work as usual, including me. C'est la vie.
We Europeans and Africans have been on this land for hundreds of years, so maybe it's time to stop celebrating Columbus, and instead figure out how to become indigenous - which would mean (to me) connecting in a deep way with the land so as to inspire in every one of us a desire to nurture and care for this beautiful continent and each other. I know - I am such a dreamer! But I'm not the only one! (xx oo John Lennon.) Shalom.