During a news conference at the UN General Assembly session last month, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez spoke of an emerging "American Indian" style of socialism in Latin America. Chavez hailed fellow Latin American presidents who are of native American stock, including Evo Morales of Bolivia, who Chavez called a "proud Aymara."
Matched against the newly-emerging native American power movements in Latin America is the fact that the United States continues to celebrate a holiday in honor of an Italian mercenary in the employment of the Spanish crown whose mercantilist brigands brought forth in the Western Hemisphere a six hundred year Holocaust that saw the genocide of 65 million native Americans through warfare, premeditated slaughter, disease, and famine. Columbus's arrival also presaged the destruction of the 500 native American nations that graced the Western Hemisphere from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego.
The peculiar celebration of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the "New World" is generally billed as a celebration of Italian-Americans in the United States. However, for native Americans, it is a celebration of colonialism, mercantilism, imperialism, and racism. If there is a need to celebrate Italian contributions to America, why not celebrate Frank Sinatra Day? Certainly, his musical contributions, unlike the pestilence and colonial greed introduced by Columbus, did not lead to the wholesale slaughter of an entire race of people.
Or, at the very least, October 12 could be a dual-holiday, Columbus Day for those who want to celebrate the exploits of a genocidaire, and, as it is celebrated in Venezuela, a "Day of Indigenous Resistance," for those who want to remember the holocaust of the native Americans. For Africans, Columbus is remembered as a Portuguese slave trader who pimped out his services to the Portuguese.
Today, the United States "celebrates" the native Americans by naming its sports teams "Washington Redskins" (Andrew Jackson, who graces the twenty dollar bill, and his Indian fighters skinned native American males from the waist down and fashioned pants from their skin, i.e. "redskin pants") and "Cleveland Indians" (with a racist logo of bucked tooth native American). For some Americans, native American reservations are now gambling meccas. Jailed GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who employed every shyster business tactic he could think of to maximize his profits from lobbying for Indian gaming and casinos, called his native American clients "monkeys" (his name for the Choctaw tribal council), "troglodytes," "morons," and "mofos."
The sovereignty of native American nations, enshrined by the treaties various U.S. Presidents sign with the tribal nations, has been perverted by a group of "mishpucka" gangsters intent on abusing the sovereignty of the tribes to foster gambling, as its associated vices of booze, cigarette and drug smuggling, and prostitution.
President Chavez told the press in New York that he once served, as a Venezuelan military officer, with a mission sent to Guatemala. There, he witnessed the local Guatemalan special forces, the School of the Americas-trained Kaibiles, boasting of their massacres of the native Mayan Indians. Chavez said he then realized that those were "my people" being killed by the Guatemalan military. Chavez said he vowed that the native Americans people would no longer be subjected to such brutality and as President of Venezuela, Chavez has made common cause with those Latin American leaders and groups that are fighting the neo-imperialism directed against the native peoples of the Western Hemisphere. And it is no coincidence that the only country in the Americas that is named after Columbus is Colombia, a narco-fascist-run nation that will soon host seven U.S. military bases, courtesy of Nobel Peace Prize winner Barack Obama.
On this day, there should be a presidential ceremony at a site on the Washington Mall that honors the Holocaust. Not the museum at the west end of the Mall, the European Holocaust Museum, but the one at the east end of the mall, the Native American Museum. Those who visit the Native American Museum will hear a recording describing the holocaust of 65 million native Americans. It is the Holocaust that no one wants to talk about -- it is holocaust denial in the extreme.
But now, back to the real America. Everyone go out and take advantage of those Columbus Day sales. After all, it is a fitting way to celebrate someone who was doing the blood-soaked bidding of the Spanish mercantilists and capitalists of his day.