Cause you all better be celebrating.
After all, it's Columbus Day.
The banks are closed!
The post offices are closed!
The indigenous peoples have been properly subjugated, massaced, and generally put in their (second-rate) place!
I'm thrilled, aren't you?
I am exorbitantly proud to live in a country that celebrates an official national holiday to commemorate a man who never set foot (or eye, for that matter) on the aforementioned country.* I am pleased as punch to take this time off of work so that I can contemplate the imperialist colonial clusterfuck that is the reason that they speak Spanish in latin america in the first place.**
I'm so proud that we have a freaking parade to celebrate the theft of a continent and the murder of its peoples.
What a great day to be an American.
One thing I am proud of? The fact that somewhere, out there, on the streets of Chicago, twenty sixth-grade girls are boycotting Columbus Day, and telling their friends and family what it is that we're really "celebrating" today. And the fact that they did it on their own. I didn't make them do it. I didn't force it on them. I wasn't even the one who brought it up! They asked intelligent, probing questions, and came to their own conclusions about the facts.*** In fact, they're planning to start a petition that our school forgo the Columbus Day holiday in favor of a celebration of el Dia de la Raza. They won't win, but it's important to them that they say something.
Some days I love my job.
*Great. Columbus was "Italian." So are you. So was Mussolini! Where's his parade? I'm waiting, all you Italian-Americans! Besides, who sent Columbus to the "New" World in the first place? Um, that would be the Spanish. What? They don't even get a damn float? Oh, the injustice.
**What? You thought that the indigenous people all spoke Spanish before the conquerors came? Of course they did! And, upon discovering their shared language and cultural mores, they all sat down to have a very pleasant tea party together. Nobody was killed, nobody was enslaved, and nobody was forced to accept Catholicism. And they all lived happily ever after. The End.
***Granted, the conclusions of a bunch of eleven-year-old girls sound like this: "Like, Oh, My, God! What a racist! Why are people so stupid?!" and "That's so dumb! I'd rather go to school than celebrate that!" and my personal favorite: "That's freaking lame!"