Guest Column: Ray Hanania – Columbus Day is Democracy, and a challenge to the tyranny we face

Note to readers of from time to time I’ll post views from others.  I’ll agree with some, and disagree. Agreement isn’t the point. Diversity of thought is the point. The free exchange of ideas is the point. We’re losing that in this country, with each of us in our own silos. Ray is a veteran Chicago City Hall reporter. We worked together back in the day. He had the desk next to mine in the City Hall press room. He ran “the Grapevine” political column at the old Southtown, later he moved to the Sun Times. Here is his Columbus Day column, published with permission from his website


By Ray Hanania

As a Democracy, America is built on many principles. One of the most important is the principle that Majority Rules.

Provisions exist to prevent the “Tyranny of the Majority,” but the fundamental basis for everything we do in voting and governance is based on a majority to reach decisions, take actions or elect representatives. Without Majority Rule, we are not a Democracy.

So, why are we allowing a small group of violent thugs, an insane minority of fanatics, to disparage and slander this country? Why are we allowing them to bully the majority and change our lives?

Why is the majority being forced to surrender to the minority? I am not speaking about “minority” in the qualitative terms of ethnicity, religion or national origin. I am speaking of it in quantitative terms on which Majority Rule is based.

We allow an insane minority to impose their selfish and distorted interests to hold our just principles hostage, and to violate laws when it is convenient for their “causes?”

Over the past few years, a small group of loudmouthed and violent fanatics have begun to bully the country into a submission via orchestrated shame.

Much of this injustice is done in the name of twisted morality. George Floyd was a drugged-up thief, was unjustly treated. Rather than hold the officers accountable for their crimes, the fanatics went to great extremes to blame the entire nation.

That movement of hatred fueled a rampage of violence. They destroyed businesses and injured thousands across the country. There was no “George Floyd” justice for the victims whose stores were looted, burned down, or many individuals who were seriously injured and, in some cases, killed.

These protestors hide behind allegations of “racism” and they stereotype everyone else. They distort history by narrowly focusing on events that favor their claims and bully everyone else into silence.

It’s time that the Majority stand up and fight back. And for me, celebrating Columbus Day is the front line of this new war.

Christopher Columbus isn’t the symbol of the European destruction of Native American or “indigenous” populations. He is the person who helped begun the process of bringing greater civilization to this continent. Columbus represented but one period in human history in which population change took place.

Who is really “indigenous?”

The fanatics start their history when it is convenient to their cause. It didn’t start with the Native Americans.

As it turns out, every society has a “Christopher Columbus” who brought their beliefs and “civilization” by conquest to others. The Comanches were among the most ruthless in destroying other societies.

Long before Columbus arrived on the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria in 1492, “Native American” tribes had pillaged and destroyed other indigenous populations that were here before them. Evidence shows Neanderthals were here more than 130,000 years ago, destroyed by a migration of Homo Sapiens from Africa and the Middle East who settled America in their place.

Before you start destroying statues of Columbus, tear down the monuments of Native Americans, a culture of brutal tribes who were as vicious as the settlers who followed their arrival.

We all learned about how Hernan Cortez landed in Mexico and conquered the Aztecs in the 16th Century. But no one talks about how the Aztecs brought their bloodied and cannibalistic traditions of ripping out their victims’ hearts atop spectacularly built pyramids today’s tourists visit in awe.

The Aztecs arrived 300 years before and destroyed the “indigenous” populations in the 13th Century.

Slavery flourished in Africa long before it became transcontinental and spread to Europe and then America. Slavery was invented by every conqueror, including among the Black civilizations in West and Central Africa. Slavery is wrong. But don’t falsely blame it on one people in order to give yourself gain and close your eyes to your own transgressions.

These hypocrites want to begin their narrative not when they committed worldly transgression. They start their moral indignation on their selfish timeline.

They tear down statues of others like Thomas Jefferson, Robert E. Lee and Christopher Columbus because it suits their hypocritical agendas that are often built on narrow historical distortions.

They tear them down because their movement is based on a hypocritical lie that is blind to their own violent histories.

For me, “Columbus Day” represents “Freedom Day from Hypocrisy and Lies.”

 Let’s hold every ethnic and racial group to the same standard of justice and principle, which by the way is also one of the foundations of Democracy that the fanatics are seeking to change.


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