Undiscovering history takes us down a perilous path

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Goodbye Columbus: First it was a film, now it's a movement. Go figure. (Courtesy image)

Columbus Day.

A holiday that used to be defined as a day to celebrate the discovery of America is now a time when Americans are supposed to discover their guilt-ridden past.

But the American Indians, Native Americans and Indigenous Peoples I've come to know over the years have never represented to me any abiding acrimony they carry around with them against America or Americans.

It is said time heals all wounds, and more than 500 years after the first Europeans set foot on the shores of America and 150 years since Custer's Last Stand, well, that should be enough time, don't you think?

The story of America's move west - steeped and quantified in its Manifest Destiny - was part of a mosaic born of immigrations from Western and Eastern Europe, Asia and cultures from around the world, even including the slave trade from Africa.

Now that there is this hue and cry by certain factions calling for the holiday to be renamed Indigenous Peoples Day, the first thing I have to do is look up "indigenous," which is defined as "originating or occurring naturally in a particular place."

However, incontrovertible research proclaims that Native Americans didn't occur naturally in the Americas, but migrated from Eastern Asia walking across the former Bering Land Bridge now known as the Bering Straits that separate Alaska from Siberia. That's right, Native Americans are just an earlier wave of immigrants. So do we know whether or not there were any indigenous folks here when they arrived? No, but certainly it's possible. And what happened to them, exactly?

So, is there anybody who is truly indigenous, who "occurred naturally?"

Maybe if you hang around long enough after killing off those there before you, you can get classified as indigenous, too. Or maybe it's just the oldest wave of immigrants still standing.

That migration from Northeast Asia took place about 23,000 years ago.

Maybe in another 23,000 years when aliens from another planet down the galaxy a bit take over Earth, we'll all cry foul, protest in the streets, throw bricks at police spaceships and fight for our rightful "indigenous" status.

Another reason why we have to build a wall around Earth.

Do you know what the opposite of "discover" is? "Cover up."

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