In the former, a prominent commentator recently reported what he learned from the work of the “heroic historian” Edmund Morgan: namely, that when Columbus and the early explorers arrived they “found a continental vastness sparsely populated by farming and hunting people … In the limitless and unspoiled world stretching from tropical jungle to the frozen north, there may have been scarcely more than a million inhabitants.”
The calculation is off by tens of millions, and the “vastness” included advanced civilizations, facts well known to those who choose to know decades ago. No letters appeared reacting to this truly colossal case of genocide denial. In the companion London journal a noted historian casually mentioned the “mistreatment of the Native Americans,” again eliciting no comment. We would hardly accept the word “mistreatment” for comparable or even much lesser crimes committed by enemies.
For more on the subject, see Descendant Excuses Columbus's Crimes and Textbooks Neuter Columbus Critiques.
Below: Noam Chomsky. (Ben Rusk/Flickr)