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Green Pastures 018 - GP018.TXT
13/Mar/1997

In this issue 018:

"God is my copilot. But as a navigator he sucks."

Christopher Columbus still has his many spin-doctors and, as the truth about Columbus becomes accepted and the myths and legends are slowly dispensed with, I prophecy we shall start seeing vocal denials of Columbus' Christianity. Like the hundreds of thousands of Crusaders and "Pro-lifers" before him, Columbus is destined to join the ranks of the "Not TRUE Christian."

In the next issue 019:

"History revisionism Christian style: Denying Adolf Hitler."

What are the words of Adolf Hitler in regards his religious beliefs? What are the explanations of fellow religionists in response to Hitler's religion?

Green Pastures takes a look at the phenomena of the history revisionism which deny Adolf Hitler's religion and explores the explanations offered by fellow religionists for his agenda of genocide. Commentary solicited from a broad spectrum of religionists include the denial that Christian hate groups across the world are in any way Christian organizations.

God is my copilot. But as a navigator he sucks.

"Slight of hand and twist of fate" - U2

Normally we guys and gals don't bother expending the time to correct the "mistakes" we find in Creationist publications mainly because Creationist literature doesn't contain anything new which hasn't been debunked both soundly and routinely over the past ten decades or so. Few of us feel the need to debunk comic books -- or those who mistakenly believe in them.

Aside from the humor content Creationist literature provides, few of us have either the time or desire to review even summations of such nonsense. For those of us in the computer networks, we see the sad results of such strange religious beliefs in the illiterate and unscientific postings of our poor fellow Creationist netizens; Creationists who can't even acknowledge Tectonic Plate displacement, Continental Uplift, simple biology, or the age of the Solar System for fear of violating their religious beliefs and blaspheming their gods.

We know what religion can and does do to otherwise rational, thinking human beings. We don't waste our time.

Sit back in your chair and imagine my delight when I was asked to review a specific Creationist devotional, published in the Institute for Creation Research's "Impact" publication, and to offer comment upon it -- from none other than the author himself! It's quite an honor, I assure you. I'm giddy with anticipation, in fact.

This issue of Green Pastures contains a copy of the original "Impact" article, replicated fully intact and unmodified. While you read it you'll be tempted to shake your head and skip forward -- yet give it a chance, okay? Mr. Humber's efforts are serious and he deserves to have us "infidel sinners" listen with an open mind.

After it's done I'll pick up again and provide a lengthy and detailed coverage of the many errors and omissions. I'll then provide some of the references I used to collect the information used. When I'm done, I'll give the floor back to Mr. Humber for the final word.

"Try to hold on, trying to hold on; Keep the faith" - Bon Jovi

    Institute for Creation Research,
    PO Box 2667, El Cajon, CA. 92021
    Voice: (619) 448-0900
    FAX: (619) 448-3469
    Number 220, 1991  (File IMP-220A.ARJ at The Skeptic Tank)

Columbus and His Creator by Paul G. Humber *

Copyright (c) 1991 by I.C.R. All Rights Reserved

* Mr. Humbar, A.B., M.S., B.D., is a schoolmaster at The Haverford School, Haverford, Pennsylvania. __________________________________

Some years ago, the _Philadelphia Daily News_ published a cartoon characterizing Christians who hold to the fundamentals of the Bible as out of touch with reality. As an educator, I found it particularly offensive. Sammy, standing on the Bible in a classroom with his back to the others, was looking at a flat "globe" of the earth. The other students and teacher, with quizzical looks on their faces, encompassed a normal (i.e. round) globe. The teacher, presumably responding to a student's question, is depicted as saying, "Because Sammy's mom is a fundamentalist, that's why." [1] The intent seems to be to ridicule Bible-believing Christians and their view of science. Apparently neither the cartoonist nor the editors realized that Christopher Columbus, a round-earth activist of the highest degree, was driven far more by the Bible than by the science of his day. A dedicated student of the Scriptures, he put his faith into action.

COLUMBUS' OWN WORDS:

At last, after almost 500 years, _Libro de las profecias_ (Book of Prophecies), written and compiled by Columbus, may be seriously considered in English! In her _Christopher Columbus -- His life and discovery in the light of his prophecies_,[2] Kay Brigham has provided translations of major portions and analysis of his book. She describes it as "a compilation of passages from the Bible which the Admiral believed were pertinent to his mission of discovery, selected by Columbus himself with the help of his friend, Fray Gaspar de Gorricio."[2] Excerpting from folios 4-6 (using her book as source), I quote Columbus, who in turn was addressing his Spanish sovereigns:

"At this time I have seen and put in study to look into all the Scriptures, cosmography, histories, chronicles and philosophy and other arts, which our Lord opened to my understanding (I could sense His hand upon me), so that it became clear to me that it was feasible to navigate from here to the Indies; and He unlocked within me the determination to execute the idea. And I came to your Highnesses with this ardor. All those who heard about my enterprise rejected it with laughter, scoffing at me. Neither the sciences which I mentioned above, nor the authoritative citations from them, were of any avail. In only your Highnesses remained faith and constancy. Who doubts that this illumination was from the Holy Spirit? I attest that He (the Spirit), with marvelous rays of light, consoled me through the holy and sacred Scriptures ... encouraging me to proceed, and, continually, without ceasing for a moment, they inflame me with a sense of great urgency....

I am the worst of sinners. The pity and mercy of our Lord have completely covered me whenever I have called (on Him) for them. I have found the sweetest consolation in casting away all my anxiety, so as to contemplate His marvelous presence.

I have already said that for the execution of the enterprise of the Indies, neither reason, nor mathematics, nor world maps were profitable to me; rather the prophecy of Isaiah was completely fulfilled ....

Your Highnesses, remember the Gospel texts and the many promises which our Savior made to us, and how all this has been put to a test: (for example) St. Peter, when he leapt into the sea, walked upon (the water) as long as his faith remained firm. The mountains will obey anyone who has faith the size of a kernel of Indian corn. All that is requested by anyone who has faith will be granted. Knock and it will be opened to you. No one should be afraid to take on any enterprise in the name of our Savior, if it is right and if the purpose is purely for His holy service .... The working out of all things was entrusted by our Lord to each person, (but it happens) in conformity with His sovereign will, even though he gives advice to many. He lacks nothing that it may be in the power of men to give him. O, how good is the Lord who wishes people to perform that for which he holds himself responsible! Day and night, and at every moment, everyone should give Him their most devoted thanks."[2]

Noted author, Simon Wiesenthal, in his _Sails of Hope_, confirmed earlier what is now clear from Columbus' own writings:

"That religious elements played a great part in Columbus's thoughts and actions is evident from all his writings. It may come as something of a surprise to us that his concept of sailing west to reach the Indies was less the result of geographical theories than of his faith in certain Biblical texts -- specifically the Book of Isaiah."[3]

COLUMBUS - A SCOUNDREL?

William Loren Katz, though affirming Columbus' "enormous skills, courage and ambition," added that "Columbus carried in his heart the burning embers of hate" and repaid the "generosity" of the natives with "treachery."[4] Others have similar concerns.

Sadly, exploitation of peoples and lands followed in Columbus' wake, and Columbus himself contributed in part. His own testimony of being "the worst of sinners" has already been mentioned, but he also viewed himself as "Servant ... of the Most High Saviour, Christ the Son of Mary."[5] He trusted apparently in Creator Jesus who forgives the sins of repentant sinners. Indeed, he named the very first island he landed on San Salvador out of regard for his "Holy Savior" (translation).

The esteemed Harvard historian, Samuel Eliot Morison, who dedicated a copy of his Pulitzer Prize-winning book, _Admiral of the Ocean Sea_ to his "shipmate," Lieutenant Commander Millard J. Klein, Kay Brigham's father,[2] was more generous in his appraisal of Admiral Columbus. He wrote, "I cannot forget the eternal faith that sent this man forth, to the benefit of all future ages."[6] Columbus sought the conversion of the natives. On the premise that people are lost without Christ, such a concern could be interpreted as an expression of genuine love rather than of hate. He prayed on San Salvador:

"O Lord Almighty and Everlasting God, by Thy holy Word Thou hast created the heaven, and the earth, and the sea; blessed and glorified be Thy Name, and praised be Thy Majesty, which hath deigned to use us, Thy humble servants, that Thy holy Name may be proclaimed in this second part of the earth."[7]

According to Morison, Columbus and his family were different from many of the others who wanted "to get gold quick and go home." Only Columbus, "his family and a few faithful, humble souls" cared for establishing a 'permanent settlement" and the transfer of Christianity to the Indies.[6]

Morison was not unaware of some of Columbus' shortcomings, but he also wrote of his "humanity:"

It was to Columbus' credit that humanity prevailed over glory. It must have been a temptation to parade this brilliant savage royalty with their gold and feather ornaments at court. But he thought of the cold weather in which they would suffer and die, of what the pretty daughters might expect from his seamen, of the disillusion that would await these innocent souls in Castile. So he took compassion on them, declined the cacique's request, and sent the Indians ashore in the ship's boat after receiving their homage and fealty.[6]

Kay Brigham's assessment of Columbus is very positive: "On account of faith -- ``being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see'' (Hebrews 11:1) -- Columbus discovered America, the most significant event for the human race after the birth, death, and resurrection of the Savior of the world. Faith liberated Columbus from the chains of human myopia, launching him on a divine mission and propelling him to a providential destination ... initiating the histories of the United States, Canada, and the numerous American Republics and the phenomenal expansion of the Christian faith."[2]

WHAT BIBLE PASSAGES AFFECTED COLUMBUS?

Scriptural passages cited by Columbus in his book, _Libro de las profecias_ (Book of Prophecies)[2] include the following:

The LORD reigneth, let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of isles be glad thereof (Psalm 97:1).

Sing unto the LORD a new song, and His praise from the ends of the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the isles, and the inhabitants thereof (Isaiah 42:10).

Listen, O isles, unto Me; and hearken, ye people from far (Isaiah 49:1).

My righteousness is near; My salvation is gone forth .... The isles shall wait upon Me, and on Mine arm shall they trust (Isaiah 51:5).

I am sought of them that asked not for Me; I am found of them that sought Me not; I said, Behold Me, behold Me, unto a nation that was not called by My name (Isaiah 65:1).

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world (Matthew 28:19,20).

But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and you shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth (Acts 1:8).

CONCLUSION:

"Columbus always loved to apply the Sacred Scriptures to his own life and adventures,"[6] according to Morison. Wilbur E. Garret, _National Geographic_ Editor, shares that this was also true at his death: "Son Ferdinand reports that Columbus repeated the words attributed to Christ on the Cross -- 'Into your hands, Father, I commend my soul' - and died."[8]

REFERENCES

1. _Philadelphia Daily News_, October 28, 1986, p. 33.

2. Brigham, Kay. _Christopher Columbus - His life and discovery in the light of his prophecies_. Terrassa, Barcelona: CLIE Publishers, 1990, pp. 53, 61, 82, 85, 86, 115, 124, 125, 127, 129, 131, 167.

3. Wiesenthal, Simon. _Sails of Hope_. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1973, p. 122.

4. Katz, William Loren. "'Ill Winds' Drove Columbus," _The New York Times_, October 8, 1979.

5. Morison, Samuel Eliot. "Christopher Columbus, Mariner," _American Heritage_, December 1955, p. 93.

6. Morison, Samuel Eliot. _Admiral of the Ocean Sea_. Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1942, pp. 6, 206, 476, 494.

7. Marshall, Jr., Peter J. and David B. Manuel, Jr. _The Light and the Glory_. Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1977, p. 41.

8. Garrett, Wilbur E. "Columbus and the New World," _National Geographic_, November 1986, p. 564.

"Now I'm a believer" - The Monkeys

Quite an inspirational piece! I laughed, I cried... It _moved_ me. Quite obviously Christopher Columbus had God as his copilot _and_ navigator. All of us atheist sinners should be damn thankful that Columbus was a Bible-believing Christian who discovered America by the grace of God otherwise we might all still believe the Earth is flat!

Equally obvious is the totally unwarranted comic depiction by that horrible "Philadelphia Daily News" which tried to equate contemporary Creationists with flat-Earth believers! Shame on them!

If any of us are _still_ atheists after reading this, you just weren't paying attention. Go back and _read_ it this time!

"It's Deja vu all over again" - Yogi Berra

Oh. After reading it the second time I think I see some very minor mistakes; honest mistakes that anyone stuck on a flat Earth might make.

        "Apparently neither the cartoonist nor the editors realized
        that Christopher Columbus, a round-earth activist of the
        highest degree, was driven far more by the Bible than by the
        science of his day.  A dedicated student of the Scriptures,
        he put his faith into action."  [27a]

- Humber

The Greeks had known the Earth was round for at least 1900 years before Christopher Columbus set sail to find a "Westward Passage to India." [1] The Greeks had known the Earth was a sphere and had been calculating the approximate size of the Earth since at least the third century. Eratosthenes of Cyrene, Chief librarian of the famous "Library at Alexandria" in the third century, devised and used straight sticks and fairly simple geometry to come to some pretty good estimates on the size of the Earth. [27d]

During the Summer Solstice the Sun reflected off the water at the bottom of wells in Syene, telling him that the center of the Sun was directly in line with the center of the Earth from the Syene radian. By observing the Sun from Alexandria at the same time, he could tell that the Sun was some 7.2 degrees away from the vertical. That's 1/50'th of a full circle and, with the assumption that rays of light travel parallel to each other, he multiplied the North/South distance between Syene and Alexandria by 50 to come to within 15% of the actual size of the Earth.

The Greek's world wasn't flat. Eratosthenes would have used different geometry calculations if he had thought the Earth was flat. Pythagoras and Aristotle before him knew the Earth was a sphere. Educated people of Europe, Spain, and Portugal all knew that the Earth wasn't flat.

In actual fact Christopher Columbus _rejected_ the knowledge that the Earth was a sphere in favor of the belief that the shape was egg like with curves "Like a woman's breast." He was soundly ridiculed for that belief. ("Where," Rev. David Rice wondered aloud, "did Columbus suppose the nipples were?") He was ridiculed because the educated _knew_ the Earth was round and Columbus religiously believed otherwise. (My seven-year-old son Stephen reports that he and his classmates are told that Christopher Columbus believed the world was "eggplant shaped" -- something a little more "politically correct" than mentioning women's breasts to giggly school children.)

Columbus also thought that the circumference of the Earth was _much_ smaller than it actually is, even though there had been scientific evidence as to the Earth's actual circumference for centuries. [2]

What was the reason for Columbus to deny well over 190 _decades_ of proven scientific knowledge? The scientific knowledge was "pagan," not "revealed" knowledge and as such must by necessity be false. (More on this religion-biased belief later.)

Does Mr. Columbus' reasoning sound familiar to anyone? Does his rejection of scientific facts in favor of religious ignorance ring any bells? Columbus died never accepting the scientific fact that the Earth is an oblate spheroid or the scientific fact of the size of the Earth -- even though he himself evidenced his own beliefs mistaken! Hundreds of thousands of Creationists go to their graves in contemporary times not accepting the fact of evolution even though they themselves directly observe the process. Indeed, the reason they don't accept evolution is because they have no idea what evolution is. [23]

Columbus wasn't the first to reject the scientific facts known by "pagans" for centuries. In the sixth century Christians officially demanded that the Earth was "flat rectangle" shaped. [28]

Why does Mr. Humber suppose Christopher Columbus was "a round-earth activist of the highest degree?" Columbus wouldn't accept that the earth is a sphere due to his religious beliefs. I can only guess that Mr. Humber was either taught this in school else this is what the "scientists" over at the Institute for Creation Research have been selling to their believers.

But then there's another "minor" problem.

        "Kay Brigham's assessment of Columbus is very positive:
        `On account of faith -- ``being sure of what we hope for
        and certain of what we do not see'' (Hebrews 11:1) --
        Columbus discovered America...'"

- Humber.

My best guess is that on the flat Earth, Columbus discovered America. For those of us who live on the round Earth, however, America was visited by both the Vikings [3] and Irish seamen at least 500 years [4] [5] before Columbus "discovered" South America. [6a] [6d]

Mr. Humber probably shouldn't be faulted for this mistake since it's one of the most widely-disseminated historic fallacies in the United States. There is a fairly large effort under way around the world to make the history text books reflect the actual history of Columbus and his activities in the New World yet it's a difficult process simply because the myths and legends are so ingrained in world-wide belief and, more importantly, the true history of Columbus is that of a bloodthirsty slave trading tyrant. [6c]

Displacing Columbus' position as top dog and installing Irish sailors is going to take some time. Even so, the Irish Monks who were here first _deserve_ official recognition. [6b]

Open your encyclopedia and you'll most likely be informed that Christopher Columbus "discovered" Central America in 1502. If your encyclopedia is anything like Grolier's, you'll also be told that Christopher Columbus "discovered" America in 1492. My very own encyclopedia [7] was published in 1948 -- a great many years before current "politically correct" school texts started appearing in the public schools. Though it covers some of Columbus' bloodthirsty exploits, it, too, mistakenly states that Columbus "discovered" America. [27b]

While a growing number of public school teachers are starting to cover the earlier explorations of North, Central, and Southern America, the vast majority of the American adult population still labors until these mistaken beliefs. Correcting the record will take decades. [8]

As I mentioned before, my youngest son is getting the correct history of the "discovery" of the Americas. Every year, in fact, during Columbus Day, students around the country are getting the history of Columbus with the addendum that others were here before him. [9] [10] Text books intended for High School students are also beginning to cover the facts concerning who really "discovered" the Americas as well as what indigenous cultures were destroyed by Columbus and the fellow Christian monsters who followed. [11] Christians who are willing to admit the evil of Christopher Columbus and their own Church are starting to speak out (rather belatedly) and ask the survivors of the cultures their cult plundered for their forgiveness. [12]

"You want the truth?! You can't _handle_ the truth!" - Jack

And that brings up another "minor" mistake:

        "I quote Columbus, who in turn was addressing his Spanish
        sovereigns:

``At this time I have seen and put in study to look into all the Scriptures, cosmography, histories, chronicles and philosophy and other arts, which our Lord opened to my understanding (I could sense His hand upon me), so that it became clear to me that it was feasible to navigate from here to the Indies; and He unlocked within me the determination to execute the idea.''

No one doubted that sailing from Spain to India was possible. It was a question of sailing into the _setting_ sun to reach India, not a question of making it to India from Spain -- something the Spanish had been doing for centuries by sailing into the _rising_ sun.

            ``Who doubts that this illumination was from the Holy
            Spirit?  I attest that He (the Spirit), with marvelous rays
            of light, consoled me through the holy and sacred
            Scriptures... encouraging me to proceed, and, continually,
            without ceasing for a moment, they inflame me with a sense
            of great urgency....''"

- Humber

Running into South America was a mistake. Columbus, using the "hand" his "lord" gave him, mistakenly thought he had reached India and he called the domestic populations he enslaved "Indians" because of it.

Why didn't this "lord" inform him that the Greek's estimate of the circumference of the world was the correct one? Why didn't this "lord" tell him to stop fixating on women's breasts and accept that the world was a sphere -- as the Greeks had known for centuries? Why did this "lord" of his lie about there being a western passage to India?

Obviously us atheists would never worship a lying god -- why do Creationists? Isn't it immoral to worship a god who lies?

            "The intent seems to be to ridicule Bible-believing
            Christians and their view of science."

- Humber

Scientific method has no "view," Mr. Humber. Scientific method also doesn't have anything to do with religious beliefs -- or _any_ venue of belief. Electrons don't _care_ if you believe in them or not. Gravity will work for you regardless of whether you accept its existence or not. The world is either an oblate spheroid else it is shaped like a woman's breast! There is no "view" when it comes to science. There is the closest approximation to truth possible and when set against the testable claims of Creationists, science proves their beliefs wrong (every time, in fact) -- there is no "view" about it!

There is most certainly acceptance and denial, of course. There is most certainly a round world for most of us and a flat one for those among us who need one.

As for ridiculing Creationists, we're _supposed_ to laugh at clowns, Mr. Humber. Even those who elect to live on a flat Earth.

"Do it in the name of Heaven, you can justify it in the end" - Coven

And where would the traditional Creationist devotional be without a healthy dose of apologetics designed to bypass the embarrassing inhuman tyrannies instigated against innocent people at the behest of inhuman monsters who justify their acts using the Christian deities?

            "Columbus sought the conversion of the natives.  On the
            premise that people are lost without Christ, such a concern
            could be interpreted as an expression of genuine love
            rather than of hate."

- Humber

Yes, Christopher Columbus would be quite welcome among the Humanist groups around the country today. He was quite the humanitarian who did all he could to bring the indigenous Indian populations nearer to God -- by murdering a quarter of a million of them. [14] All for their own good, of course; all out of love for his victims. When done for God in Heaven, all is justified in the end.

In actual fact this "expression of genuine Christian love" _was_ exactly in keeping with the bloody history of Christianity and in keeping with Columbus' own time. Dr. D. Stannard covers the actual history of this tyrant in "American Holocaust," Oxford University Press, 1992.

        "On every island he set foot on, Columbus planted a cross,
        ``making the declarations that are required'' - the
        requerimiento - to claim the ownership for his Catholic
        patrons in Spain.  And ``nobody objected.''  If the Indians
        refused or delayed their acceptance (or understanding),
        the requerimiento continued:

``I certify to you that, with the help of God, we shall powerfully enter in your country and shall make war against you ... and shall subject you to the yoke and obedience of the Church ... and shall do you all mischief that we can, as to vassals who do not obey and refuse to receive their lord and resist and contradict him.'" [15]

- D. Stannard

"The key to my survival was never in much doubt" - Genesis

"... Lost without Christ..." Yet murdered and enslaved _with_ Christ. Keeping in mind that Christopher Columbus was an artifact of his own time, following the Christian ideals of his own age, I can't bring myself to place the whole of the blame upon him. The society which felt it was better to slaughter innocent people if they wouldn't convert to Christianity was what made Columbus the inhuman tyrant he was -- And what allows the most bloodthirsty cult ever created to survive to today.

Dr. D. Stannard comments further upon the slaves that Columbus took:

        "Within hours of landfall on the first inhabited island
        he encountered in the Caribbean, Columbus seized and carried
        off six native people who, he said, ``ought to be good servants
        ... [and] would easily be made Christians, because it seemed
        to me that they belonged to no religion.''"  [16]

"While Columbus described the Indians as ``idolaters'' and ``slaves, as many as [the Crown] shall order,'' his pal Michele de Cuneo, Italian nobleman, referred to the natives as ``beasts'' because ``they eat when they are hungry,'' and made love ``openly whenever they feel like it.'' [17]

- D. Stannard

People who know the history of this bloodthirsty tyrant also note that Columbus so decimated his own crew that he often _required_ slaves to operate the ships under his command. Slaves which survived the return trip were pressed into the services of Spain's demonic sugar industry -- the 1500's equivalent of the cocaine trade today. (More on this slave trade later.)

Mr. Humber's audience consists of Creationists who only believe what they are told to believe. They're also not supposed to learn anything they're _not_ told. In the event any of his intended believers hear rumors as to the truth about Columbus, Mr. Humber has the bases covered:

        "Sadly, exploitation of peoples and lands followed in
        Columbus' wake, and Columbus himself contributed in part."

- Humber

"...contributed in part." On every one of Columbus' voyages he enslaved as many native Indians as could fit on his ship. [18] On his second voyage Columbus, after accidentally running his ship aground, set up shop in Haiti and Santo Domingo, using dogs trained to kill, to slaughter nearly every man, woman, and child. [19] There was no attempts at "conversion;" there was only genocide for the express purposes of seizing innocent people's lands. Columbus called these lands "Hispanola" and he so decimated the populace that his son Diego and fellow Christian slave traders were _forced_ to fan out into the Caribbean in search of more slaves who lands they could plunder and who citizens they could murder.

The Christian slaughters were so total that Columbus successfully obliterated at least three known civilizations. The Arawak, [24] Carib, and the Taino didn't manage to survive Columbus' "contribution in part" as Mr. Humber calls it.

        "According to Morison, Columbus and his family were
        different from many of the others who wanted ``to get
        gold quick and go home.''  Only Columbus, ``his family
        and a few faithful, humble souls'' cared for establishing
        a 'permanent settlement''' and the transfer of
        Christianity to the Indies.""

- Humber

"...transfer of Christianity..." Is that what they're calling genocide these days? In any event this is a lie. Columbus instituted "the encomienda system" specifically to plunder the wealth of the West Indies as quickly and as profitably as possible. [20] He slaughtered so many domestic slaves that fellow Christians had to repeatedly request officially that he "take it easy" otherwise there would be shortages of slaves to run the sugar plantations. [21] After filling his ships (which could hold 500 slaves) he left the remaining slaves to his crew who raped, tortured, then murdered them. [22]

Why didn't Mr. Humber mention the _rest_ of Morison's 1955 review of the history of Christopher Columbus? Did the Samuel Morison of the flat Earth forget to include these pages? Mr. Humber seems to have been reading a version of Morison's book quite different than the version here on the round world.

As for how Columbus had no interest in raping these people of their gold, perhaps that may have been true on the flat Earth yet here on the round Earth, gold and slavery were his primary concerns:

        "As soon as I arrived in the Indies, on the first Island
        which I found, I took some of the natives by force in order
        that they might learn and might give me information of
        whatever there is in these parts."

The information Columbus wanted most was: "Where is the gold?" He had persuaded the king and queen of Spain to finance an expedition to the lands, the wealth, he expected would be on the other side of the Atlantic -- the Indies and Asia, gold and spices. [25]

In fact Columbus was promised 10% of the profits from the lands and people he raped -- including 10% of the slaves he managed to bring back to Spain alive. [26]

        "Hispaniola is a miracle.  Mountains and hills, plains and
        pastures, are both fertile and beautiful... the harbors are
        unbelievably good and there are many wide rivers of which the
        majority contain gold..."

"There are many spices, and great mines of gold and other metals..."

[The Indians] "are so naive and so free with their possessions that no one who has not witnessed them would believe it. When you ask for something they have, they never say no. To the contrary, they offer to share with anyone...."

He concluded his report by asking for a little help from their Majesties, and in return he would bring them from his next voyage "as much gold as they need... and as many slaves as they ask." [27c]

Why doesn't Mr. Humber relate to his Creationist readers _any_ of this? Is this yet further history revisionism on the part of demonic Christians wishing to deny the history of what they have done for their deity constructs? Or was Mr. Humber simply totally ignorant about what he was speaking of? It's undeniably certain that his intended audience buys whatever they read in their occult tracts, of course, no matter how outrageous. The only question is whether these hugely important omissions were intended to deceive or whether Mr. Humber is honestly ignorant.

"Heros don't come easy. Nonsense isn't new to me..." - R.E.M.

And does Mr. Humber even recognize the hatred and inhuman bigotry that drove his hero Columbus? I doubt it.

        "Indeed, he named the very first island he landed on
        San Salvador out of regard for his ``Holy Savior''"
        (translation).

- Humber

And just _fuck_ the fact that the people he enslaved and slaughtered and the cultures he decimated already had names for their own countries.

To conclude the irony, let's take a good look at this hero.

        "``Columbus always loved to apply the Sacred
        Scriptures to his own life and adventures,''"

Boy, that's certainly undeniable, brothers and sisters. The bloody history of Christopher Columbus certainly proves he was indeed a Christian carrying forth in the true spirit of Christianity. How long will it be before fellow Christian fundamentalists start denying it?

References

Paul G. Humber "responds" to the embarrassing truth:

As promised, I solicited response from Mr. Humber which I agreed would be appended to this article unedited and complete. Since he's a Creationist, however, the "response" received was as expected: There was not even an attempt to address the lies, deceptions, dishonesty, or any of the scientific and historical misconceptions found among his religious rants. There were further statements of occult religious beliefs yet there was no attempt to address the issues.

Indeed, it's almost as if his request for me to provide a write-up of his Impact article was a deceptive ploy to try to waste my time. He certainly seems to have had no interest in actually reading it. The result of the exercise, however, remains of benefit for all of us who fight against such lunacy: Here is a teacher tasked with educating children. Horribly, he's also a Creationist.

        Date: Fri, 21 Mar 1997 09:39:02 -0500 (EST)
        From: Paul Humber 
        To: Fredric Rice 
        Subject: Re: Green Pastures

Thank you for sending a response to my article. I would be happy to receive a hard copy if such exists. I know very little of the Green Pastures publication. My address is Paul G. Humber, Upper School Faculty, The Haverford School, 450 W. Lancaster Ave., Haverford, PA 19041.

Regarding the over 500 pages of materials you sent giving examples of organisms going from one species to another, I found the consideration of such things as bacteria and fruit flies unconvincing. A fruit fly with or without wings is a fruit fly, etc. I do not deny variations with survival benefit (microevolution). I am looking for one example on the macro scale.

I now better understand your objection to my calling atheism a religion. I came accross the statement in what you sent, "Every religion is a cult." Since you probably consider yourself an atheist, you would not want to see yourself as a cultist. You strongly object.

Let me commend you for your zeal. I believe it is very misguided (as you think me misguided), but you surely put in a lot of energy and time.

-------------------------------|* Paul G. Humber, Philadelphia |* phumber@mciunix.mciu.k12.pa.us |* -------------------------------|*

Copyright Notice and Such

Green Pastures is copyright protected by Fredric L. Rice of The Skeptic Tank. Written March of 1997. All rights are reserved. You may freely distribute this article or fragments thereof. The opinions expressed within are the sole opinions of Fredric L. Rice. frice@skeptictank.org.

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