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Christopher Columbus statue
The Christopher Columbus statue is shown at Manhattan's Columbus Circle, Sunday Aug. 27, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Christopher Columbus XX told Americans 'my ancestor didn’t cause your failings'


Christopher Columbus’s descendant says that the explorer is not responsible for America’s social ills.

“History has some truly evil people,” Christopher Columbus XX wrote in a USA Today op-ed Monday. “Columbus is certainly not one of them.”

“Those who now question Columbus conveniently ignore the fact that slavery, cannibalism, warfare and even human sacrifice all existed in the Americas before even sailed,” he added in the piece titled “Hey America, my ancestor didn’t cause your failings.”

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“Even so, some today blame Columbus for everything they dislike in U.S. history, despite the ample evidence that he was a moderating force on his men, and the fact that he sought to keep good manners and friendly relations with Native Americans.”

Some Twitter users on Monday debated the merits of Columbus XX’s defense of his ancestor on Columbus Day.

Columbus sailed across the Atlantic Ocean in 1492, ultimately reaching an island in what is now the Bahamas.

The voyage proved essential for opening the New World to Europe and establishing contact between Europeans and Native Americans.

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Former President Benjamin Harrison established Columbus Day in 1892, the 400th anniversary of Columbus’s landfall in the Americas.

CNN reported in 2014 that 16 states do not recognize Columbus Day as a public holiday after it began being celebrated on the second Monday in October in 1971.

Some Americans have since begun observing “Indigenous Peoples’ Day” on the same date in honor of the New World inhabitants Columbus encountered and their modern descendants.

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