In Defense of Columbus: An Exaggerated Evil

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Knowing Better : The President 42 years ago was not LBJ. Thanks to /u/scottsmith46 for pointing that out.

Real Engineering : Seriously impressed with the amount of research that went into this. Your point on intent was interesting, would like to hear your take on the Irish famine. Lots of people in Ireland, including myself, have called it a genocide. This is the first time I have really questioned that because of your points.

palomdude : "If we can pin 400 years of awful history onto one guy, it shifts all of the guilt for what happened to the native americans away from the rest of us." I think this quote explains a lot.

Escorpion Venenoso : Adam Ruins His Credibility

angonlu329 : I hate how we judge historical figures by modern standards

Bryan Haynes : These kind of videos make me so upset. Not at the guy making them, good on him for doing all this amazing research, but at the blatant lies that people will create and repeat. Such as the Servant quote that was completely changed to fit their agenda. It’s sickening, you can’t trust anything you read or listen to or watch anymore. Thank god their are people like this who will do an immense amount of research just to get the truth out.

Mr. Beat : Check out those sources, folks. This dude does not mess around.

imagede zach : Good video, but seriously consult a linguist or philologist for the stuff regarding language, because using multiple bad translations (Google translate included) doesn't not necessarily give a good understanding of the original text.

Miguel Fernández : As a spanish, I only see Colombus as a explorer that happened to discover (for europeans) america, something that had to happen sooner or later. He just wanted to create a new spice route. I don't understand the controversy. You americans have a serious problem with him, I'm glad this video exists.

deadfishbrohoof : TLDR: History is complicated and has been corrupted by alot of different people to suit their own agendas

DrNerdRage : Adam ruins everything is a certified knuckle dragging dolt. His entire show is built around strawmen he can easily knock down.

KristenLucasSoprano : Colombus bravely set sail upon the great pear boobie.

CHEEJOEKAY : I was shocked at the title, but after watching the video I am glad I did. Your video was great. Although Im critical of Columbus I did feel like Adam Conovers video was misleading and thats without me knowing all of the context you explained. We need more Youtube channels like yours that try to be objective and give context to complicated things.

StripedTiger : Sounds like Columbus is American history's greatest scapegoat.

Juan Alberto Vargas Mesén : I'm sorry, but you shouldn't probably use Google Translate, like, at all. It's a good overall guidance, but won't tell you nuance (or lack thereof) any better than a translation. There's another problem: this is very old Spanish, which I doubt Google handles very well. I struggle a bit in trying to understand what it says (and I'm a native Spanish speaker), but some parts are very plain. From what I can tell it says the following: "[something I don't understand]... when you commanded so, they can all be taken to Castille, or have them captive on the same island. Because with fifty men [I/you?] could have them all subjugated: and [I/you?] will have them do everything [I/you?] want." I remember having read this before, and if I remember correctly, when he says "you" he was addressing the Queen. I also have my doubts with the word "sojuzgado" because it sounds archaic and it's very similar to the word for "judged" (as in a trial), however, the Dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy does say it means "to dominate with violence". So yeah, even if translation is slightly changed, it does sound just as awful. Edit for clarification: other than that, those are very interesting points.

FireBirdTheEpic : The Vikings actually did continue to use the waters by Newfoundland to fish for many years. They were just not interested in fighting with the Natives so they kept away. Aside from that, good video!

Limey Lassen : Huh. I came into this with an axe to grind, but ended up with shaken confidence in Adam Ruins Everything.

wet timguavass : America and the USA are two different things.

Shii Jei : Can't agree with the viking point. Just because they didn't care or realize that they found a new land mass doesn't mean they didn't find it.

coulie27 : Good stuff, but for all the work you put in, you got lazy on breaking down the translations. Can do better than Google Translate!

horsemeattball : "History is the fable that everyone believes to be true"...I think it was Voltaire (I may be wrong). That's how I view history nowadays.

Matthew Lee : How to conquer an entire continent. Step 1: sneeze on one of the locals Step 2: wait a year

Will Lawrence : "They were forced to work against their will, but NOBODY owned them!" LOL

teresaguerrasalazar : US citizens think that Native Americans are the original people of the United States and Canada only. I went to Europe and the Greeks believe that too. when I went to Greece they did not know that either. I'm Zapotec and Tarahumaran from Mexico. Native Americans are the original people of the entire Continent from the Bering Strait to Tierra del Fuego. The US has imposed its name as America in Europe when referring to the US, they say America. That is totally wrong. America is the entire continent, we the people of the Spanish speaking countries reject the US wanting to claim America name for themselves. All the citizens living in the American Continent are Americans. We mexicans are indigenous Americans, original to the American Continent. Mexico is the cultural center of the American Continent, cradle to one of the 7 ancient mother cultures of the earth.

LemonArsonist : Overall I agree with your point but I think you've swayed too far to the "Columbus was okay" side of the pendulum. And the use of small snippets from short videos containing true but ambiguously phrased sentences is no evidence at all. They had a point to make, they made it in the most succinct way they could (see pear-shaped earth. That's what he was describing! He just didn't use the word pear, so your argument against is was basically pointless.) To state Columbus was bad in basic terms to an audience who celebrate a whole day in his honour is to try push the pendulum to the middle so people don't have the even more wrong "Columbus was amazing" story.

mrfuriouser : "Adam" ruins every subject he touches...with false info and half-truths. He just sucks.

Chris Meyer : Wait, wtf you only have 2k subs? How is that even possible. I have no doubt you are breaking 100-200k within 6 months if you keep putting out this level of quality video. Great stuff man. Keep it up.

Jordan : The video continuously tries to soften what happened. I'm really not understanding what the difference is between a peasant that has been forced into subjugation to work for free, versus a slave. If you were that peasant would you really be saying thank goodness I'm not a slave because I can't be sold. I guess they should be thankful that they have management stability since they can't be sold.

TheDarkrebel131 : i like how he just brushes offthe " yea he probably cut of native hands and noses to but the queen and king didn't care."

joshuaoha : I'm not really sure I get the point here. You say you can't credit the viking with discovering America, but you can Columbus even though he never landed on the continent and still thought he was in islands off the coast of Asia. You seem to argue at first he wasn't so bad, but then admit he did brutalize people. The guy WAS brutal. His men recorded about raping and killing. You say he didn't think of the natives as slaved, but then say he kidnapped people and took them back to Europe. Are you just trying to be a contrarian? You can be an apologist for him by saying "oh, he just lived in a different time" but why try to white wash history? Fuck Columbus and fuck Columbus day.

Boris Kocmaruk : guns germs and steel amiright?

Elsenoromniano : Some corrections, "You can't really have large cities without domesticated animals". Well, you can, and we know that, because Aztecs certainly did have large cities, the estimated population of Tenochtitlan was a city of 200.000 (Smith, 2005), which is on par with the size of Paris during the same timeframe, and only third the population of the largest city in the timeframe (Beijing, with over 600.000, Morris, 2010). Second, I am Spanish and I know historical SPanish, he really does say "they are ingenious and good servants", that is exactly the literal translation of those words in 1500'ish Spanish. And also yes he says " With 50 men I could have them subjugetaed and I could make them do what I would want", using google translate is very, very lazy. You could have asked someone with knowledge of Spanish. "Subjugate" (O "Sojuzgar in Spanish) is actually the same as conquer, it means to be under someone yoke or metaphorically, be under someone's power, usually by force. Another mistake, the Encomienda system was a later invention, at first they were slaves and they were sold and bought, that is not weird, because Spanish people already practiced slavery (it was ok to enslave enemies of the faith, Muslim enslaved Catholics and Catholics enslaved Muslims. The Encomienda system was introduced around 1505,a s a way to treat the natives better and also gain the support in a lot internal conflicts. It must be said that the encomienda system was already abolish time ago in Castille. Also to note is that in 1509, the Crown gave the order to make encomiendas non permanent, although people with encomiendas or "encomenderos" found a lot of ways around that. The slavery of the natives under any ground was not forbidden until 1530 under the reign of Carlos the V. Also the reason was not "he was extracting to much Gold", the reason he was thrown in jail was that it was believed that he stole gold from the Crown. Also Colombus threw Bobadilla, which was the designated governor by the Crown and thus disobeyed orders from the Crown. So his punishment was for mutiny and stolen funds, not because he was extracting less gold than expected. Part of the investigations done by Bobadilla and subsequent judges had one of the points of contention if Columbus deny some baptizes because of religious zeal (he wanted the natives to be fully prepared for the baptism) or for economic gain (you couldn't turn Christians into slaves, as soon as a native was baptized, he couldn't be a slave, it was the same rule that applied to moorish slaves). Also of importance, because you omitted it and it kind of gives the wrong impression of Las Casas,. las Casas later recanted his views about black slavery, lamented his role in the initiation of the Slave trade and tried very unsuccessfully to fight against the importation of black slaves. Saying that De las Casas advocated the slavery of blacks without giving the information that later in his life fought against it seems like you tried to paint him in a bad light just because he was anti-Columbus. But in fact, if you know the whole story that makes him more admirable, because he was able to change his views in an era where the view that all humans were equal was certainly not the norm. Also, while it's true that he didn't travel with Columbus, he was an historian among other things and he certainly interviewed people that traveled with COlumbus, it's not like he fabricated everything from whole cloth. So I know this is a long text, but I tried to be the fairest possible and only point mistakes to better the understanding of the topic. Columbus was not a monster, but certainly, even for the people in his time he was a dodgy character.

Thomas Clark : Sooooo subjugating someone is more positive than conquering them? In my mind they are both the same thing.

Kurt Richter : "While paling in comparison to his crimes against Caribs and Taino Indians, Columbus's rule over Spanish settlers was also brutal. He ordered at least a dozen Spaniards "to be whipped in public, tied by the neck, and bound together by the feet" for trading gold for food to avoid starvation. He ordered a woman's tongue cut out for having "spoken ill of the Admiral and his brothers."

Nashib Farooqi : "The vikings didn't discover America first. They stumbled on it looking for timber, stayed for a year, and then left". Technically they did discover America. Just because you leave doesn't mean you haven't discovered something. Even if they had stepped foot on American land for 5 minutes and left, technically they would still have discovered it without knowing.

moonlington : As somebody who speaks italian and has studied Columbus at a University level, you are so, so dumb. So many mistakes, mostly subjective arguments, and misinterpretation throughout.

Diego M : Bro, I would have put a like on your video, but I think you posture too much about your knowledge on the whole, and it seems you are taking the stance of an expert. I certainly dislike that. Too much apologizing atrocities of the empire, of colonialism, and you are a bit too biased in your “translation.” Making it seem that subjugation has nothing to do with colonization. And just because there weren’t as many people here after the 90% collapse of an entire population did that mean it was just anyone’s land. It is a tragedy beyond the scale the world has seen since or before and you act as if the plague was just as bad. It would have been just as bad if an invasion would have come after the plague and exterminated European culture, history, art and the people in it. What happened to the Americas is horrifying and you don’t really seem to understand that. That bothers me.

Kaul is I : Wow it really helps your argument that you trust google translate's translation of 15th century Italian over a scholar's translation. And saying that "good servants" could also mean servants of god or the crown, not just slaves, makes you sound like you think forced conversion and annexation aren't problematic.

Wesley J : Columbus partook in the enslavement, murder and butchery of indigenous people. The fact that other historical figures did it too doesn’t absolve him. We shouldn’t have a federal holiday named after him and there’s nothing wrong with having an indigenous people’s day

CFITOMAHAWK : Bunch of lies on these video. I speak and can read Spanish, Portuguese and some italian too. This guy things you cant. I can: For example- On minute 16:08 I can read clearly dam Columbus VERY clearly wrote that with 50 men he could SUBJUGATE these people and make them do as i please. The guy on the video says that word is not there. Another lie of many on this video. This guy is one of those italians people hate, they are like Columbus. Dam liars and cheaters.

koth : Tbh, 550 years ago, the goal for tribes and empires was to expand. The Native American tribes that succeeded, succeeded for a reason. They were savage in their colonizations. When Columbus came to the Americas, he was just expanding an empire using techniques just as savage as the Native tribes, but with better technology and more people.

Bob Sass : Charlemagne, the "Butcher of the Saxons", the man behind the Massacre of Verden, and the forced conversion (and murder) of many free Germanic tribesmen in the name of his ambition.

Gonzalo Paredes : 15:36 It sayss in spanish; "They must be good servants and ingenious or gullible, (nnot sure), for the do everrything you tell them"thwn goes on to talk how theyd convewrt easily. Next he say "I could subjugate them all with fifty men, and make them do whatever I want"So yeah he did pretty much saw them as free labourers, yeah potential slaves. Nothing more

Martin Booth : Something important about the columbus slavery point Columbus was Catholic and Catholics didn't enslave Christians because it says so in the bible, not to mention the Pope at the time had written letters and created legislation he demanded all of christendom to not take slaves from the new world but to convert them, again christians couldn't own fellow chrisitians this is why surprisingly south african boers were some of the first to free african slaves due to them converting to Christianity

garret morris : We need more people like you who can accurately and being unbiased depict history. As most people like to sell something, to make people emotion. The sad thing is that most people accept anything from anyone that has a popular reputation, so no one cares to do the research themselves. And i believe that this is a major problem in this world. As people just assume that what they hear on the news is correct, forming they're opinions. There's zero free thinking nowadays, most everyone gets their opinion from a popular publication or from the media.

trudatism : So u are saying that people just pick and choose when its come to translation but u r translating 1500s spanish and italian through google translator and presenting just part of the translation. I get that Colombus was off when it comes to navigation to new world, but what he did to native for justify his mission to new world to Spanish crown was inhumanly cruel. The source that based on actual accounts not came from columbus but those who were around him. This kind of knit picking of a genocidal chapter of native american is fucked up!!

Janet Jongebloed : I hate Adam Ruins Everything. I knew he was bullshit, but this is such a beautiful refutation.

wet timguavass : Just in of many domesticated animals the natives had .....More than 1,500 years before Christopher Columbus and his crew sailed to the New World, Native Americans had already domesticated turkeys twice: first in south-central Mexico at around 800 B.C. and again in what is now the southwestern U.S. at about 200 B.C., according to a new study.Feb 1, 2010

GD PolarBunny : "I'm going to kill a black kid today." -Knowing Better

Joey : I love when Adam ruins everything is debunked