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Columbus in its due place

Dedicated to my great-grandfather Achille Toti, promoter of positive colonization and to the Colon en su lugar Committee ( Columbus in its due place ) we all have fought since 2013 so that his statue is not removed in Argentina


Decades ago in 1969, the Apollo 11 mission reached the lunar surface and astronaut Neil Armstrong took that small step that would be huge for humanity.


I cannot help but draw a parallel with the Genoese sailor who discovered the new world and who not only represents the Italian spirit but also the very essence of the human person.


Among so many black legends they made us buy the belief according to which the majority population of the Middle Ages believed in the theory of the flat earth that rested on a giant turtle, today we know that this was not medieval thought but the narrative of the novelist Terry Pratchett at the end of the 1800…


It is true that when two human groups unexpectedly come together with such dissimilar histories (in this case thousands of years old) conflicts arise, in this case there is no record of the Genoese Admiral taking part in them and we (all of us who love the search for historical truth) do not fall in labeling Columbus as a genocide, since there is no evidence that he killed any person, much less in a deliberate attempt to exterminate a people and its culture.


Columbus, perhaps a converted Christian with Jewish ancestry, knew how to sell his project to Their Catholic Majesties Fernando and Isabel as a good entrepreneur and, I repeat, represent not only the Italian spirit but the very spirit of the human person who longs to be a pioneer, to know, to discover, to travel, to expand and to leave the comfort zone.


The motto of the Spanish empire “Plus ultra” (beyond) pointed out to me by my friend Mario Chiesa, from the Columbus in his place Committee founded by Ruben Granara Insua (RiP), represents the importance of going further and daring to go to the very ends of the universe.


This is the impulse that we should have again as a society, that of the hopeful Columbus who, trusting in Divine Providence, did not dedicate himself to judging history comfortably, toppling statues or elaborating bizarre and violent ideologies masked as activisms.


That Buenos Aires belle epoque monument dedicated to Columbus and to legal immigrants, a metaphor for the aforementioned ''Plus ultra'', was not understood, on the contrary, it was taken as a symbol of war and not of peace and liberation that shows its marble where it is observed in the prow of the ship the breaking of the chains of ignorance and the domination of the great Indian empires over the subject tribes.


For many today the earth is flat, Columbus committed genocide and man did not step on the moon.


In this sense, both the moon and the new continent remind us of what we are capable of when we aspire high and move away from mediocrity, in the words of John F. Kennedy in 1962:

"...We choose to go to the Moon. We choose to go to the Moon... We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win, and the others, too..."

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