Abbreviated pundit round-up: Columbus Day at 81; hijacking the House; 2nd Amendment history faked

E.J. Dionne Jr. at The New York Times writes—How Kevin McCarthy predicted his own demise:

One group was not surprised by the collapse of Kevin McCarthy’s campaign for speaker: the ultraconservatives inside and outside the House who have made clear since the rise of the tea party that they have no use for politics as usual.
They have always been upfront: Anyone who believes that President Obama poses a grave threat to our constitutional rights — and that Republican leaders have sold out conservative principles for decades — has no choice but to throw sand into the gears of government. For them, governing with Obama means furthering the collapse of the republic. […]

Republicans have a big choice to make about what kind of party they are. But they’re most likely to keep papering over their divide with psychobabble about “healing.” This won’t work. Just

John Boehner. Or Kevin McCarthy.

Sabrina Joy Stevens at The Progressive writes—Why Columbus Day Should Be A Front In The Progressive Fight For Public Education:

Near the beginning of every school year, one of the creation myths that upholds a White-dominant narrative of the Americas is Columbus Day. Each year, we as educators, parents, and community members face a choice: Will we use this day as an opportunity to empower students by delving into the complexities of our country’s past and present, or will we let Eurocentric nostalgia overshadow the truth?
A growing number of teachers have started to complicate the traditional “In 1492/Columbus sailed the ocean blue” line on Columbus. Some school districts, such as my own in Maryland, no longer take the day off in Columbus’ honor. Some cities and districts, such as Seattle, are taking a step beyond that by opting to observe Indigenous Peoples’ Day in honor of those who were already here, instead of the person who helped initiate several centuries of genocide against them.

But for our country as a whole, the day remains on the calendar, though most regard it as a day off to shop and hold parades. Many conservatives, on the other hand, often undermine any attempt to restore the Taínos’ narrative of history. They paint the organizing done by Native Americans and their allies as a “politically correct” assault on Italian-Americans’ heritage and American history as a whole.

For instance, an effort to declare Indigenous People’s Day narrowly failed in Oklahoma City. And the debate over whether the day should be Indigenous Peoples Day or Columbus Day has become a yearly observance on Fox News since at least 2010, when a commentator there declared that it was time to “Take back Columbus Day.” True to form, the folks at Fox believe that America should stop being “guilty” about the accomplishments of European explorers, and bask in our “commitment to the life-serving values of Western civilization: reason and individualism.” The fact that said civilization was built upon the large-scale slaughter and exploitation of others is apparently not worth dampening the celebration.

More pundit excerpts and links can be found below the fold.

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