Back in Philadelphia, where there are tons of Italians and almost zero Native Americans, Columbus Day is a big deal. School is out, banks and government offices are closed, there's even a parade. Here in Seattle, not so much.

It's a weird holiday, jam-packed with cognitive dissonance. On the one hand, America! On the other hand, genocide. As a descendent of Eastern European Jews who escaped a subsequent genocide in the Old World by seeking refuge in the lebensraum made available by the post-Columbus genocide in the New World, I've got mixed feelings about this day to say the least.

You gotta at least give Columbus credit for having the balls to do what he did, but it was helluva lot easier to celebrate Columbus Day before we started teaching American history truthfully.