Re "Let's settle Columbus debate" (Forum, Oct. 13): The opinion that Columbus was a hero for "discovering" the Americas perpetuates a error repeated so many times in classrooms that it has become a legend that won't die. Italian Americans can be proud of Columbus as a great explorer but he did not discover America. He discovered "the Americas" only if you consider the Caribbean the "Americas."
The first European to set foot on what is now the East coast of Florida was Spaniard Ponce de Leon. He was a great explorer himself and was part of Columbus' second sailing.
Columbus can be hailed as proving the world was not flat and heralding in the great exploration and colonization of North, South and Central America. He did not, however, "discover America."
-- Kimberly Husted, Gold River