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Stop celebrating Columbus Day!

October 6, 2008

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Columbus Day is just 1 week away. On this day responsible citizens take a much needed break from work or school, applaud the parades that march down city streets, and shop “Columbus Day” sales.

Very few get that Columbus day is an outdated holiday that celebrates genocide and slavery. Our country does not celebrate the internment of Japanese Americans during the Second World War with 50% off sales. School children do not get a day off to commemorate global warming. We certainly don’t parade around our streets to celebrate the US history of slavery. So why do we honor a man who once wrote in his journal that the indigenous peoples he first set eyes on would make great slaves????

To this day, public school children are taught about Native American culture and history from the point of view of Euro-American colonialists. Unfortunately this kind of education is extremely biased and untrue. Many of us continue to be bereft of knowledge regarding true Native American history as well as the current lopsided relationship between the US government and Indian Country. This kind of ignorance will be played out in full revelry next week.

I just recently found out that South Dakota is the first and only state to abolish the holiday and instate a Native American day instead. A glimmer of hope!

On October 13th, do what South Dakota does. Deem October 13th a day of remembrance for the Native Americans who have lost their lives and celebrate the strong Native culture that persists today. It would also be a good day to write letters to your representatives and ask them to abolish this foolish holiday. Then write letters to the editor of your newspaper and plea that your community start looking at ways to spend the 3rd Monday of October in more reverent ways (e.g. educate people and urge leaders to respect the sovereignty and rights of Native Americans)

And happy Native American Day.

One Comment leave one →
  1. October 12, 2011 3:27 pm

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