Today I am so thankful for LA's vote to replace Columbus day! This change is following a discussion that is increasing important for us to hear and think about. This conversation is not only about Christopher Columbus, it's about culture. It's the same argument for why confederate monuments need to be addressed.
If we are to tell a story of America's founding, we need to tell the entire story. Before emancipation from Britain, an estimated 34,000,000 people were slaughtered between 1492–1691. That began when Christopher Columbus set sail for India but landed in Haiti and started violently slaughtering civilizations around the Caribbean in pursuit for gold. He also never stepped foot in North America. Yep. Look. It. Up.
To celebrate America without first realizing that there was a 200 year war with the existing civilizations of natives is a injustice to future citizens. We cannot choose what we want to remember and ignore the perspectives of others because their realities don't fit into our box of the ideal form of America.
To so many people, Christopher Columbus was a brutal murder who generated a trend of ruthless irreversible damage and destroyed centuries of culture. What kind of message are we teaching future generations by giving people like this Holidays? By giving confederate soldiers who fought for slavery statues?
What one may see as a symbol of pride, another is seeing as a symbol of oppression.
Now is the time to recognize history and become educated about Americas past. And by changing the name of this holiday to Indigenous Peoples Day we are acknowledging the millions of daughters, sons, mothers, and fathers who were forced to give up their lives for us to have this America.
Thank you LA City Council!
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