indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439
Dynamic Homes
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Opinion: Why Natives must reject Columbus Day
Friday, October 5, 2007
Filed Under: Opinion

"In Colorado, we know something about Columbus Day. We have been working for the past 18 years to dismantle this anti-Indian celebration. Columbus Day was born in Colorado in 1907, the first state to designate the holiday. Over the past 18 years, we have learned a lot about Columbus Day - its origins, its true meanings and its importance to U.S. identity and persistent anti-Indian racism.

As a national holiday, Columbus Day has virtually nothing to do with honoring Italian heritage or culture, and it is not about celebrating mutually held values of decency, respect or justice. Columbus Day celebrates two critical developments integral to the establishment and advancement of the United States. First, it celebrates invasion and domination, especially of indigenous peoples' territories; second, and much more importantly, it celebrates the invention and the legal institutionalization of the ''doctrine of discovery.''

Columbus Day has become the U.S. holiday that celebrates the imperialist redemption of America from Indian ''savagery.'' Johnson v. M'Intosh becomes the necessary legal reinforcement to salve the conscience of America for the theft of a hemisphere. Columbus Day has become the mask that allows America to pretend that it can justify the taking of other peoples' homelands. Luther Standing Bear wrote in 1933 that ''The man from Europe is still a foreigner and an alien. And he still hates the man who questioned his path across the continent.'' The United States has created Columbus Day to rationalize its historical crimes against indigenous peoples.

If Native people do not challenge the fundamental premise of the ''doctrine of discovery,'' as celebrated every year through Columbus Day, then the racist foundation upon which all federal Indian law and policy is constructed will remain intact. We see the ideology of domination carried to this hemisphere by Columbus playing out every year all over Indian country. We see it in the level of Indian incarceration, in the loss of religious freedom cases, in Indian child welfare cases where non-Indian courts ignore the law, in treaty cases where the United States ignores international standards, in international practice where the United States voted against the adoption of the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and in the Cobell trust fund case where the United States refuses to account for tens, if not hundreds, of billions of dollars that are owed to Individual Indian Money trust accounts."

Get the Story:
Glenn Morris: How Columbus Day harms American Indians (Indian Country Today 10/5)

Another Opinion:
Editorial: Columbus fray no holiday (Indian Country Today 10/5)

Relevant Links:
Transform Columbus Day - http://www.transformcolumbusday.org

Related Stories:
Column: AIM outdoes itself on Columbus Day again (10/3)
Editorial: Another Columbus Day parade upon us (10/1)
Haskell students lead Columbus Day protest (10/10)
Opinion: Celebrating Colmbus condones genocide (10/9)
Protest planned for Columbus Day parade in Denver (10/3)
Debate: Transform Columbus Day or treasure it? (9/28)
Column: Bad Eagle supports Columbus Day parade (9/27)
Comanche man to perform at NMAI despite critique (9/26)
Scalia leads Columbus Day parade in New York (10/11)
Columbus Day parade, protest turn out peaceful (10/10)
Another Columbus Day parade and protest in Denver (10/7)
Colorado AIM offers deal on Columbus Day parade (10/04)
Denver mayor 'sick and tired' of Columbus Day protest (9/29)
Column: Columbus Day is only a parade for protesters (01/28)
Column: Columbus Day protesters overreacting (1/27)
Editorial: Law should protect Columbus Day parade (1/26)
Columbus Day parade likened to cross-burning (1/26)
Denver forced to end Columbus Day protest cases (1/25)
Column: Columbus Day parade is not 'hate speech' (1/25)
Denver won't drop case against Columbus protesters (1/24)
Columbus Day protesters acquitted in Denver (1/21)
Natives changing perspective on 'Indian' holidays (11/10)
Opinion: Be proud of Wal-Mart, and Columbus too (10/15)
Letter: Indians better off thanks to Columbus (10/14)
Native students don't celebrate Columbus Day (10/12)
Column: Columbus ignored as Natives persevere (10/11)
Editorial: It's that time of the year (Columbus Day) (10/08)
Column: It's wrong to compare Columbus to Hitler (10/07)
Columbus Day protesters seek day in court(1/14)
Were terrorists plotting on Columbus Day? (10/17)
Columbus Day not a celebration for all (10/15)
Letters: Columbus Day marches and more (10/15)
Another year, another Columbus Day (10/14)
You can't stop the Italians! (10/11)
It's Columbus Day, Be nice to the Italians! (10/10)
Editorial: Be nice to the Italians (10/9)
Another year, Another Columbus Day (10/7)
Columbus Day events given permits (7/17)
Cost of Columbus Day topping $100,000 (10/9)
Italians to boycott Columbus Day (9/19)
Columbus Day started in Colorado (9/10)
'Columbus' may be dropped from parade (8/29)
Event is not Columbus protest, says group (7/17)
Columbus Day battle brews (7/12)
Italians celebrate Columbus Day early (7/11)
Group awarded Columbus Day permit (7/10)
Peaceful protest greets parade (10/9)

Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:

Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Tribal college geologist tackles uranium mine (1/30)
James Giago Davies: Let's hurry up and hate the Muslim people (1/30)
Luis Alejo: Apologize to the Chumash Tribe for 'hurtful' remarks (1/30)
Mark Anthony Rolo: Declaration of war against Keystone Pipeline (1/30)
Senate passes bill to approve controversial Keystone XL Pipeline (1/30)
DOI signs land buy-back cooperative agreements with two tribes (1/30)
Company claims harassment after racial incident at hockey game (1/30)
Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes declare war on methamphetamine (1/30)
Warm Springs Tribes play host to unmanned drone test grounds (1/30)
Eastern Cherokees still working to improve dangerous highway (1/30)
Key lawmakers remain opposed to Yucca Mountain nuclear site (1/30)
Kootenai Tribe: The truth about the regulation of Indian gaming (1/30)
Mike Hoeft: Bingo games brought Oneida Nation together again (1/30)
Menominee Nation won't give up on off-reservation gaming plan (1/30)
Keweenaw Bay Indian Community approves casino market study (1/30)
Seminole Tribe wins preliminary approval for New Jersey gaming (1/30)
Native Sun News: Alcohol a common factor in Rapid City murders (1/29)
Ivan Star: Ignoring alcoholism leads to destruction of the Lakota (1/29)
John Barrasso: Empowering Indian Country in the GOP Congress (1/29)
Criminal charges possible over mistreatment of Indian students (1/29)
Seneca Nation doesn't foresee taking action on legal marijuana (1/29)
Elderly member of Colville Tribes seriously injured in hit and run (1/29)
Fifteen charged over theft of Yakama Nation scholarship money (1/29)
Judge orders self-proclaimed 'shaman' back to custody in Texas (1/29)
Nevada City Rancheria objects to leasing of land to another tribe (1/29)
Mississippi Choctaws to hold grand opening for new $55M hospital (1/29)
Opinion: Celebrate the Native origin of the Seattle Seahawks logo (1/29)
First Nations Experience to grow with $6M from San Manuel Band (1/29)
Governor won't rethink Menominee Nation off-reservation casino (1/29)
Cayuga Nation back in court to defend Class II gaming operation (1/29)
Mohegan Tribe reports increase in revenue at gaming enterprise (1/29)
Gaming machines at non-Indian tracks stir controversy in Idaho (1/29)
Native Sun News: Tribes ask Obama to deny Keystone XL permit (1/28)
Native Sun News: Native youth take stand against Keystone bid (1/28)
Tara Houska: Respect treaties and reject Keystone XL Pipeline (1/28)
Mark Trahant: Obama administration steps up for environment (1/28)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee holds first meeting & hearing (1/28)
House committee won't restore Indian and Alaska Native panel (1/28)
Opinion: Affordable Care Act offers behavorial health services (1/28)
Sami Jo Difuntorum: Support needed for Indian housing update (1/28)
Albert Bender: Stop glorification of Indian killer Andrew Jackson (1/28)
Amanda Blackhorse: Navajo leader defends racist NFL mascot (1/28)
Megan Red Shirt-Shaw: Our kids should be able to go anywhere (1/28)
Police probe racist treatment of Oglala youth at hockey game (1/28)
College basketball player proud to serve as Native role model (1/28)
Auburn Community buys stake in rock music festival company (1/28)
Former Pueblo leader ready to change plea in $3.6M theft case (1/28)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.