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: Violence against Native women is on the rise (10/24)
Morgan Howard: Corporate dividends confict with Tlingit values (10/24)
David Wilkins: Abandon the Doctrine of Discovery in Indian law (10/24)
Navajo Nation candidate Chris Deschene won't halt campaign (10/24)
Tribes receive $1.2M in Sovereignty in Indian Education funds (10/24)
Language preservation a top issue as AFN opens annual meet (10/24)
Rep. Don Young to speak to Alaska Natives amid controversy (10/24)
Think Progress: South Dakota county suppresses Native vote (10/24)
Opinion: Tribes turn their acumen to Internet lending industry (10/24)
Chickasaw Nation signs compact with state for license plates (10/24)
Federal judge won't be removed from Miccosukee Tribe's case (10/24)
Radio: NPS allowed destruction of tribal burial mounds in Iowa (10/24)
BIA announces intent to put Cowlitz Tribe gaming site in trust (10/24)
Feinstein opposes North Fork Rancheria off-reservation casino (10/24)
Salt River Tribe arrests man who left children in casino garage (10/24)
Closure of Chukchansi Tribe's casino could affect contributions (10/24)
Opinion: Shinnecock Nation's casino plans remain under cloud (10/24)
Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux Tribe heads to election season (10/23)
Al Caroll: Recognize tribal sovereignty in new US Constitution (10/23)
Michael Baines: Senate candidate battles Alaska Native rights (10/23)
President Barack Obama urges early voting for Alaska Natives (10/23)
Ho-Chunk Nation woman named president of Girl Scouts board (10/23)
3rd Circuit won't force town to repatriate Jim Thorpe's remains (10/23)
Navajo Nation's top court orders new ballots without candidate (10/23)
Alaska Federation of Natives ready to open annual convention (10/23)
Alaska governor to sign Native languages bill six months later (10/23)
Rep. Don Young blames government 'largesse' for suicide rate (10/23)
Washington player says tattoo represents Cherokee heritage (10/23)
Crow Tribe seeks renewal of Indian Coal Production Tax Credit (10/23)
Native advocates come together to combat domestic violence (10/23)
Agua Caliente Band and DOJ submit briefs in water rights case (10/23)
Former health executive from Chippewa Cree Tribe sentenced (10/23)
Final person sentenced in theft from Blackfeet Nation program (10/23)
Opinion: Tribes exploit loopholes in America's political system (10/23)
Otoe-Missouria Tribe announces plans for new gaming facility (10/23)
Rival leaders of Chukchansi Tribe to meet amid casino closure (10/23)
Navajo Nation challenges lawsuit over death of casino patron (10/23)
Law Article: Judge restricts BIA authority in Class III dispute (10/23)
Column: Election won't end North Fork off-reservation casino (10/23)
Eyapaha Today: Oneida singer follows in mother's footsteps (10/22)
Native Sun News: Candidate seeks investigation into program (10/22)
Ivan Star Comes Out: Lakota people disrespect our language (10/22)
Cedric Sunray: Standing together to fight tribal disenrollment (10/22)
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.