indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439
Native American Bank - Native people investing in Native communities
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:
White House to host first-ever Native youth conference on July 9 (4/24)
Native Sun News: Northern Cheyenne Tribe fires casino manager (4/24)
Lakota Country Times: Timothy Standing Soldier passes on at 54 (4/24)
Mark Trahant: Invest in our Native youth for long-term success (4/24)
James Giago Davies: True believerism and comic book solutions (4/24)
Brandon Ecoffey: Oglala Sioux Tribe must act on legal marijuana (4/24)
Ed Rice: Cleveland team comes up with excuse for racist mascot (4/24)
White House Blog: Recognizing tribal Climate Action Champions (4/24)
House subcommittee looks at poor conditions at Indian schools (4/24)
Navajo actress was put in darker makeup for Adam Sandler film (4/24)
Eastern Cherokee group plans lawsuit over tribal council raises (4/24)
Column: Commission takes on truth and reconciliation in Maine (4/24)
Senate votes to confirm Loretta Lynch as next attorney general (4/24)
ICT interview with confirmed NIGC Chairman Jonodev Chaudhuri (4/24)
Dave Palermo: Tribes in California assert right to Internet poker (4/24)
Pokagon Band casino remains a concern for Indiana lawmakers (4/24)
Pojoaque Pueblo places casino manager on administrative leave (4/24)
White Earth Nation promotes tribal members in casino positions (4/24)
Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux student vies for Miss Indian World (4/23)
Lakota Country Times: Tribal citizens named to education board (4/23)
Ivan Star: Struggling with the warrior heritage in Indian Country (4/23)
Dana Lone Elk: Lakota people still carry on fight of Crazy Horse (4/23)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee passes bill to renew NAHASDA (4/23)
BIA faces fire over latest reforms to federal recognition process (4/23)
Opinion: First Lady brings truth with remarks about Native youth (4/23)
Incoming leader of Navajo Nation stresses importance of youth (4/23)
Native actors storm off set of Adam Sandler film in New Mexico (4/23)
Marijuana seen as new frontier in tribal economic development (4/23)
Senate approves anti-trafficking measure with tribal provisions (4/23)
Interview with Gyasi Ross about spoken word release Isskootsik (4/23)
Blackfeet Nation launches campaign to ban drilling at sacred site (4/23)
Cherokee Nation celebrates births of first calves from bison herd (4/23)
Burns Paiute Tribe investigates fire that destroyed two bulidings (4/23)
Kaibab Paiute Tribe welcomes designation as 1st dark sky nation (4/23)
University of Minnesota sees surge in Native student enrollment (4/23)
Editorial: Minnesota tribes work together to address treaty rights (4/23)
Editorial: Maine governor fails to treat sovereign tribes as equals (4/23)
Brazil to host inaugural World Indigenous Games this September (4/23)
Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation probes woman's death at casino (4/23)
Tohono O'odham Nation vows defense for off-reservation casino (4/23)
Seminole Tribe talks with lawmakers about Class III casino deal (4/23)
Editorial: State needs assurances from Quapaw Tribe on gaming (4/23)
Native Sun News: Tribes take DOI to task over grizzly bear policy (4/22)
Native Sun News: Lakota rodeo legend Howard Hunter passes on (4/22)
Bill John Baker: Cherokee Nation language programs are working (4/22)
White House Blog: Improving the lives of Native American youth (4/22)
Bob Gough: Indigenous people most affected by climate change (4/22)
Duane Champagne: Indigenous accommodation for colonialism (4/22)
Audio from Senate Indian Affairs Committee on transportation (4/22)
Navajo Nation voters choose Russell Begaye as next president (4/22)
Appeals court sides with Indian inmate in religious rights case (4/22)
Kashia Band interested in timber not marijuana on new lands (4/22)
Kaw Nation to return to ancestral land in Kansas for ceremony (4/22)
Moapa Band to host Further Future music festival next month (4/22)
Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe runs into opposition to fish hatchery (4/22)
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.