Columbus Day Quarrel: Columbus Day or Indigenous Peoples Day?

A movement to abolish Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples Day is gaining momentum across the country.

Los Angeles recently became the biggest city yet to stop honoring the Italian explorer. Austin, Texas, followed suit last week.

But the gesture to recognize victims of European colonialism has also outraged Italian-Americans.

They say eliminating their festival of ethnic pride is culturally insensitive.

The debate over Columbus' legacy is an old one, but it became emotionally charged after a similar debate in the South over monuments to Confederate generals flared into violence at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

One attempt to dump Columbus Day in Akron, Ohio, opened a racial rift on the city council.

In New York City, where 35,000 people will march in Monday's Columbus Day parade, vandals recently doused a Columbus statue in red paint. 

A wreath-laying ceremony at a New York statue of Christopher Columbus the day before the Columbus Day holiday was been interrupted briefly by demonstrators speaking out against honoring the Italian explorer. Two of the three protesters were dressed in fake chains. One wore a hooded white sheet. They spoke out before being escorted away Sunday. The New York Police Department says one person was arrested.

 

© 2017 Associated Press


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