Photos Courtesy of Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images and Cal State LA
Columbus Day or Indigenous People’s Day?
To Be or not to be. That is the question. Should it be a day that truly reflects the discovery or should it not? What is the true history of the discovery of America? Many of us have read in American History books in school that Columbus sailed the ocean blue and discovered America in 1492. However, history scholars estimate that more than 50 million people were already living in the Americas at that time. Of these, some 10 million lived in the area that would become the United States. According to these historians, these people were the Nomadic ancestors of the indigenous people. Therefore, how do we honor this important discovery and day? How do we honor the truth and teach the truth to not only America, but to the world? Maybe Columbus discovered for European ancestors the land that was already discovered by our indigenous brothers and sisters. So, should there be a Columbus Day to commemorate when the United States of America recognized this land? Then a celebration of Indigenous Day for the discovery of the land itself?
This is important to teach truth to our students. But it is more important to give honor where honor is due. That is not to say that Columbus did not make a discovery, but that those that were here before should be recognized as the first pioneers of this land.