Letters to the Editor

Letter: Rename Columbus Day

To the Editor:

Although Christopher Columbus discovered America and opened up a whole new world to the rest of the world, we should rename Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day. We should recognize and honor the Indigenous people who are the true American people instead of celebrating Christopher Columbus’ discovery since Christopher Columbus harmed so many innocent Indigenous people.

According to Howard Zinn, author of A People’s History of the United States, states that Bartolomé de las Casas claims “[t]he Spaniards "thought nothing of knifing Indians by tens and twenties and of cutting slices off them to test the sharpness of their blades.”” This indicates that Christopher Columbus and his people didn’t care for the Indigenous people and harmed them for no reason.

The fact that Christopher Columbus harmed so many Indigenous people shows that Christopher Columbus was a horrible person and that we should not celebrate his discovery of the land that would eventually become the land of the United States of America. Even though some may argue that what Christopher Columbus did to Indigenous people was normal at the time, he still took many innocent people’s lives which is wrong no matter the time in history.

According to Russell Means and Glenn Morris, of the American Indian Movement, believe that “Columbus could not, and did not, ‘discover’ a hemisphere that was already inhabited by nearly 100 million people, his arrival cannot, and will not, be recognized as a heroic and celebratory event by indigenous peoples…From an Indigenous vantage point, Columbus' arrival was a disaster from the beginning.”

This indicates that Christopher Columbus didn’t discover America and a reason why we should not celebrate “his discovery of the United States of America.” Instead, we should take the time and recognize the Indigenous people. Honoring the Indigenous people and their history should take precedence over honoring Christopher Columbus.

Changing the name of Columbus Day is acceptable because it is outrageous how we Americans celebrate one who killed thousands of innocent people who inhabited this land first.

Dane Justesen

Prairie Ridge

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