Berkeley celebrates 25 years of Indigenous Peoples' Day

Randolph Lopez
October 10, 2017

In 2014, the Seattle City Council unanimously voted to stop celebrating the voyage of Christopher Columbus and turn the second Monday in October into a day of recognition of Native American cultures and peoples.

The mayor will march in the Columbus Day Parade along Fifth Avenue, while the commission he set up to review statues will hold its first meeting later this week.

The notion of an Indigenous Peoples Day took root at an worldwide conference on discrimination sponsored by the United Nations in 1977.

However, not everyone in Utah is happy about it.

They're told that Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas, leading to colonies on this side of the pond. The city renamed Columbus Day as "Indigenous Peoples' Day" in the beginning of 1992. When native populations were all but extinct from disease, the trans-Atlantic African slave trade was ramped up to fill this slavery void.

A new survey shows that nearly six in 10 Americans, or 57 percent, believe that celebrating Columbus Day is a "good idea", while only 29 percent oppose the holiday. The resolution that was passed stated that it wants to teach the Native Americans history in schools.

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"We need to take these statues down because we don't need to be constantly reminded of our oppressors and the bad history so we need to take these statues down", Juan Aguirre, one of the people protesting, said.

Republican mayoral candidates Nicole Malliotakis said: "We can not forget that Christopher Columbus was the one who connected two sides of the world".

"The reason this broad re-evaluation is happening right now is because for most of the past 150 years-while a revolution was occurring in the way most Americans perceive race-there was also an absolute refusal to seriously reconsider how we remember these historical figures", he said.

"To celebrate somebody like that just seems disrespectful to the people that he tried to take advantage of", the Memphis senior said.

Columbus Day is celebrated not only by the United States, but also Spain, which supported the Columbus expedition, Italy, Colombia (named for Christopher Columbus), several other South American nations, and some Caribbean islands. Indigenous people had been living there for centuries by the time Columbus arrived in 1492.

"The motion, let me be clear, is not about erasing history", said Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis, who announced the motion earlier this month, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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