Columbus day event draws supporters and protesters in Pueblo

Columbus day event draws supporters and protesters in Pueblo

Columbus day event draws supporters and protesters in Pueblo

As an Italian American it feels good that there is an official holiday that is nominally about us.

"Today we celebrate Native American communities, & the pride & resilience of people reclaiming their history & traditions". So, the city chose Veterans Day.

But instead of citing politics or the growing movement to embrace Indigenous Peoples' Day, the mayor's office said budget was to blame; the city doesn't have funds to give 8,500 employees the day off for two federal holidays.

For the first time, Columbus, Ohio didn't celebrate Columbus Day, and many cities and states are now celebrating Indigenous peoples day or Native American day to replace Columbus Day. Indigenous people had been living there for centuries by the time Columbus arrived in 1492.

"Columbus is home to 110,000 veterans", Davis said in an email to NPR. "We thought that was something that was important".

"I appreciate that for many people, including some Italian-Americans, the celebration of Columbus is viewed as belittling the suffering of indigenous peoples at the hands of Europeans".

O'Farrell was principal sponsor of legislation the council passed previous year designating the second Monday of October as Indigenous Peoples Day in place of Columbus Day in the nation's second-largest city.

The mayor's office announced the decision in a brief, unceremonious news release Friday, avoiding the politics that have traditionally accompanied changes to the controversial federal holiday in other cities.

Although Spain sponsored his voyage, Columbus was, in fact, a proud citizen of the Italian City of Genoa. "How stupid of Mayor Ginther to perpetrate this embarrassment for our City!"

"It's not PC for me to say anything against indigenous peoples", he told the Associated Press. "I would much rather see Veterans honored".

New York Daily News via Getty Images A statue of Christopher Columbus is defaced with red paint in New York City's Central Park.

Last year, Los Angeles became the biggest city to date to stop celebrating the Italian explorer, and instead honor the indigenous people whose lives were destroyed by the enslavement, violence, colonialism, and plunder that Columbus is now understood to have unleashed. As will states like Alaska, Vermont, Minnesota and Oregon.

Whatever you call it, the day inexplicably remains a bank holiday.

An organizer of the local Italian-American Festival says it's an obvious attempt to be politically correct, and a missed opportunity. Amid the debate, many also note that on October 12, 1492, the explorer made landfall in the Bahamas, not in what later became the United States.

Related news