Today is the second Monday in October, which means that it is Columbus Day in the United States. The day became a federal holiday in 1937 and to many it honors explorer Christopher Columbus’ voyage to the Americas in 1492.
To many others, however, Columbus day is a reminder of a darkness in the history of the country. Opponents of the celebration of Columbus Day point to the treatment of the indigenous populations of the Native Americans and peoples of the Caribbean after Christopher Columbus set foot onto what would later be dubbed “the new world.”
The problem to many is that the new world had already been discovered. And to these opponents, celebrating Columbus Day is akin to celebrating the eradication of an entire culture and deifying a man that laid the groundwork for the brutal period of European colonization.
Native American activists argue that celebrating the day is a perpetual detriment to those still affected by it today –
Very high on the list of those expressions of non-indigenous sensibility [that] contribute to the perpetuation of genocidal policies against Indians are the annual Columbus Day celebration, events in which it is baldly asserted that the process, events, and circumstances described above are, at best, either acceptable or unimportant. More often, the sentiments expressed by the participants are, quite frankly, that the fate of Native America embodied in Columbus and the Columbian legacy is a matter to be openly and enthusiastically applauded as an unrivaled “boon to all mankind”. Undeniably, the situation of American Indians will not — in fact cannot — change for the better so long as such attitudes are deemed socially acceptable by the mainstream populace. Hence, such celebrations as Columbus Day must be stopped
This sentiment is expressed by a particular group whose message is “Reconsider Columbus Day.” They have been producing videos like the one seen below for years –
Many on Twitter aren’t exactly loving the celebration of Columbus Day and are representing that through the humorous platform that social media provides –
Happy Columbus Day everyone. Go discover something that has already been discovered, then destroy it’s inhabitants.
“These people are very unskilled in arms… with 50 men they could all be subjected and made to do all that one wished.” -Happy Columbus Day
Happy Columbus Day? So when he went & destroyed an entire group of people he got a holiday? This is because I don’t have a nose, isn’t it?
Dear Christopher Columbus: thank you for discovering a place where people already lived. Today, I’m discovering Toledo.
Happy Columbus Day! To celebrate, walk into a stranger’s house and claim it as your own.
Happy Columbus Day. If using sophisticated weapons to wipe out a civilization gets you a holiday, we should have Darth Day.
Sorry, Native Americans… Finders keepers, losers weepers! Happy Columbus Day
Went in my neighbor’s saying, “Happy Columbus Day!” Then stole his home, diseased his family & enslaved everyone but did give em the day off
Native Americans know today as the anniversary of the day they discovered Christopher Columbus.
What are your feelings on Columbus Day? Let us know in the comments.