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10 October 2017, 12:37 | Marta Robbins
Letter: Columbus Day should be a national holiday
There doesn't need to be a choice between a holiday celebrating Christopher Columbus or indigenous people, says Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
"Columbus was controversial and he had his dark side, as many figures in history, but taking the statue down will cause a lot of division", Albanese said. They spoke out before being escorted away. The resolution that was passed stated that it wants to teach the Native Americans history in schools.
Speaking about the same, Leo Killsback, a professor of American Indian Studies at Arizona State University, said, "Columbus Day is not just a holiday, it represents the violent history of colonization in the Western hemisphere", History.com reported. Several other major cities such as Phoenix and Seattle also celebrate Indigenous Peoples' Day.
Columbus Day in recent years has sparked a discussion on whether the holiday should even be called that anymore.
Korten, whose organization supports the study of Columbus' impact on history and opposes efforts to rename Columbus Day "Indigenous People's Day", mentioned that Italian-Americans take special pride in Columbus.
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The statue, which stands 75-feet high and rally organizers say was a gift to the city of NY from Italian-American immigrants, has come under fire lately from groups who highlight Columbus' mistreatment of Native Americans and Caribbeans. Columbus Day is a day that we've chosen to celebrate who we are. I'm 58 years old now, so a long time.
For two years prior in 2015 and 2016, Gov. Bill Walker and city mayors established the day as the second Monday of October, rather than the state-recognized celebration of Columbus Day.
Obama also mentioned Native Americans in 2014, proclaiming, "we also recognize the suffering inflicted upon Native Americans and we recommit to strengthening tribal sovereignty and maintaining our strong ties".
One option is adding statues, said Alfred Brophy, a law professor at the University of Alabama who studies historical memory.
The Christopher Columbus Italian Society owns the statue, but the land belongs to the city. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, "The Italian American Civic League of Utah sent the City Council a letter September 26, understanding the proposed resolution as the rejection of Columbus Day - "an uncalled-for affront to our culture" and "degrading and demeaning to all Italian-Americans".
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