Columbus Day Could Soon Become Indigenous Peoples Day in Oberlin

by

2 comments
PHOTO VIA WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
  • Photo via Wikimedia Commons
Many in Oberlin are calling for Indigenous Peoples Day to replace the annual celebration of Columbus Day, making the city the first to do so in Ohio. And last night's city council meeting brought out dozens of supporters of the proposed resolution.

Jeff Pierce, spokesman for the Ohio American Indian Movement, made an impassioned plea for the removal of the federal holiday.



“(Columbus) is single handedly responsible … for decimating cultures, for rape, murder, a complete genocide, and when you pay tribute to Christopher Columbus by calling it Columbus Day, it endorses that behavior,” said Pierce at last night's meeting, The Chronicle reported.

But some Christopher Columbus supporters also spoke. Jonathan Petrea, a representative of the Knights of Columbus, said he believes that Columbus was falsely blamed for the actions of others and that Indigenous Peoples Day should be recognized on another day.



“We strongly object and oppose any efforts to abolish or diminish Columbus,” Petrea said, The Chronicle reported. “He has been the victim of horrific slander concerning his conduct.”

After hearing from folks on both sides of the issue, all council members accepted the first reading of the resolution, which would make the second Monday of October Indigenous Peoples Day in Oberlin.

The resolution is set to be further discussed June 19.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.