The New Columbus Day

Faye Sinotte, writer

Columbus Day, the day celebrating the Spanish explorer and his discoveries, is being viewed differently after Indigneous People’s Day gains attention.

The praised historical figure is known as the man who discovered America, says Sofie Chouinard, a student at FHS. But Indigneous people were living in the Caribbean, which is where he first landed, long before Christopher sailed over in 1492. He enslaved and killed thousands of Natives when he claimed the islands for Spain.

The sudden wipeout of Indigenous people in America suppressed their culture and lost their history. This is why many people are choosing to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day instead of Columbus Day; to support and learn about Indigenous history.

Sofie explained that the controversy between the famous Spaniard, and how he hurt an entire population, is gaining publicity for Indigenous People’s Day.

Indigenous People’s Day is also an opportunity for people to educate themselves. Sofie went in depth into her experience of learning about Columbus, and his crimes against Native Americans, by saying that she didn’t learn about what he did until 7th or 8th grade when her sister was taking APUSH (Advanced Placement U.S. History).

Social media platforms are being used to spread awareness, and it can take 5 minutes to learn more about Indigenous People’s Day and what it stands for. Sofie hopes that Indigenous People’s Day is celebrated, instead of it being seen as an excuse to get out of school on a Monday in October.