Minneapolis and Seattle gave Indigenous People’s Day a big push in becoming a holiday and now there are many cities that participate. Native American activists celebrate the day on the second Monday in October, which, of course, is Columbus Day. According to a reporter at CBS News:
The campaigns say the federal holiday honoring Christopher Columbus – and the parades and pageantry accompanying it – overlook a painful history of colonialism, enslavement, discrimination and land grabs that followed the Italian explorer’s 1492 arrival in the Americas. The indigenous holiday takes into account the history and contributions of Native Americans for a more accurate historical record, activists have argued.
Nick Estes of Albuquerque told CBS about the importance of the day to his community, explaining:
For the Native community here, Indigenous Peoples Day means a lot. We actually have something. We understand it’s just a proclamation, but at the same time, we also understand this is the beginning of something greater.
Check out some great quotes about the Native American peoples below to celebrate Indigenous People’ Day:
– Through consciousness, our minds have the power to change our planet and ourselves. It is time we heed the wisdom of the ancient indigenous people and channel our consciousness and spirit to tend the garden and not destroy it. – Bruce Lipton
– The truth is nobody can own anything. That was an unheard-of concept among indigenous people. We invented that. – Tom Shadyac
– Everyone who’s born in the Western Hemisphere is a Native American. We are all Native Americans. – Russell Means
Berkeley, California, has observed Indigenous Peoples Day since 1992. The purpose of the holiday is to promote Native American culture and to honor the history of Native American peoples.
In 1994, the United Nations declared an International Day of the World’s Indigenous People, but had it made for August 9th because there was concern about upsetting the tradition of Columbus Day.