Columbus Day glorifies the enslavement of Native Americans and should be replaced by Indigenous Peoples' Day, according to Binghamton University anthropologist Matthew Sanger.
For many Native Americans, Columbus Day is seen as glorifying the colonization of the Americas and the attempted genocide of indigenous peoples across the New World. While Columbus is often celebrated as an explorer who “discovered” the Americas, Native Americans point out that Columbus promoted the enslavement of indigenous peoples and began a pattern of abuse that characterized European treatment of Native Americans for centuries. Many communities, including several states, have concluded that the celebration of Columbus Day glorifies the violent treatment of Native Americans and that instead we should take this day to celebrate the peoples who occupied the Americas before Columbus set sail.
"I strongly support replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples’ Day, a holiday celebrated since 1989 and increasing in scale as more and more people realize how hurtful Columbus Day is for not only Native Americans, but for anyone who recognizes the brutal history of colonization in the Americas and the place Columbus had in those events," said Sanger.