Indigenous People’s Day
This year October 11th is a very important day for many people across the Americas and the US. October 11th is Indigenous People’s Day, a reclamation of Colombus Day, and a time for people, Indigenous and not, to acknowledge & atone for the horrendous suffering indigenous people have endured across the Americas.
Many of us in the US and across the Americas were taught that 1492 was a year of triumph and discovery — the year that Europeans reached the last untouched corner of the world. In reality, the arrival of Europeans in what is now called the Americas started a wave of horrors for Indigenous peoples that continues to this day.
Just this year, the remains of more than 1,000 children have been found during searches of a handful of “Residential Schools” in Canada — there are dozens more that have yet to be searched, not including those in the US. These schools were part of state-sanctioned efforts to forcibly assimilate Native children by removing them from their homes, disconnecting them from their language, culture, families, and ancestral land. Many children never returned, leaving their families to wonder and grieve without closure.
The injustices Indigenous people suffer are not just in the past — today, Native American women experience some of the highest rates of abuse and assault in the world, as well the second-largest pay gap, behind only Hispanic women. Both inside and outside of the US, Indigenous peoples suffer from colorism, barriers to resources, violence, and systemic injustice. Let us take the time to acknowledge where we come from, where we are, and who came before us.
- Learn more about the history of Indigenous peoples in Florida: https://www.visitflorida.com/travel-ideas/articles/arts-history-native-american-culture-heritage-florida/
- More about Residential schools: https://www.livescience.com/childrens-graves-residential-schools-canada.html
- Violence against Indigenous Women
- More About Deb Haaland, first Indigenous Secretary of the Interior