After being suggested and defended as a response to the Christopher Columbus Day holiday, the Day of Indigenous Peoples was recognized and celebrated by a president of the United States, for the first time, this Monday (11). In a statement, Joe Biden spoke about the date in honor of the original populations — but he also did not fail to commemorate the date in memory of the Italian colonizer who found America.
“We must never forget the centuries-long campaign of violence, displacement, assimilation and terror wrought against indigenous communities and tribal nations across our country. for our nation,” the White House said in a statement.
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In another text, Biden recalled the “historic journey” of Columbus who arrived in the Bahamas in 1492. The president, however, also stressed that “today” it is necessary to recognize “the painful history of errors and atrocities that many European explorers inflicted on tribal nations and to indigenous communities”.
“It is a measure of our greatness as a nation that we do not seek to bury these shameful episodes from our past — that we face them honestly, that we bring them to light and that we do everything we can to address them,” the US president said.
Before being taken over by the federal government, Indigenous Peoples Day was already celebrated by dozens of cities and states in the USA. The date was proposed and defended by the native peoples of the United States throughout the second half of the 20th century, accompanied by a campaign for the memory of the genocide and the violence practiced by Europeans during the colonization of America.
Edition: Anelize Moreira