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Celebrating National Indigenous People’s Day

Columbus day serves as a reminder for some about where we come from
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 7:35 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Monday October 11th is a holiday for a lot of us as we mark Christopher Columbus’s discovery of the Americas in 1492, but each year this day is marked with controversy. Some experts question why we have this holiday, saying people inhabited our country for centuries before Columbus accidentally discovered it. Those same critics feel Columbus is an anti-hero, and say the explorer and his colonizers brought disease, violence and abuse to the continent. Professor Simon Weffer of Northern Illinois University says it’s important we start telling history through a clearer lens.

“I think there was just this idea that we don’t need to look at the warts and the bumps and the problems with our hero’s. I think today we are much more introspective and reflective on who we put on these alters.”

Weffer also mentioned it’s important we look at multiple sources when analyzing your history. He mentions Columbus as an example, saying we saw all of his indiscretions for years through letters and documents, but chose not to tell them. Supporters of Columbus day believe that he and other historical figures should be judged by the standards of conduct of their own lifetime, not necessarily to modern standards.

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