The Baltimore City Council is voting on Monday, Dec. 5, on a proposal to eliminate Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples’ and Italian-Americans’ Day.
We urge you to call the city hall operator THIS WEEK at 410-396-3100 or the Office of the City Council President at 410-396-4804 to respectfully express your support for preserving Columbus Day.
The following points may be useful in your conversation:
October 12 should continue to be celebrated as Columbus Day. We strongly object to and oppose any efforts to abolish or diminish this holiday by repeal, dilution or replacement. Such actions are unfair to Columbus himself and to those who celebrate his holiday.
The legacy and accomplishments of Christopher Columbus deserve to be celebrated. He was a man ahead of his time and a fearless explorer and brilliant navigator whose daring discovery changed the course of history.
Columbus has frequently been falsely blamed for the actions of those who came after him and is the victim of horrific slanders concerning his conduct.
Long-time Stanford University Professor Carol Delaney has done extensive research debunking many of the negative myths about Columbus. In fact, she paints a positive portrait of a man who had generally benign relations with the Native Americans and has been unfairly blamed for everything that ever went wrong in the New World after his arrival.
Advocating the addition of a new holiday is one thing, but it is something else altogether to lobby for the diminishment or elimination of an already well-established holiday that is celebrated by Americans year after year.
Because Columbus Day has special meaning — including to many Italian Americans and Catholics — efforts to repeal, diminish or replace Columbus Day are unfair and hurtful to those communities, regardless of what substitutions are offered.
More on Columbus Day
In 2014, I wrote about Carol Delaney and her research that debunked many myths about Columbus. She also found that Columbus was searching for gold to help fund a new crusade to retake Jerusalem from Muslim invaders.