12 Things to Do to Commemorate Indigenous Peoples on
Christopher Columbus arrived as an immigrant to
"the New World." He did not "discover"
America. He was not a hero, he was a war criminal. Today, let's
remember and celebrate the Peoples who were here first!
Last year, both Seattle and Minneapolis voted to
stop recognizing "Columbus Day" in favor of Indigenous
Peoples' Day, shifting the holiday's focus from Columbus to the
people he encountered in the New World and their modern-day
descendants. Inspired by this movement, the University of
Alaska Southeast, Oklahoma University and even Fargo, North
Dakota recently voted to also embrace Indigenous People's Day.
In the past two months, eight cities got rid of Columbus Day in
favor of adopting Indigenous Peoples' Day. Three of those cities
adopted Indigenous Peoples' Day this week: Albuquerque, NM,
Lawrence, KS, Portland, OR, St. Paul, MN, Bexar County, TX,
Anadarko, OK, Olympia, WA, Alpena, MI. Oklahoma City came close
to passing it in September and will try to pass it again on
October 13th, the day after the holiday.
We can all take example from these cases and take action for
1. Watch and
Share Reconsider Columbus Day by NuHeightzCinema
Reconsider Columbus Day
2. Sign a Petition to President
Obama to Change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples' Day
3. Reconsider what you were
taught in history class about the "discovery of
America" with this short animated film, History vs.
4. Brush up on your
knowledge of Indigenous Peoples. Watch First Light.
"First Light" Trailer
First Light independently documents
the work of the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and
Reconciliation Commission (TRC), the first such task force
to investigate issues important to Native Americans. The TRC was
dedicated to uncovering and acknowledging the truth about what
happened to Wabanaki children and families involved with the
child welfare system.
Indigenous Leaders Learn about and celebrate some of the incredible
Indigenous leaders from U.S. history and contemporary times. Here
are some resources to get you started:
Show these leaders some love and spread the
6. Take Action by
Getting Involved in the Anti-mascot Movement
There are still more than 1,000 high school,
university and professional teams that continue to have Native
American mascots. Though changes have been made at the high
school and college levels, at the professional level there has
been virtually no change. Start the change in your community.
Check out our Abolishing
Racist Native Mascots: A Toolkit for Change.
8. Come to a Cultural
Survival Bazaar in Amherst, MA.
The Amherst Bazaar falls
on "Columbus Day" weekend, a holiday that many
Indigenous Peoples in the US and their allies are working to
rename and reframe as "Indigenous Peoples' Day."
Celebrate and support Indigenous Peoples on this day by attending
the Cultural Survival Bazaar, taste Indigenous foods, listen
to Indigenous music and stories, and support Indigenous communities
by buying art that benefits their cultures.
October 10, 11, & 12, 2015
Amherst, MA 01002
10am to 5pm
Mayan hip hop performances by Tz'utu Kan,
whom we welcome for the first time to perform rhythms that
express interpretations of the ancient Mayan calendar
through Mayan sounds and intercultural borrowing from Native
American, Andean, Rastafarian, hip hop, and dancehall
9. Participate in a
People's Climate Movement Event
With increasing awareness about the connection
between climate change and social and economic inequality, the
environmental movement has begun to blossom into a holistic
struggle for justice. This fall, front-line communities
impacted by the environmental crisis and climate change, are
joining with workers, people of faith, students, immigrants, racial,
climate and economic justice activists and other community
members, to call for bold action on climate at the local,
national and global levels. Look for an event in your area
Our work is only possible because of people like
you, who believe in and support our mission to advocate for
Indigenous Peoples' rights and support Indigenous communities'
self-determination, cultures, and political resilience. Please
12. Spread the
One of the easiest and most effective things
you can do is raise awareness about Indigenous Peoples. Forward,
post this message on facebook, or tweet it!
we welcome your comments. Please send your feedback and
suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
advocates for Indigenous Peoples' rights and supports Indigenous
communities' self-determination, cultures and political
resilience since 1972.
To read about Cultural
Survival's work around the world, click here. To
explore 40 years of information on Indigenous issues use our
For ways to take action
to support Indigenous communities, click here.
We take on governments
and multinational corporations -- and they always have more
resources than we do -- but with the support of people like you,
we do win. Your contribution is crucial to that effort. Click here to do your part.