Loquitur

How should we celebrate Columbus Day?

Christopher Columbus is attributed for discovering the Americas. Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

This past Monday, students were given the day off for the dean’s fall holiday. We students are facing midterms and busy social lives. A day off is much needed.

Once again, deans fall holiday coincides with Columbus Day. Columbus day began to be celebrated in some countries for about 200 years. it became a national holiday in the united states in the 1930s.

Columbus Day commemorates Christopher Columbus “discovering” the Americas in 1942. This is celebrated the second Monday of October every year.

From very young, students are taught that Columbus traveled across the ocean to reach the East Indies.

In elementary school, we were taught that Columbus was a thought-leader in believing the Earth was round; in actuality, many people, at the time, acknowledged the Earth was round. Columbus instead thought the Earth was much smaller than most other people believed and that is why he attempted to sail across the globe to the East Indies.

Though we have this day marked in our calendars, many people are wondering if we should still celebrate this day. People debate e if he is even relevant because he obviously did not discover America. Others disagree with the holiday because of the violent consequences of his arrival. The fact is people were already living in North America and still are today. The violence of our past is shown through many of the holidays that are celebrated.

Places such as Vermont, Alaska, Minneapolis and more celebrate Indigenous People’s Day instead.

This is a celebration of Native Americans who were the first people in America. There were many unjust actions done to Native Americans at that time. These locations point to the subjugation of Native Americans that started with Columbus arrival. Loquitur proposes that we focus on one aspect of Columbus’s voyage that has relevance to us today.

Another way to think of Columbus is to think about the mission he took rather than the actions. More of us need to take courageous missions like Columbus. He traveled the world with himself and his crew; we, as the millennial generation, need take big steps and discover. We need to help the world continue to grow.

We are able to continue to grow and receive an education because of another immigrant who traveled from Italy to the U.S., Mother Cabrini, who is the patron saint of immigrants. She did not flee Italy to prove others wrong but to better the lives of many.

Mother Cabrini’s feast day is celebrated on November 13 but is not a nationally known holiday. Mother Cabrini originally wanted to be a missionary of China but was sent to the states instead. She went this way to care for the children of Italy.

When she arrived, she accomplished so much more than Columbus ever did. She went to the states to help Italian children and immigrants there. We all need to be more like mother Cabrini and celebrate her legacy daily.

With everything that has recently happened in America, we should not be celebrating but fighting for those who come here for a better life. There has been so much iniquity done that it is only right to focus on how we could make things better.

America the beautiful. America the great. There are so many opportunities and so much hope in this world we can give each other a hand day by day.

Work together and, rather than focusing on why Columbus Day should not be celebrated, look for courageousness in others.

Celebrate each other and discover.

Take the negatives out of a situation and bring forth the positives during these times. The more steps we take to move forward, the better things will be.