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Unlearn your history on Indigenous People’s Day

One of my kindergarten memories is playing “cowboys and Indians” with friends. No one wanted to be the Indians. Because history is told by the victors.

Growing up in Oregon, I learned about Lewis & Clark, Captain Cook, and Christopher Columbus “discovering” America.

Fascinated by Native Americans, I probably got more exposure than many white children:

  • I learned about Sacajawea, Chief Seattle, Chief Joseph, and other Native heroes.

  • I visited a longhouse on a field trip.

  • My fifth-grade class had visiting indigenous students from Barrow, Alaska. A girl named Elizabeth stayed with us for a week. I recall she didn’t seem very happy. I cringe now to wonder what the experience was like for her.

  • When my family traveled through South Dakota in 1976, I loved the Crazy Horse memorial statue in progress.

  • I read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee on my own in high school.

Crazy Horse memorial in South Dakota
Crazy Horse memorial in South Dakota
But my history was so whitewashed. I didn’t learn about the Doctrine of Discovery until a few years ago. I didn’t realize so much what I’ve seen or read was warped by racism and manifest destiny.

Manifest destiny is a cultural belief that American settlers were destined to expand across North America.

We live on stolen land, and that’s why it’s important to retake this “Columbus Day” as Indigenous People’s Day. Here's why this is important.

Join me in unlearning history! Here are a few ways to start:

After you unlearn your history, support Native organizations with your time and money and spread the word about how history has been told by the victors, colonizers, and oppressors.

Celebrating Indigenous People’s Day instead of Columbus Day is a great place to start.

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1 comentario

Lady Lucky
Lady Lucky
03 dic 2023

Exploring the history of my people has been my eye-opening—essential not just for broadening horizons but also for enhancing knowledge in education. I recognizing the significance knowledge with the importance of medical residency personal statement services also, Its shaping a holistic learning experience.

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