A pair of anti-Columbus bills (H.3191 and S.2027) are making their way through Massachusetts House and Senate committees, and if they’re eventually passed by the state’s legislature, they would eliminate Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples Day.
These bills must be scheduled for a vote during a full session of the legislature by July 31.
If the House bill is not supported by Speaker Ronald Mariano (D), then it will not be scheduled for a vote and this controversial legislation will die for this session.
Many of us have already emailed Speaker Mariano these past months asking that he not support the controversial House bill.
TAKE ACTION AND PLEASE EMAIL SPEAKER MARIANO TODAY: Ronald.Mariano@mahouse.gov
— Below is a suggested sample email —
Subject: H3191/S2027 An Act establishing an Indigenous Peoples Day
I am writing to you regarding the pending bill to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day as a State Holiday.
I believe Italian-Americans should be recognized and respected by not taking Columbus Day away from them as a State Holiday. No other group is expected to have their day merged with another group’s. It is disrespectful both to Italian Americans as well as the Native American communities. It is not only important to Italian Americans, but has also been a proud part of America history and tradition.
There has been much misinformation circulating in the past few decades regarding the history of Christopher Columbus, and in a misguided effort to be inclusive and sensitive to all cultures, this bill produces the opposite effect — it foments exclusion and resentment, especially among Italian Americans, who have struggled for decades to be accepted into the American national life.
I urge you to not support this Bill and keep Columbus Day as is. I also suggest that the day after Thanksgiving be recognized as Native American Heritage Day and that the entire month of November be Native American Heritage Month as already declared by proclamation by the Federal Government. Both groups deserve to preserve and protect their cultural heritage and it isn’t fair to take away one people’s holiday and replace it with another, especially when there are other available days appropriate for celebration.
The Italian American Alliance is a proud member of The Conference of Presidents of Major Italian American Organizations. COPOMIAO is comprised of 54 of the most influential cultural, educational, fraternal and anti-defamation groups in the nation.
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Photo credit: The Massachusetts State House on Beacon Hill in Boston. (Elijah-Lovkoff, iStock)