Should San Francisco rename Columbus Day Indigenous Peoples Day?

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San Francisco is in the middle off a controversy over a name. (AP Photo)

San Francisco is in the middle off a controversy over a name. Lawmakers are considering joining a growing list of cities doing away with the Columbus Day holiday and replacing it with a day that celebrates Native Americans.

RELATED: LA City Council votes to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day

Berkeley became the first city in the nation to ditch Columbus Day back in 1992, and rechristen it Indigenous Peoples Day. Since then many other cities have done the same. Several tribal organizations have pushed for the change including the California Association of Tribal governments.

"He didn't discover America. We were here. When Columbus landed... oppression, subjugation, dominance and genocide that followed that doesn't, we think, deserve a holiday," said CA Assn. of Tribal Governments spokesperson Will Micklin said.

Supervisor Malia Cohen's proposal would make all city communications refer to that second Monday in October as Indigenous Peoples Day. "This is in no way an attack or criticism on anyone's culture or race or ideological beliefs," she said.

RELATED: Columbus Day renamed Indigenous Peoples Day in some US cities

But San Francisco's Italian American Community is insulted. They are celebrating the 150th anniversary of what is the nation's oldest parade honoring their culture. "This is about our Italian heritage, it's the only day that's recognized for us," said Guido Perego of the SF Italian Athletic Club. "And quote honestly we're just sort of being pushed to the side."

Perego has an ally in Jacqueline Bruno of San Francisco's Muwekma Ohlone tribe. They met with Supervisor Aaron Peskin hoping for a compromise to change Columbus Day not to Indigenous Peoples day but to Italian Heritage Day.

"Why are we going to take that away from them?" asked Bruno.

The vote is scheduled for Tuesday.

Related Topics:
politicscolumbus dayholidaySan Francisco
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