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President Joe Biden on Friday issued the first presidential proclamation of Indigenous Peoples Day, giving Christopher Columbus the most significant boost to efforts to relaunch the federal holiday celebrated for the appreciation of Native peoples.

The day will be celebrated on October 11 along with Columbus Day, which has been established by Congress.


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“For generations, federal policies have systematically sought to assimilate and displace natives and erase native cultures,” Biden wrote in the announcement for Indigenous Peoples Day. “Today, we recognize the resilience and strength of Indigenous peoples, as well as the immeasurable positive impact they have made on every aspect of American society.”

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In a separate proclamation on Columbus Day, Biden praised the role of Italian Americans in American society, but also noted the violence and harm Columbus and other explorers of the era brought on America.

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“Today, we also acknowledge the painful history of the mistakes and atrocities that many European explorers inflicted on tribal nations and indigenous communities,” Biden wrote. “It is a measure of our greatness as a nation that we try not to bury these shameful episodes of our past – that we face them honestly, we bring them to light, and that we address them.” Make every effort to.”

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It’s a break from President Donald Trump’s vehement defense of “fearless heroes” like Columbus in his 2020 holiday announcement.

“Sadly, in recent years, radical activists have tried to undermine the legacy of Christopher Columbus,” Trump said at the time. “These extremists want to replace the discussion of his vast contributions with failures, atrocities with his discoveries, and crimes with his achievements.”