Statues honoring explorer Christopher Columbus have come under the threat of vandals in recent weeks.
L.A. Renames Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples Day as Monuments Vandalized Across Country
Throughout the United States, activists continue to make an effort at correcting the mistakes of past generations.
From Confederate statues to street names, a movement continues to gain steam, which attempts to stop honoring American icons who have posthumously found themselves on the wrong side of history.
In Los Angeles, the City Council recently voted 14-1 to rename Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples Day.
The lone no vote to change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples day belonged to Councilman Joe Busciano because he decided to side with many Italian-Americans who view Columbus Day as a celebration of Italian culture and history.
Councilman Mitch O’Farrell from the Wyandotte Indian tribe spearheaded the measure to rename Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples Day.
According to TheGrio.com, “Many people see Columbus as a symbol of genocide committed against the indigenous people of the Americas, and his celebration has been especially called into question as the nation debates questions of how to honor its past without honoring the atrocities committed.”
On Thursday, CBS New York reported that vandals beheaded a Columbus statue in Yonkers, N.Y. The latest destruction marks the fourth time in 10 days that a Columbus statue has been vandalized.
According to CBS New York, similar incidents of vandalizing have occurred in cities like Houston, Baltimore and Buffalo, N.Y.
“I’m horrified that something like that happened in Yonkers,” said Italian-American Patsy Gambardella. “I think these are all copycat actions. To have people come out and destroy them because of their personal opinion, it’s very disrespectful and shows us a very bad direction in the way America is going.”
Despite the reverence many have for Columbus, the explorer’s remains controversial.
According to Biography.com, “Columbus has been credited for opening up the Americas to European colonization as well as blamed for the destruction of the native peoples of the islands he explored. Ultimately, he failed to find what he set out for: a new route to Asia and the riches it promised.”