City’s switch to Indigenous Peoples’ Day slights Italian immigrants’ contributions

Oct 02, 2017 1251

I attended the Sept. 18 City Council meeting that was attempting to eradicate Columbus Day as a city holiday, a proposal sponsored by Councilor Pious Ali. It is true that Native Americans endured many atrocities in the past, and these actions should be rectified, but not at the expense of celebrating our Italian ancestors, who also faced discrimination for centuries.

We Italian-Americans are very proud of our heritage. Portland has a large population of Italians, some of them our forefathers, who labored on the waterfront and laid the cobblestones along the streets of the Old Port. They did whatever they could to find work to put food on the table for their families. They worked for everything and had nothing handed to them.

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