Monday, Oct. 11 offers three choices: LGBTQ+ celebration, Native American reconsideration, and some conflict of interest to Chris Columbus 1492 believers.
As everyone knows, this date marks National Coming Out Day (and the Pride Source assumption is that our readers have already done so, or will be encouraged to do so, with or without fanfare or publicity, unless, of course, you’re a mega star, big-name pops or blues singer, TV or off-Broadway playwright, actor, producer or baseball, basketball or football hero! Better late than never.)
This day is also known as Indigenous Peoples Day, in celebration of Native American history, its estimated 570-plus tribes and their cultures and traditions. (Recently footprints have been found on our corner of the planet that are determined to be 20,000 years old.)
Lastly, there’s the federally-sanctioned Christopher Columbus Day, which is rarely, if ever, honored these days, because of the abuse of Native Americans occasioned by Columbus in 1492 and during the following decades.
In 1992, the 500th anniversary of the Columbus landing, Berkeley, California formally stopped celebrating Columbus Day. Twenty-two years later, in 2014, Santa Cruz officially called its reconsidered support “First Peoples Day.”
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 6.79 million Americans, or 2.09 percent of our total population, have past or present tribal ties or ancestry. Fifteen states have 100,000 or more residents with indigenous ancestry. Michigan’s native population is 45,569.
Among the more well known tribes are Navajo Nation, Cherokee, Choctaw, Sox, Apache, Iroquois, and Eskimo (but don’t ask ex-Alaska Gov.#9 Sarah Palin).
A concept shared by many indigenous tribes is the presence of two-spirited persons: those whose intrinsic mental make up and resultant actions and interests are both male/female or female/male, gendered in varying degrees,
Indeed! Among these: Lakota, Mohave, Crow and Cheyenne. Two-spirited people are believed by some to be lucky in love and able to bestow such luck on others. (Alas, Chris Columbus hadn’t a clue.)