Kun Luo, member of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee
I have been a resident of Westford for almost 19 years. I first learned about the controversies surrounding Columbus Day from the HBO series Soprano. Looking back, I admire director David Chase’s ingenuity to incorporate the topics into the show more than 20 years ago.
Westford DEI committee was established in 2020. I volunteered and I feel fortunate to work with a group who are passionate to improve our community.
In the past three years, the DEI committee reviewed quite a few topics. In almost every case, the committee members were able to reach a unanimous vote quickly.
The only exception is regarding the topics of Columbus Day/Indigenous People’s Day.
Everyone in the committee is polite and respectful of each other’s opinions. We discussed, we debated and we agreed to disagree.
The DEI committee also carried out an online survey regarding replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous People’s Day. The result is published on the DEI committee’s social media website.
The result shows that the majority of respondents disagree with replacing Columbus Day. A lot of them want to recognize the suffering of Indigenous People but don’t think it is fair to Columbus to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous People’s Day.
I agree with this survey. I, too, want to acknowledge the sufferings of Indigenous People. I believe it is more meaningful to celebrate Columbus Day side by side with Indigenous People’s Day.
If we can prove that, if Columbus had failed in reaching North America, Indigenous People would not have suffered through generations of atrocities, then by all means, we should replace Columbus Day.
Otherwise, why must Columbus be denounced when we are trying to acknowledge Indigenous People’s sufferings?
So to the residents of Westford, here is my question on ballot question #3, in order to acknowledge Indigenous People’s sufferings, must Indigenous People’s Day supersede Columbus Day?
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