WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s proclamation Friday commemorating Columbus Day veered from a typical White Home vacation announcement, with stark warnings of “radical activists” searching for to tarnish the explorer’s legacy.
Native American advocates have pressed states for years to vary Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day over considerations that Christopher Columbus helped launch centuries of genocide towards indigenous populations within the Americas.
“Sadly, in recent years, radical activists have sought to undermine Christopher Columbus’s legacy,” Trump stated in his proclamation declaring Monday Columbus Day. “These extremists seek to replace discussion of his vast contributions with talk of failings, his discoveries with atrocities, and his achievements with transgressions.”
Trump has been projecting himself as a defender of America’s historical past and monuments as he seeks reelection. He signed an government order lately to determine a fee to advertise what he calls “patriotic education.” The transfer is partly a response to The New York Occasions’ “1619 Project,” which highlights the long-term penalties of slavery and the contributions of Black Individuals.
Trump regularly cites the fee at his marketing campaign rallies, and he did so once more in his proclamation Friday.
Trump has additionally ordered federal businesses to finish range coaching packages. In his proclamation Friday, he stated many such packages “are grounded in the same type of revisionist history that is trying to erase Christopher Columbus from our national heritage.”
“Together, we must safeguard our history and stop this new wave of iconoclasm by standing against those who spread hate and division,” Trump declared.