Tuesday, 12 September 2017 10:01

Orono is the latest town to rename Columbus Day holiday Featured

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Orono is the latest town to rename Columbus Day holiday

ORONO - Orono is the latest community in Maine to rename the "Columbus Day" holiday to "Indigenous People Day."

Several people spoke at Monday night's town council meeting to express their opinions on the controversial topic.


Many members of the Penobscot Nation turned out to speak their minds and members of the council seemed receptive to the idea.


Council chair Cynthia Mehnert said "We have members of our communities in diverse backgrounds. And we have a neighbor, the Penobscot Nation. And we really value their input and them being a part of our communities. So we feel it's something we need to look into and appreciate all individuals."


Chief Joseph Orono's great, great, great granddaughter June Sapiel said "I feel that the history of this country needs to be told and it's not being told in a good way. And for me to come out here and honor my ancestors, i feel like we can speak our truth and it can be heard."


However, the topic did not go unquestioned. Some people spoke their minds, saying Columbus Day is a part of American history, asking who are we to try and change that? One resident stated "How dare you, I mean I appreciate you considering this, but how dare anybody decide to destroy our history and the wonderful history that it is?"


The council voted unanimously in favor of renaming the holiday.


The decision comes after the Bangor City Council made the decision just weeks ago to rename the holiday in its city.