Three Articles, One Academic Paper, and One Poem for Columbus Day/Indigenous Peoples Day

Photo credit: Aryeh Alex, CC BY 2.0.

First, from the Washington Post: Columbus, Ohio, once spent $95 million to celebrate Columbus Day. Now, it’s canceled.

The mayor’s office has said this decision is not connected to the nationwide movement to rename Columbus Day as “Indigenous Peoples Day” because of Columbus’s enslavement and exploitation of native people.

Instead, it is because the city lacks funding to give its 8,500 employees the day off on both Columbus Day and Veterans Day, mayor’s office spokeswoman Robin Davis told The Washington Post early Monday. So, the city chose Veterans Day.

On the subject of “governments paying for things,” we go to Newsweek: Hidden Writing on 500-Year-Old Scrolls Reveals Secrets of First English Voyage to America:

Nine years ago, Evan Jones, a historian from Britain’s University of Bristol, published a long-lost letter written by King Henry VII that detailed how William Weston, a Bristol merchant, was preparing an expedition to the “new found land” with support from the monarch.


Now, Jones and historian Margaret Condon—also at the University of Bristol—have found evidence to suggest that Weston was an early supporter of Cabot and that the merchant received a handsome reward from the king in 1500 for his exploration of the “new land.”

In total, he was given 30 pounds—equivalent to about six years’ pay for an ordinary laborer at the time—indicating that Henry was pleased with the outcome of his expedition, according to a paper published in the journal Historical Research.

If you want to go to the source, Historical Research has made the full paper free to read:

[…] rather than being purely English sponsored expeditions, as had always been assumed, Cabot’s voyages from Bristol were among the many European expeditions of this period that were funded by Italian financiers, especially those of the city‐states of Genoa and Florence, but which were prosecuted under different national flags.

Meanwhile, Refinery29 reminds us that not all ordinary laborers get paid the same rate: It Takes Native American Women 9 Extra Months Of Work To Achieve Equal Pay.

Today, Native American women in the U.S. only make, on average, 57 cents for every dollar a white American man makes, according to the American Association of University Women(AAUW). This means Native women have to work roughly nine months longer than a white man to make the same amount of money. And, according to The National Women’s Law Center, the gap is particularly bad in some states, such as California where the gap between Native American women’s and non-Hispanic men’s yearly wages add up to $34,833, or a whopping $1,395,320 over a a lifetime.

Lastly, you’ll want to read American Arithmetic, a poem by 2018 MacArthur Fellow (aka MacArthur Genius) Natalie Diaz.

At the National Museum of the American Indian,
68 percent of the collection is from the U.S.
I am doing my best to not become a museum
of myself. I am doing my best to breathe in and out.
I am begging: Let me be lonely but not invisible.

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