Letter: Times are changing for indigenous peoples

Published: 12/17/2019 12:01:16 AM

Gratitude to the Merrimack Valley School Board for voting to include indigenous studies in their curriculum, especially in light of recent State House testimony suggesting little evidence of Native life in New Hampshire. No Mount Monadnock, Chocura, no Lake Massabesic, Native artifacts at the Mount Kearsarge Museum, no tribal names, lands or waterways of the Abenaki, Pennacook and Wabanaki peoples who stewarded the land we now inhabit.

Fortunately, times change. Today, over 100 cities, towns and college campuses celebrate Indigenous People’s Day, including Durham and Keene. Eleven states have resolved to recognize the holiday honoring the struggles and tragedies endured by Native Americans consequent to colonization, genocide and forced assimilation, as well as their contributions to the shared story of America.

Deb Haaland of New Mexico is a current Native congresswoman. Native activists have succeeded in Supreme Court cases arguing against the stereotypical use of Indian mascots. They have sought the re-interpretation of ancient treaties, protection of sacred burial grounds and vital water sources against pipelines, forced closures of polluting mines and reclaimed fishing rights.

More Native Americans have proudly served in our armed forces than any other ethnic group.

By honoring with gratitude the legacy of indigenous people, New Hampshire can become a more inclusive community. By supporting House Bill 221, a bill adopting Indigenous People’s Day as a national holiday, we can teach our children to value the worth and dignity of all people and be responsible for truth and justice.

ANN PODLIPNY

Chester




Concord Monitor Office

1 Monitor Drive
Concord,NH 03301
603-224-5301

 

© 2019 Concord Monitor
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy