MORE NEWS ON THE NATIVE AMERICAN HOLIDAY
OCTOBER 23, 2000
Kimberly Teehee, representing the Congressional Indian Caucus in Washington DC. has announced to us that the national holiday for Native Americans bill will go before Congress sometime after they reconvene next year. This gives us ample time to build a stronger conscious of all Americans to inform the Federal Government that our tax dollars paying for Columbus Day is a National sick joke.
Kimberly Teehee and the Congressional Indian Caucus are to be commended for taking on the issue calling for a national holiday for Native Americans. It is United Native America's stand to change Columbus Day to Native American Day. The vast majority of Americans are in favor of this instead of creating a whole new tax paid holiday from the Federal Government.
We have contacted the press secretary of Senator Campbell of Colorado and informed him of our holiday petition online and that over ten thousand seven hundred people have signed the petition, he requested that I send the holiday petition link to him. He was unaware that we had sent thousands of hand signed petitions to the Indian Caucus and that seventeen States do not recognize Columbus Day, and the state of South Dakota has changed Columbus Day to Native American Day. We request that this information be passed on to the Senator and would like a response as to where he stands on this issue.
We have spoken to presidential candidate Bush's press secretary's office concerning an Internet email that is going around stating that Mr. Bush will consider appointing Senator Gorton of Washington State to the secretary of interior office, if the Indian tribes are successful in his not being reelected to the Senate. They have informed us that this email is totally false and is trying to find out where it originated from.
It is United Native America's stand that Senator Gorton with his anti Indian attitude, should not even be on the Indian Affairs committee! Let alone be appointed to head the United States Interior department. We suggested to the Bush's campaign that a Native American should be appointed to this office for the first time in the history of the United States.
The grass roots movement of United Native America started in 1993 concerning the National Native American holiday issue, We brought this issue on the Internet the last part of June 2000, on the first of August we set up the online petition calling for a national holiday for Native Americans and Senate hearings on the exclusion of Native Americans in television, movies, sports, national news media and music industries. This petition has been well received by people all across the country and all around the world.
We are in the process of making changes in the petition as they are needed.
MORE INFORMATION FROM UNITED NATIVE AMERICA
Letter to, Mr. Russell Means:
With our grass roots movement we have been successful in getting the congressional Indian caucus in Washington DC. to start drafting a national holiday bill to bring before congress. We have sent thousands of hand signed petitions to the Indian caucus. On August 1st we posted an online petition for the national holiday issue and the racial exclusion of Native Americans in top industries in this country.
At this time the Indian caucus has requested for Indian Nations to pass resolutions or draft official letters in support of the national holiday issue and a copy of it sent to their office and a copy to United Native America. We are in hopes of getting your full support concerning these issues.
We have conducted demonstrations against the national sports teams for racially excluding Native Americans from playing on their teams. All of the national sports teams that use Indian heritage to boast the image of their teams do not and have not recruited Indians to play for their teams. This is a serious issue through out the sports industries.
At this time we are entering into negotiations with Senator Nickles of Oklahoma, Senator Campbell of Colorado and Senator McCain of Arizona. We are in the process of gathering information concerning these issues to forward to their office for consideration of calling for senate hearings. We have been in contact with Maurice Smith head of the native American sports council in Colorado Springs, He has informed us he is in full support of this issue and has offered his assistance.
Another group that we are contacting for support on this issue is, America Indian Youth Running Strong, based in Lorton, VA. and Billy Mills 1964 Olympic Gold Metal winner. If you know of any other group that would like to offer their assistance in preparing information on how the national sports industry and others could bring about change for Native Americans to be a part of their industries please forward that information to us.
We view the sports industry in three different categories, the first one is, using Native Americans as mascots, this should stop. The second part is the misuse of Indian heritage to boast the image of sports teams, such as the inappropriate image of an Indian used by the Cleveland Indians. We are in support of sports teams using Indian heritage in a positive and respectful way, from grade school to the national sports industries. The proud Indian heritage should be used by sports teams that shows the pride of this heritage. We should not ban our heritage use when it is used respectfully. The third part being the racial exclusion of Indians being recruited to play for national sports teams.
The Washington Redskins applied for a federal license trade mark for their team. They were turned down on the grounds of redskins being offensive and racially demeaning to the American Indian community. We fully support the action of this federal office. At this time there is a law suite pending against the Washington Redskins to make them change the name of their team. This information was given to us by the Native American rights fund in Boulder, Colorado.
We appreciate your efforts and others in negotiating with the Italian community in Denver, Colorado, to change the name of their Columbus Day parade to Italian heritage pride march. Columbus never set foot on this land, nor was he a citizen of this country. His own country has not honored him with a holiday. It is being reported that Columbus is not even Italian.
There are seventeen states that do not recognize Columbus Day. The state of South Dakota has changed Columbus Day to Native American Day. United Native America is calling on congress to reevaluate its national holiday list by moving Columbus Day back to it's traditional day the second Wednesday of October and not be a federal tax paid holiday as is, St. Patrick's Day and Octoberfeast. It would be a good idea for the Italian community to change Columbus Day to Italian Heritage Day, and make the second Monday of October a federal national holiday for Native Americans.
Please inform us of any action the Native American community in Denver, Colorado will take this coming Columbus Day. United Native America would like to be a part of any positive protest of Columbus Day in the Denver area. Country Road Chronicles news paper featured a full page report on our demonstration against the Atlanta Braves for not recruiting Indians to play on their team in their past July issue.
Founder of United Native America
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