Reflecting on Indigenous People's Day in the South Sound

Jenna Hanchard reports

On the steps of the Washington state capitol in Olympia, there was a celebration of history sometimes excluded: The history of the Native Americans.

"We have to work on not forgetting who we are," said Carrie Chapman Schuster, of the Palus Tribe.

Schuster said her family made sure she understood the history of native people.

"My mother said this white man’s education stops at the door. You leave all of his material all of his books outside."

Schuster’s family and tribal elders taught her about Native American History.

For Schuster, that foundation is especially crucial on days like today, the day many in America refer to as Columbus Day.

"In making him into a hero, a whole history was erased," said Doug Sackman a professor of Native American Studies at the University of Puget Sound. Sackman said most American’s don't discuss the violent removal of Native Americans that came with Columbus' arrival.

President Donald Trump proclaimed Monday as Columbus Day without mentioning Native Americans. Even in the discussion of mass shooting, including the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas which has been called the worst mass shooting in modern history

"In reality, to the Native American people that's not the worst massacre that's ever happened here (in the United States)," said Chapman Schuster.

"When we use that term modern American history that’s cutting out a consideration and a look at the outright violence that’s been put upon native peoples in this country," said Sackman.
 

© 2017 KING-TV


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