Last October, I got to read the 2015 proclamation changing “Columbus Day” to “Indigenous People’s Day” for the town of Chapel Hill. I grew up here, and getting the chance to read this in my hometown was a pretty incredible experience (please forgive my terrible Anishinaabemowin pronunciation — I’m still learning!).
Chapel Hill was following Carrboro’s lead, and Hillsboro soon followed. That meant all three cities in Orange County had made the switch. It was interesting, then, (but not very surprising) when the county passed its own authorization to change the name with very little fanfare. In fact, the whole announcement was overshadowed by a very well-attended discussion about the discharge of firearms and changing the Orange County code. Despite the low publicity profile, this is a huge deal. Yes, Orange County is (possibly next to Buncombe County, Asheville’s home) one of the most progressive counties in the state. It might be less note-worthy here than elsewhere. Still, I’m proud that one month ago today, my county joined the movement for #IndigenousPeoplesDay.
Wherever you are, please urge your own city and county governments to join the movement, too.
You can learn more by checking out other cities’, counties’, and universities’ stories: