Dia de la Raza, formerly known as Columbus Day

Dia de la Raza (Day of the Race) is the annual celebration of Native American Heritage on October 12 (as opposed to Columbus Day).  In 1492, people of the Taíno nation in their homeland on the island of Guanahani discovered Christopher Columbus, hopelessly lost on his way to India after grossly underestimating the earth’s longitude.  Columbus and his men brought life killing germs from Europe, along with horses, steel and gunpowder (stolen from the Chinese).  This day marked the beginning of the European invasions of the “Americas”; within 50 years, about 90% of the estimated 70 to 100 million Native American people were dead.  According to historian Marshall C. Eakin, this invasion was “the greatest demographic catastrophe in human history.”  (Please observe a moment of prayer and silence during this day. Thank you.)