Campbell residents displeased with the city’s Columbus Day celebration

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Campbell residents were displeased with the city celebrating Columbus Day on Tuesday. 

On Monday, the city’s Facebook page posted a photo of the water tower and wrote, “Look towards the Water Tower tonight for a special lighting. At the request of the City Council, our Campbell Water Tower will be lit this evening in red, white, & blue to commemorate  #ColumbusDay.”

However, residents were not happy. 

“Columbus Day … really? Why aren’t we observing Indigenous Peoples’ Day? This is very upsetting,” Renee Parmelee commented on the city’s Facebook post.

“It’s so backwards it’s embarrassing. This is a city comprised of caring educated residents who reside in Silicon Valley,” Margaret Mori wrote.

“Get with the times dude. There’s nothing to celebrate about Columbus,” Leslie Knecktel wrote.

Campbell city stands on the land where the Muwekma Ohlone tribe lived for thousands of years. 

On Tuesday, City Council member Sergio Lopez wrote an apology and said: 

“The water tower is meant to be a symbol of unity for our community. We should instead recognize that yesterday was Indigenous People’s Day, celebrating the beauty of their culture and not the actions of someone who committed genocide against them,” Lopez wrote.

Lopez explained that the tower lighting incident was embarrassing. 

Columbus Day is a national holiday, referring to the day Christopher Columbus arrived in America on October 12, 1492. 

“Since unfortunately our federal government continues to recognize Columbus Day, this date was added by default,” he explained.

“I’m grateful to every one of our residents who commented and wrote in, to push us to do better and hold us accountable as a city,” Lopez wrote.