Oct 11, 2021 - Politics & Policy

In photos: Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations highlight climate change, Indigenous lands

Demonstrators dance as they march in honor of Indigenous Peoples’ Day at Freedom Plaza on October 11
Demonstrators dance as they march in honor of Indigenous Peoples’ Day at Freedom Plaza on Oct. 11. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Although some Americans got the day off Monday for Columbus Day, many communities around the country took the opportunity to commemorate Indigenous Peoples Day and honor the contributions of Native Americans.

Why it matters: Last week President Biden became the first president to issue an official proclamation commemorating Indigenous Peoples Day.

  • "The contributions that Indigenous peoples have made throughout history ... are integral to our Nation, our culture, and our society," Biden said.

The big picture: Monday's annual Columbus Day celebrations in Washington, D.C., were disrupted by Indigenous and climate activists, per the Washington Examiner.

  • Protestors spray-painted the words "expect us" on a statue of Andrew Jackson. Activists with the chant "respect us or expect us," have protested a potentially hazardous pipeline running through Indigenous lands in Minnesota.
  • Monday's Boston Marathon was preceded by a traditional Jingle Dress Dance near the race's finish line Sunday night, and an opening statement Monday morning acknowledging the race's route through Indigenous lands, the New York Times reports.
In photos
Marathon runner holding an Indigenous flag behind him
Richard Langdeaux carried a Rosebud Sioux Tribe flag as he crossed the finish line of the 125th Boston Marathon on Indigenous Peoples Day in Boston on Oct. 11. Photo: Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images
"Expect Us" painted on a statue of U.S. President Andrew Jackson outside the White House
"Expect Us" is painted on a statue of U.S. President Andrew Jackson during a climate change protest on Indigenous Peoples Day outside the White House. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A man with a facemask advocating for environmental protection poses for a portrait
Jason Crazy Bear Turcuit Keck poses for a portrait before a climate march in honor of Indigenous Peoples Day at Freedom Plaza on Oct. 11 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images
A woman in traditional Indigenous wear
Hundreds of Native Americans and supporters of environmental advocacy organizations rally near the White House. Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Indigenous and climate protestors in DC
Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
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