List of US states celebrating Columbus Day in 2019
List of US states celebrating Columbus Day in 2019
Read Cav. Josephine A. Maietta’s plea published by We the Italians

Read Dr. Maria Rodriguez-Giammarella’s passionate email to the NEA president Lily Eskelsen Garcia

Read below Dr. Manny Alfano’s email

 

Italian American One Voice Coalition
National Education Association Task Force:
Phase 1 Results… Part 2

Hello Task Force Members (This is a long email, but please read it carefully – we need your continued help!):

THANK YOU!  We had a great effort by our Task Force members in Phase 1 of our campaign to overturn the NEA Anti-Italian, Anti-Columbus Resolution!

Although we don’t know the total, we received dozens and dozens of CCs of emails sent to the NEA President.  And, many organizations had their members send emails.  In addition, the phones at NEA HQ in DC were busy many times when people called.  Others did get through and were told they were swamped with calls.

Interestingly – we received a number of emails from people with Puerto Rican heritage (no Italian heritage) who fully support our efforts and emailed and called the NEA as well.  That’s great! (see letter below)

BUT, PLEASE keep emailing and calling!!!  We need to keep the pressure on!  The NEA President responded to some emails with the same “canned” response showing indifference to the attack on our heritage.  We must continue!

We are going to launch Phase 2 soon.

In that planning, we ask a representative of each Task Force member to join our next Video Conference.  We will send the details soon, but please let me know who can join the video conference by replying with that person’s name and email ASAP.

Thanks, again, for your efforts as we join together to oppose this attack!

Sincerely,
Manny Alfano

Italian American One Voice Coalition
P.O. Box 2333 Bloomfield, NJ 07003 … www.iaovc.org
Phone 1 (844) 862-8623 (844 UNA-VOCE) or 201 953-0135
President Dr. Manny Alfano mannyalfano@comcast.net
“Say Nothing, Do Nothing and you will surely Become Nothing!”


Read email from Dr. Maria Rodriguez-Giammarella, a Puerto Rican educator:

Dear President Lily Eskelsen Garcia:

As a retired Puerto Rican educator, I write to strongly oppose the NEA resolution to rename the Columbus Day Holiday to Indigenous People’s Day.  I believe that the accomplishments of Christopher Columbus are an important part of history, in general, and Puerto Rican history, in particular, which has made us who we are today in the United States and on the island of Puerto Rico. As a Puerto Rican woman and a descendant of the Tainos, I celebrate this factual history.   

However, I do consider that the accomplishments of indigenous people, who originated in Asia and crossed the Bering Strait landmass into North America, should also be celebrated.  Indigenous people deserve to have their own holiday, but not by eliminating what is part of my heritage and the heritage of Italian Americans.  Moreover, I understand that you have repeatedly refused to meet with representatives of IAVOC (Italian American One Voice Coalition) over the past few years.  Your refusal to meet with IAVOC and other Italian American organizations to discuss the NEA resolution and an alternate holiday for Native Americans is unbecoming of your position as NEA President.  

As President of the NEA, you have failed to show “academic integrity”, as you claim.  Instead, you have made a mockery of “academic integrity” by proposing to erase past history, which includes the accomplishments of Christopher Columbus, and my cultural heritage as a Puerto Rican woman and a descendant of the Tainos.  For your information, history shows that the Tainos were often the object of crimes and enslavement by Carib Indians.  Thus, the history of humanity cannot be celebrated by denigrating and supplanting the accomplishments of one group or a person[s] for another group[s] or individual(s) for the sake of political expediency.  Your notion of “academic integrity” will only make sense when you and members of the NEA understand the importance of telling the history of humanity in its entirety! 

For the above reasons, I call upon the NEA to withdraw its current resolution to rename the Columbus Day Holiday to Indigenous People’s Day and join with other groups to advocate for a separate national holiday for Indigenous People.

Maria Rodriguez-Giammarella, Ph.D.

Retired Associate Professor/CUNY

Member AFT, NYSUT, PSC-CUNY

IMPORTANT


REMEMBER on August 13, 2019 we would like to have as many members and supporters as possible email and call (do both, please) the following:

E-Mail – NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia at leskelsen@nea.org

 AND call NEA Headquarters at 202- 833- 4000 and firmly object to NEA’s July resolution to eliminate Columbus Day and urge the NEA to OVERTURN that Resolution. Remember to be polite, but firm.

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Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition Galvanizes Widespread Opposition to NEA Resolution to Eliminate Columbus Day

Approved on August 12, 2019 13:54 GMT

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Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition Galvanizes Widespread Opposition to NEA Resolution to Eliminate Columbus Day

Task Force Coalesces to Demand NEA Overturn Anti-Italian Resolution BLOOMFIELD, NJ, USA, August 12, 2019 — Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition Galvanizes Widespread Opposition to NEA Resolution to Eliminate Columbus Day Task Force …