Boston – Native Americans in Massachusetts are asking Boston Marathon organizers to move an already rescheduled date for this prestigious race to compete with a day to commemorate the contributions of indigenous peoples.
The Boston Athletic Association will postpone the 125th edition of the marathon from traditional April running to October 11 in January, assuming road racing is permitted under COVID-19 restrictions in Massachusetts. Announced.
However, the Indigenous Peoples’ Day Newton Commission complained that the new day was less than the day reserved to acknowledge the contributions of Native Americans in the past and present. The group said the first planned holiday of the October 11 holiday in Newton, a suburb of Boston, must be canceled due to the new date of the marathon.
In a recently launched online petition, the Commission decided, “Unfortunately, the Boston Athletic Association is a’side’holiday that can take away the days of indigenous peoples. By doing this, the myth that indigenous peoples are part of it is perpetuated. The past is irrelevant. “
The BAA did not respond directly to the complaint, but said the new date was selected in close collaboration with eight cities and towns along the marathon route. These communities include Newton, Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natic, Wellsley, Newton, Brookline and Boston.
“We will continue to work with city and town officials, and organizations planning events over the weekend of October 9-11,” the organization said in a statement.
Newton Mayor Rutanne Fuller said the city, which has the longest marathon course, can handle both events. She said the city has offered to host an Indigenous Day celebration in the fields of Newton South High School.
“The pandemic has complicated a lot, but we’re excited to celebrate both the Indigenous Day and the Boston Marathon on October 11, 2021 in Newton,” Fuller said in a statement. I am.
But city councilman Emily Norton said she was disappointed on the day she was chosen. “It was insensitive at best and rude in the worst case,” she said.
Indigenous days are seen instead of Columbus Day in many states and dozens of US cities. It usually takes place on the second Monday of October, consistent with federal holidays.
The Newton Group said marathon organizers should reschedule the races to give the indigenous community the space they deserve.
“Indigenous Day is a time for everyone to learn about American history related to indigenous peoples, because we are all on indigenous peoples’ lands,” the organization said in a petition. “BAA has the opportunity to recognize its importance. Instead of stealing the marathon spotlight, keep it in the spotlight on Indigenous Day.”
BAA states that this year’s race will have space for 20,000 participants. This is a narrower area than the previous year to allow for social distance. From October 8th to 10th, there will also be a virtual race with up to 70,000 participants.
The Boston Marathon, which was first held in 1897, was canceled last year for the first time in history. Instead, nearly 16,000 people ran in virtual races and completed the 26.2 mile distance themselves in 10 days.
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Move Boston Marathon from October 11th holiday
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