Columbus Day

When she was growing up, Dina Gilio-Whitaker was constantly asked, "How much Indian blood do you have?" She could never figure out how to respond, which is not to say she didn't know who she was.

"I knew that I was Native, I knew that I was Colville, I knew my family up there on the reservation," she said recently. "But what I grew up with was a process of not being seen and not being recognized as being Native, because I was completely out of context.

Today on WLRN-Miami Herald News, you heard:

Pattrik Simmons

The U.S. Coast Guard today announced a new slow-speed zone to ensure the safety of boaters in and out of Convoy Point and Black Point Marina during the Columbus Day weekend celebrations.

“Historically, we have had a slow-speed zone in the area, but it’s been centered mostly in the northern part of the Biscayne Bay,” said Lt. Mike Cortese, Commanding Officer of U.S. Coast Guard Station Miami Beach. “We have extended it south all the way to Black Point [Marina] to help cover the high-traffic areas between the Elliot Key and the marinas where boaters often launch out of.”

It's been 521 years since the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus "sailed the ocean blue/in fourteen hundred and ninety-two." Since then, there have been thousands of parades, speeches and statues commemorating Columbus, along with a critical rethinking of his life and legacy.

But the question remains, how did a man who never set foot on North America get a federal holiday in his name? While Columbus did arrive in the "New World" when he cast anchor in the Bahamas, he never made it to the United States.