The resentment isn't confined to native Americans, either. Many Latin American countries, including Mexico, call October 14 Dia de la Raza, or "Day of the Race," but the intent there is the same, to counteract the idea that a European called Columbus "discovered" something that was here all along.
What the day is called depends on who has the political clout to own it. In Costa Rica, where there is a close balance of all races, October 14 is "Dia de las Culturas," or "Day of the Cultures," and recognizes all the African, European, native American and Asian cultures that make up the Americas.
Just as Columbus Day keeps some people away from work, of course, it means others work harder than ever. This is especially true in retailing, where car dealers, malls and outlets have made it a tradition to advertise specials.
Columbus Day is a postal holiday; no mail will be delivered by USPS.
FedEx and UPS will provide normal pickup and delivery services on Columbus Day. Follow @DanaBlankenhor This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.