PHILADELPHIA — A federal appeals court upheld a lower court’s dismissal of a lawsuit alleging that the mayor of Philadelphia discriminated against Italian-Americans in renaming the city’s Columbus Day holiday to Indigenous Peoples Day.
A U.S. District Court judge ruled a year ago that the plaintiffs, city council members and three Italian-American heritage groups, were not harmed by Mayor Jim Kenny’s Executive Order to file a lawsuit on the issue. I have ruled that I am not qualified.
Writing on Friday for a three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, Judge David Porter said the government “does not violate the Equal Protection Clause whenever it affirms or celebrates ethnicity.” Without it, Columbus Day itself might have violated equal protection, but of course it didn’t.”
As it stands, “Irish-American city officials who want to celebrate St. Patrick must have a personal day,” and the city may close for Yom Kippur or give them time off for Lunar New Year. No, the court said.
Plaintiffs could sue if the city celebrates all ethnicities but “significantly excludes” Italian-Americans and doesn’t selectively celebrate only certain ethnicities, the court said. For plaintiffs seeking remedies for such “crimes,” the court said, “Their remedies are political rather than legal.”
Attorney George Bochet, who filed the lawsuit, said: Said The Philadelphia Inquirer said in an email Friday evening that although the plaintiff is disappointed, he has “every intent” to appeal the matter to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Many Italian-Americans have embraced the 15th-century explorer — once hailed as the discoverer of America — as a cultural hero and a symbol of the city’s deep Italian heritage. Kenny says that despite centuries of worship, Columbus had a “far more notorious” history, enslaving natives and inflicting harsh punishments.
Bochet’s lawsuits while on vacation include an attempt to cover up and remove a Columbus statue in south Philadelphia and an attempt to remove a statue of former mayor and police commissioner Frank Rizzo in the city hall building near the city. citing the city’s pattern of targeting Italian-Americans. Hall after being subject to protest.
Bochet won When state court filed another lawsuit against the city last month ordered to remove Photo of the box covering the Columbus statue in South Philadelphia. Built in 1876, the statue was gifted to the city by the Italian-American community on the occasion of its centenary, but became the focus of racial justice protests after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis. After becoming covered in June 2020.
Kenny argued for the statue’s removal as a matter of public safety, and the city’s Arts and History Commissions agreed, but the judge found a lack of evidence that the statue’s removal was necessary to protect the public. The box covering the statue was painted with green, white, and red bands before it was removed. italian flagat the request of a city council member representing the district.
https://www.mcall.com/news/pennsylvania/mc-nws-pa-philadelphia-mayor-columbus-day-20230128-dbahygksn5e2rpvm7lumzllefq-story.html#ed=rss_www.mcall.com/arcio/rss/category/news/pennsylvania/ Philadelphia Columbus Day Name Change Lawsuit Dismissed – The Morning Call