This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Seems to me, we palefaces of European descent have forgotten, or ignored, what we Americans did to African people. We kidnapped them, enslaved them, abused them, raped their women and destroyed the lives and families they were once able to control.

Have we forgotten, or ignored, what we Americans did to Native Americans who inhabited North America? We took their land and removed them to reservations, destroyed their history and culture and relegated them to the bottom of any rights they may have had to control their own destinies.

We were invaders, greedy and unconcerned about anyone but our own white selves. We have no right to claim America as ours, nor do those who think it is have any right to claim and destroy our public lands to make money for themselves.

Sometimes I feel ashamed of my white culture. Let us think about this continent, this planet and what we are doing to it and using it for. I hope my great-grandchildren have a chance to experience the best part of what and who we are, but I worry they'll only see the wreckage we've done.

Claudia Marques

Salt Lake City

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