Padma Lakshmi Fans Are Loving Her Controversial Christopher Columbus Repost

This year, October 11 was officially declared Indigenous Peoples' Day by President Joe Biden, marking the first time a U.S. president acknowledged the holiday that was previously observed as Columbus Day. (Though, according to the Office of Personnel Management, Columbus Day is still recognized by the federal government.)

There are, of course, two sides to every story, and NPR shares that Columbus Day has significant symbolic importance for many Italian-Americans who view Columbus as a source of pride — Columbus Day was first declared a national day of celebration in 1892, at a time when Italian immigrants were subject to persecution. (Which, of course, is not to downplay the suffering of indigenous peoples or the formerly enslaved.)

Though, as Cherokee Nation Chief Wilma Mankiller pointed out to NPR, even if Columbus intended no harm to the natives he encountered, he nevertheless doesn't deserve credit for "discovering" a land that was already inhabited. 

Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi made it known where she stands on the matter by reposting a meme on Instagram, and it's clear she's not Team Columbus. The post shares a 2020 tweet from Ziwe which reads, "Throw every Christopher Columbus statue in the ocean and let that dizzy b***h think he discovered Atlantis." Lakshmi captioned the post wishing her followers "Happy Indigenous Peoples' Day."

Most of Lakshmi's followers seemed to agree with her stance

Many of the comments on Lakshmi's Instagram post were supportive of her sentiments, as well as those of the original Tweet. One follower took Cherokee Nation Chief Wilma Mankiller's viewpoint, saying, "I wish I could get credit for discovering s*** that tens of thousands had before — can I take credit for Twitter or mayonnaise?" Another one-upped Lakshmi's comment, calling Columbus "a terrible person." Others seemed to find Lakshmi's repost quite the laugh riot with lines like, "Omg I just fell out at work" and, "I am cackling." 

Not every follower fully agreed with Lakshmi, however. One person said, "Let's not throw more trash in the ocean" (a sentiment several others echoed), while another opined, "Instead of focusing on 'rewriting history,' how about changing today."

Of course on social media there are no last words, and the debate on the topic is still ongoing.