Most Americans consider Thanksgiving to be the holiday that we celebrate our thanks and blessings. We think that it’s a time for family, and for food. We are in the gratitude mode that we post pictures on Facebook and call it “The Thankful Challenge” and we list off something each day we are grateful for.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE to count my blessings, but let’s not pretend that this is ACTUALLY what Thanksgiving was founded on.
The other day I saw this meme on Facebook saying, “Thanksgiving was a day where pilgrims gave indigenous people food and they all shared a meal together.” I was shocked by how many people actually shared that meme and flaunted just how awesome it was.
Let’s not forget that there is some truth to that saying, but let’s also not forget that the Native American population was then brutally murdered out of greed and entitlement when the meal was over.
Let’s not forget that Native Americans were given a full meal thinking they were celebrating how well the harvest season was the previous year, only then later slaughtered so the “white people” could benefit.
They tell you about how creative and wonderful Christopher Columbus was in elementary school, but they don’t ever speak about the mass genocide that he had to commit to actually find “the new world.” Same with Thanksgiving, they talk to you about gratitude and the importance of family, but they don’t speak of what happened after the feast.
This Thanksgiving I truly do hope everyone practices gratitude, and you appreciate the love around you. I hope everyone admires on another and they not only stand for peace, but promote it too. However, I hope that you also think about the others who were oppressed on this day, and how their family members are still fighting for clean water. I hope that everyone is humble, and I hope that when you gather around the table to give thanks, you at least acknowledge what really happened on this day, and you spread some unity and empathy out into the hearts that were hurt, and still continue to hurt.