Hope you’re all having a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones! To those of you who may not be able to celebrate surrounded by love, for whatever reason, know that you’re in my thoughts and I’m sending so much love your way.
While we’re celebrating this day with delicious food and surrounded by love, I hope that we can decolonize the tradition of Thanksgiving by remembering the Native Americans who lost their homes and their lives. Thanksgiving was actually declared a national holiday by Abraham Lincoln as an effort to bring the country together during the tensions of the civil war. The story of the ‘Indians and the Pilgrims’ was not associated with the holiday until the 1890s. And the story of them eating together peacefully and celebrating this newfound friendship is completely false – the Native Americans living on this land were displaced and killed (either directly or by the European diseases the pilgrims brought with them). This video by MTV does a pretty great job of summarizing the issues with the ‘history’ of Thanksgiving. And if you’d like more details about how this tradition came about and would like to see facts to debunk the stories that we’re told in grade school, this article does a pretty rad job. So while we celebrate and think about what we’re grateful for this year, let’s keep those who suffered at the hands of the European immigrants in our thoughts and prayers and remember to be grateful for their sacrifice.