Date: 21 Nov 2007, 01:22 PM
Thanks and Giving
Thanksgiving as an American holiday has the potential to be a noble one. Especially if those in celebration remember the 2nd and more important component of the day which is the "giving", = notice the word "eating" is nowhere in the title.
But citizens should also not fool themselves and drop this ridiculous romanticized notion of the Pilgrims and the Indians breaking bread together. As Bill Maher says:
"Americans celebrating Thanksgiving is like a date rapist saying: 'you know, let's focus on the nice dinner we had before hand.'"
Thanksgiving's true historical roots are in fact ghastly and abhorrent:
The first day of thanksgiving took place in 1637 amidst the Pilgrims war against the Pequots. 700 men, women, and children of the Pequot tribe were gathered for their annual green corn dance on what is now Groton, Connecticut. Dutch and English mercenaries surrounded the camp and proceeded to shoot, stab, butcher and burn alive all 700 people. The next day the Massachusetts Bay Colony held a feast in celebration and the governor declared "a day of thanksgiving." In the ensuing madness of the Indian extermination, natives were scalped, burned, mutilated and sold into slavery, and a feast was held in celebration every time a successful massacre took place. The killing frenzy got so bad that even the Churches of Manhattan announced a day of "thanksgiving" to celebrate victory over the "heathen savages," and many celebrated by kicking the severed heads of Pequot people through the streets like soccer balls.
As the African proverb states: "Until lions have their historians, tales of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter".
… Thus Americans would be wise to remember the "true" history of how this nation came to be and not insult Native Americans by continuing the infantile myth of a "Thanksgiving feast between happy Indian and Pilgrim." After doing this … I believe that Americans can try and salvage the spirits of 'Thanks' and 'Giving' by showing appreciation to those around you and seeking to help others.
So on Thursday rather than seeing "how much you can eat" ... try and see "how much you can give."