Why we SHOULDN’T be thankful for Thanksgiving

Myajah Wilson, Assistant Opinion Editor

America has a funny way of covering up the things that might question its moral authority. 

During most of our childhoods we grew up watching Disney films, unaware of the fact that we weren’t getting the full story. Each Disney film was derived from a more dark backstory.

To an extent, it’s understandable. I mean, who would want to read about mermaids taking their own lives or princesses getting sexually assaulted?

Similarly, Americans cling onto the history that we are taught, as it might be uncomfortable to accept and acknowledge reality; we’re forever chasing the fantasy of America. We’re trying to maintain an innocent view on the world, but as life goes on, we have to realize that things aren’t so black and white.

As kids most of us were all taught multiple things. When it comes to morals that we should have, we were taught to be kind, empathetic, grateful, and of course so many other things. We were taught to detest racism and speak out against things that are wrong.

Considering that, how can we celebrate a holiday that contradicts all of those things?

As a kid, I would always look forward to Thanksgiving. The idea of celebrating, spending time with family and of course, eating some of my favorite dishes always excited me. 

I remember in elementary school we would dress up as Native Americans and Pilgrims to commemorate the holiday and its backstory. This school as well as other schools that participated in this had young children thinking that we were doing something positive, but in a sense it was cultural appropriation and borderline wrong. 

From a young age it was embedded in our minds that Thanksgiving was a heroic story where different cultures could put aside their differences and come together, but in reality it truly was the complete opposite. 

As I’m older now, I have matured and the way that I view the world has changed. I came to the realization that celebrating “Thanksgiving” isn’t exactly morally right after learning it’s true  dishonorable backstory.

If we look back into history, we can uncover what truly happened. As children we learned that Thanksgiving originated due to a joyous feast between the Native Americans and Pilgrims that ultimately brought them together. 

While the feast did occur, afterwards the Pilgrims slaughtered the Native Americans and stole their land. Why is it that the key details are always kept out?

People have found a way to glorify a day that ended in tragedy. The question that we need to be asking ourselves here is: why are we celebrating a day of grievance? 

Now, I’m not saying that we should completely abolish the holiday, rather we should use it as a day to bring us all together in such a divided society.  

Instead of taking time on Thanksgiving to honor its wicked past, we need to gain a new perspective on the holiday. We should take the day to recognize the Native Americans and the lives that were lost, reflect on our own lives and give thanks where they are due to different things in our lives.

We can’t just turn a blind eye to the holiday’s history because of how long ago it was.

If cancel culture is so prevalent right now, why aren’t we cancelling the things that need to be cancelled. 

We need to stop living in a fairytale and see what is actually behind the curtain.