Rachel McGonagill
Writin' & Bloggy Stuff

Get Email Updates

Rachel's Webpage
Rachel at Livejournal

Making Light
Greg van Eekhout
Sherwood Smith
David Moles
Jay Lake
John Burridge
James Nicoll
Neil Gaiman
Steven Brust
John Scalzi
Respectful of Otters
Maureen McHugh
Nihilistic Kid
Scott Lynch
John Joseph Adams
Nalo Hopkinson
Elizabeth Bear
Qwerty Ranch
Miss Snark
Anna Louise
The Evil Editor
Viable Paradise
Boing Boing
Ralan's Webstravaganza
The Rumor Mill
Email Me

Admin Password

Remember Me

367484 Curiosities served
Share on Facebook

Turkey Day
Previous Entry :: Next Entry


Read/Post Comments (2)

Me and the hubby are going north a few miles (about 300) to spend Turkey Day with his sister and her husband, their kids and grandkids. Should be a full house. I'm of two minds about celebrating Thanksgiving as a "Pilgrims and Indians Get Along and Have a Big Feast Day," and have been for a long while. My reasons:

1. I lived in Plymouth, MA before I moved to Oregon, and took part in a few protest marches on T-Day itself, with hundreds of people who believe that it should be a National Day of Mourning. After all, just because there may have been a feast, where all the colonials hung out with their neighbors and chowed down on roast beast, doesn't mean things didn't go fairly quickly to hell in a handbag afterwards. Or that they hadn't even before that.

2. It wasn't 50 years after the Pilgrims first landed that the entire region erupted in King Philip's War, and almost all the land not already in the Europeans' hands was lost at this time. The Wampanoag People got pretty short shrift from the colonists . . . those that were left, anyway, after European diseases wiped out many entire villages. Genocide is an ugly word, but it's an apt one to use for what happened from the 1500 - late 1800s. "Want, Take, Have," was the motto of many colonists, and even the American government.

Sound familiar?

3. I'm a root-for-the-underdog kind of person, and even if I didn't have a bit of Mi'kmaq blood in me, I'd still detest the way the Indians were treated back in the day, . . . and how they're still portrayed in modern films, books and news articles. When I was in school, all the Indians we saw in books or tv wore headdresses and war paint, and even when we dressed up to reenact the First Thanksgiving in kindergarden, those of us in the Indian costumes had cut-out paper feathers in our hair, which was not the fashion for the Wampanoag. When I worked at Plimoth Plantation one year, the hardest part was dealing with stereotypes and re-educating children who came tearing down the hill war-whooping, about the actualities of Wampanoag customs and dress. Take a gander at "Smoke Signals" sometime, or read any of Sherman Alexie's works, for instance, and you'll understand (from the contrast) what I mean.

So yeah, Turkey Day. It's fun to load up on food and spend time with family, but I try not to forget whose backs we broke, climbing up to the dinner table.

Read/Post Comments (2)

Previous Entry :: Next Entry

Back to Top

Powered by JournalScape © 2001-2010 JournalScape.com. All rights reserved.
All content rights reserved by the author.