On November 28th it was American Thanksgiving Day. Whilst every year the day of thanks can either be celebrated, disputed, or evoke political correctness / incorrectness; as always, I decide to embrace traditions that are part and parcel of the maintaining, making and the re-making of culture, traditions, and also taking the time to remember historical truths. But on the day of thanksgiving, like every year, I don’t bring / write about the contested truths on public platforms. As I think that it is important to embrace each others happiness – re-thinking how we could view thanksgiving day as an opportunity? Whilst we can use thanksgiving day to evoke historical truths, but the truth is that historical truths repeat and happen to this very day. Maybe not in the form that took place during the time of the settlers / pilgrims, and Native Americans. But even today: if we decide to go against a particular public opinion, possess political opinions that are not accepted as macro-levels, or even with our affiliation with nation-state, we will be detested, hurt, harmed. Publicly, privately, directly and indirectly. Will others cry out for your personal harassment, and make a public outcry for you? Maybe or maybe not, or maybe someone could careless about you? But what brings care to the forefront is, the decision to care.
We can protest the historical roots, political correctness / incorrectness on the day of thanksgiving, we can also wonder how individual harassment, bullying and conflicts happen that are ignored and shoved to the side, because views don’t match. We are called to question the very core of human nature. What is happening to human nature, human spirits, when humans are seeking to destroy each other, through physical and psychological warfare and the creation of hate? Just because political views, personal opinions don’t align? It reveals narrow-mindedness, the need to search for understandings. We must be able to have the freedom to possess different views without feeling fearful or victimized. For instance: I love The White House tradition of the Turkey Pardon. It is nice to have some fun and the additional lighter tone, that is deserved from the heaviness of the political world. But even as Thanksgiving is known as Turkey day, I didn’t cook turkey. Should I be condemned for this?
I didn’t cook Turkey for two reasons: 1) The Turkey bird is too big and would have been too much for me and my family. But this is not to say I don’t like eating Turkey. YUMMY! Maybe Christmas will serve as another opportunity? 2) The second reason was probably from the political stance of Turkey’s military operations in Syria. Whilst the military initiatives maybe aimed to target the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) terrorists, these invasions and civil wars are killing and injuring human lives each and every day.
Even whilst knowing the multi-faceted views of American Thanksgiving, we wonder: how can we move forward with the creation of paths for peace?Tweet
I understand that educators / teachers and scholars have a duty to teach history and historical truths, however; how involved they become as a political, public object is also their choice. As is the choice and duty for teachers / educators / scholars to seek out ways to: construct, create, seek and spread knowledge that can assist to build bridges for peace. The important point to remember here is that learners have to know why peace is needed first, thus; the learning of the history and historical truths.
I for one have learned much about Colonization. I’m not saying there is no room to learn more, because there is always the need and hunger to learn more. But it would also be nice to learn the importance of other views – such as: thankfulness for the harvest, agricultural industries that enable food on the table, the very gifts of nature, or even Jennie Augusta Brownscombe. What was her vision and why were pieces of knowledge left out from within my own learning?
It is with these reflective thoughts and questions I conclude these thoughts for now. I do feel upset and unsettled, that i’ve had to explain my reason / rationale for simply wishing everyone who celebrates, American Thanksgiving on Thanksgiving day a Happy Thanksgiving, with the experience of personal conflict, harassment, psychological warfare, through the creation of hate. But I must remain hopeful.
My thoughts to share with love & Kindness! 🙂
*Notes: These thoughts were originally hand-written on December 1st, 2019