Whose Thanksgiving?

So Today is Thanksgiving and all around me, I hear people saying “Happy Thanksgiving” and see them getting turkey dinners on their tables with all the trimmings, and welcoming in their guests and just being generally celebratory.

I wish that I felt it………..

I wish that I could have that holiday spirit too, but many of our friends are in mourning, Today.

They’re our Native American friends, and they’re watching to see how long it takes us to really understand what we’re celebrating. How long will it take us to realize that we’re celebrating our crime of genocide.

We’re here, because our ancestors invaded The Americas, and ruthlessly massacred the Native Americans that they couldn’t enslave or convert to Christianity………basically the same thing as slavery since it meant serfdom for the Native Americans that allowed themselves to be converted.

You may have thought that the to-do over Columbus Day was a big deal, with my “White” friends and Native American friends painting the hands of the Columbus statues in your state capitals and parks red.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/12/nyregion/christopher-columbus-statue-central-park-vandalized.html

Red to symbolize the blood of the Native Americans that we killed on the Trail of Tears, and with our “gifts” of smallpox infected blankets.

https://www.history.com/topics/native-american-history/trail-of-tears

https://www.history.com/news/colonists-native-americans-smallpox-blankets

Red to symbolize the Native American blood on ALL our hands, and to remind us of the over 500 treaties that our government has broken between us and the Native American People.

https://www.ozy.com/flashback/when-native-americans-got-arrested-for-their-right-to-washingtons-fish/220234/

Red to remind us of the Water Protectors killed or maimed by water cannons being shot at them, on a freezing cold night, because tRump wanted his oil pipeline put through Dakota Tribe land and water.

Another treaty broken……..

I wish that I could be joyfully enthralled by the smell of the turkey on the table, waiting for my Dad to finish his opening speech to our family, before the meal. I wish that the warmth would seep into my bones and fill me with that same spirit of the holidays that makes those around me so jolly.

Instead this holiday leaves me cold.

Having to say I’m grateful that my ancestors killed people for their land leaves a bad taste in my mouth that curdles my flan.

Some people can knowingly be that cold hearted:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_srCSQDeAD0

I can’t.

The best that I can do is pretend.

For one more year, I’ll pretend, for Mother’s sake, that I’m loving Thanksgiving, and feeling that turkey spirit, and grateful that my ancestors were brave enough to come across the sea, learn from the Native Americans what was good to eat and suffer through harsh seasons of farming, until they’d learned what would grow here.

I’ll pretend that I don’t know that the Thanksgiving story is a myth and that I don’t know about the Trail of Tears and the 500+ treaties that we broke and the Native American children that we kidnapped and adopted out to “American” families, complete with hair cuts and name changes.

https://www.vox.com/2019/10/14/20913408/us-stole-thousands-of-native-american-children

I’ll pretend to forget about the 300 Water Protectors, some of whom are my friends, who lost lives and limbs, trying to keep our oceans free of DAPL oil spills. But we have tRump, so we can’t have nice things like clean oceans that provide us with safe fish to eat:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/11/dakota-access-pipeline-spilled-oil-84-gallons-of-oil-in-south-dakota.html

I’ll pretend that I’m still blissfully unaware of the ongoing grand scale kidnapping of Native American women that gets no attention from our popular news media stations:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/07/us/native-american-women-missing-montana-trnd/index.html

I’ll sit there, at the dinner table, and PRETEND that I’m having a jolly good time……..for. One. More. Year.

What I’m really thankful for, is that my husband and I are going to have a brand new home, in which to have our own gatherings. I’m grateful that I’m getting to know some of California’s Native American people, so that I can welcome them into our home, and let them know that they’re welcome there, (since it is, after all, their land) and that the true accounting of American history isn’t forgotten.

I’m grateful that my Native American brothers and sisters have seen fit to be patient and understanding of my struggle to come to grips with the truth of our past, as a nation of invaders and to help me to disabuse others of the delusion of American tolerance and the idea that anyone can have the American dream, if they simply work for it.

The fact of the matter is that the American Dream is reserved for a privileged few. It always was.

Education (or the semblance of education) and immunity from justice can be bought. Likewise, our politicians can also be bought, as can their seats on the Congressional floor.

Black people and women had to fight for the right to vote, which means nothing since our politicians are bought.

……….No. I take it back. Until women and Black people won that right to, it wasn’t a right, but a “PRIVILEGE”. It was a privilege reserved for rich, White males, and many would still have it that way:

http://www.sullivan-county.com/news/mine/women_vote.htm

https://thinkprogress.org/utah-gop-official-grave-mistake-854206a69f40/

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2009/9/30/788150/-

https://lasvegassun.com/news/2013/oct/28/state-senator-says-hed-vote-slavery-if-his-constit/

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/12/7/16748038/roy-moore-slavery-america-great

http://www.modernliberals.com/half-of-trumps-supporters-want-slavery-back/

But I’ll sit there, at dinner, Tonight, and pretend to still believe in democracy and justice for all. I’ll close my eyes to the bigotry and hypocrisy of the evening’s festivities, while the current administration continues to monger hate and fear of The Other, and to undermine all we had done to become a great country up until 2016.

We weren’t perfect. We were still learning revisionist history, in regards to the plight of our Native American brothers and sisters, and bigotry was a thing, but now that bigotry has no fear of reprisal, since your very president gets away with it. It has infected schools, police districts and airports.

We were, until 2016, STARTING to be tolerant and even helpful to DREAMERS, Black People and poor people.

Sadly, now, no one is safe from the results of the negligence of our governing body.

School shootings are no longer shocking, because our politicians take NRA bribes for ignoring the need for improved gun control laws. Neither is police brutality or the sight of babies in cages surprisingly horrifying (or horrifyingly surprising). I could put links here, but there are simply too many, and I have to dress for Thanksgiving dinner.

CALIFORNIA CAN DO BETTER, AND THEREFORE……….SHE MUST.

The 7th and 8th of Dec. of 2019 Calexit will take another step in the right direction, for California. Feel free to tune in to our press conference. Watch my blog roll for the link after the 8th. Meanwhile, here is a link to the last press conference:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLXFdu9QbGzYXHo3Zd2HHRU4XJkuURAd2I

Enjoy your Thanksgiving.

Have a relevant link? Email to Suehirsch01@gmail.com

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Sue Hirsch

Activist, Author, Secular Humanist, National of California, Wife, Mom, Daughter