COLUMN: Flipping the bird and exposing the Thanksgiving Day lie

With all the talk today about fake news, how to spot it, and how to think critically when it comes to assessing information, consider this a topical and seasonal warning…

Thanksgiving is a big, so-fat-you-have-to-undo-your pants, lie.

The Thanksgiving stories and images which fed our young minds are fairy tales crafted for political gain.

The tradition of giving thanks, of course, has to be considered fundamental and universal, also largely pietistical.

Most cultures have always celebrated good fortune, one way or another.

Canada can’t help get the breezes from south of the border. Our images of Thanksgiving, to say nothing of a whole lot of other really other horrible ideas, are this way.

Days of thanksgiving, “down there,” were celebrated in various forms in different colonies and at different times beginning as early as the seventeenth century.

But it wasn’t until 1863, in the midst of the American Civil War, that Abraham Lincoln declared a national day of Thanksgiving, to be held each year in November. Its unfulfilled purpose – promoting unity.

Later Franklin Roosevelt tried to move the day, in order to better encourage retail sales during the depression. The name Franksgiving was coined.

Deeply moving.

This much is documented. Approximately 100 people left England on the Mayflower in 1620, seeking, of all absurdities, religious freedom. The next year those remaining alive (about half) held a three day feast and partied with native peoples. Those peoples had helped the newcomers adapt, taught them to tap for maple syrup and grow corn.

The guest contribution to this gathering included disease, weapons, imperialism and probably (shiver) brussel sprouts.

For the past 50 years Native Americans of New England have marked that country’s Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of the eleventh month with a protest named “The National Day of Mourning.”

Who wants pie?

Our nation’s Thanksgiving history is kinder and gentler. Of course.

According to The Canadian Encyclopedia the first Thanksgiving celebrated by Europeans here occurred in 1578, when Sir Martin Frobisher and his crew arrived safely in what is now Nunavut. They gave thanks for their survival by dining on salt beef, biscuits and mushy peas.

Various regions thereafter recognized days of thanksgiving, generally associated with harvest and the church. In 1872, after Confederation, Thanksgiving was declared a civic as opposed to a religious holiday and it was held April 5.

This first official Thanksgiving was offered in gratitude for the recovery of the Edward, Prince of Wales, after an illness.

(We were SUCH a suck-up colony.)

Parliament annually and occasionally arbitrarily set the date for Thanksgiving each year. For several years it was held on November 11, to coincide with Armistice Day. In 1931 that changed in order to rightly put the focus solely on veterans.

A long weekend is a long weekend. Enjoy it.

Also, just try being thankful for the good things in your life EVERY day.

To report a typo, email:
publisher@similkameenspotlight.com
.



andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon perfect getaway for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, mayor says

Family-oriented community also home to Royal interests; film and helicopter industries

Group builds shelters for Vernon’s stray cats

Twenty insulated cat shelters were constructed by volunteers and delivered around town

True Stories: memoir-writers, reading at Vernon centre

Reading with local North Okanagan writers Art Dalton, Patti Shales Lefkos, Raven Dahl, Janelle Hardy

WATCH: Don’t just blame AIM, all North Okanagan road crews struggling

City streets are just as bad, if not worse, than highways

Several deer spotted in Vernon’s BX

One resident spotted a herd of seven in her neighbourhood

Older Canadians highlighted in Kelowna film project to fight ageism

The project is part of a campaign to combat ageism

Closed mills, housing surge support a positive forecast for lumber industries

B.C. lumber producers have closed mills accounting for 18% of province’s capacity, RBC report says

Good Samaritan pays part of rent for B.C. woman facing eviction in can-collecting dispute

Zora Hlevnjak, 76, supplements her pension by collecting cans and receiving public donations

Princeton – a Prince Town in waiting?

The Town of Princeton has been waiting 160 years for a Royal… Continue reading

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on the move… to Kelowna?

The royal couple is looking for some new digs and Kelowna has a lot to offer!

UBCO partners with Boeing to test new anti-ice coating technology

The coating could one day be applied to all airplanes to prevent ice buildup

Revelstoke already double last year’s snowfall

The city is just below halfway to the snowiest winter on record

Kelowna’s last video store, Leo’s Videos, to remain open despite failed sale

Kelowna’s last video rental store will remain open and under its namesake’s ownership

COLUMN: Choosing a face to show the world

It will not be easy to select the face to display on Canada’s new $5 bill

Most Read