Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

Good Thanksgiving Eve,

Tomorrow will be a big day for most of us. We will likely share a big turkey dinner with all the trimmings and the guys will watch football while the ladies wash dishes and chat in another room, and plan their shopping for Black Friday.

Why is it called Black Friday? I am not sure, but I think it is to remind us all of the stock market crash back in the 20s. Uh. Do we want to go there given America’s financial pickle? Better not.

I understand Congress has designated the day after Thanksgiving as Native American Day. I think that is interesting, but since I have a Native American heritage, not at all that flattering. Who wants to celebrate an earth-based holiday on the most commercial day of the year? Who thought up that big idea anyway?

Think about it. There wouldn’t even be a day of thanksgiving – or a country if it had not been for the Native Americans who helped their visitors from Europe how to survive in the forests and shores of what evolved to be the United States of America.

I am thankful for my ancestors, both the ones who sailed here to find a new way of life, and to the ones who met the boats. I don’t think my native ancestors would be all that tickled with the way things turned out. Somewhere along the line, the ideal of living without persecution and being able to worship as one pleased got turned around. My native ancestors were persecuted and massacred, scalped for bounties and pushed onto ever more worthless pieces of real estate. In some places, native people were even enslaved.

Where is the gratitude in that? My native ancestors taught my white ancestors how to build shelters and plant food. My white ancestors took their land, their freedom and their right to worship as they pleased. What, I ask, makes some people more entitled than any others? Can someone explain that to me?

The Native Americans were not the only individuals who suffered as this country evolved. Other ethnic minorities were used harshly and enslaved. Some of them celebrate their evolution with as long as a month of commemoration while the Native Americans get to share one day with a commercial spend-feast. Ugh!

Today’s image is a Dawn Tarr creation that she painted for the cover of my newest novel, Chesapeake Legacy, which will be in print by Write Words, Inc. this winter. The novel deals with prejudice, and tells the story of a woman who was not allowed to live among the European residents because she had native blood. She gets pushed around a lot. Life is like that. Sound familiar?

I hope all of you remember the role Native Americans played in the birth of this nation. They were there for us, and it would be nice if we could be there for them at last.

Have a blessed day,


1 comment:

  1. happy thanksgiving... i agree about the native american day.. strange indeed.
    love the blogging you are doing.. keep writing, incredible work!


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