Thursday, November 24, 2011

Nothing else but to say it.....

I want to wish everyone in the US a happy Thanksgiving.

For those of you outside of the US, I wish to relate to you a common misconception that is taught to children in the US about Thanksgiving.  When I was in grade school, I remembered being taught that Thanksgiving was created when the Pilgrims and the Native Americans got together.  As Americans, we were taught that the Pilgrims needed food and were starving and out of nowhere, some Native Americans (we were taught to call them Indians) came by with food and they sat down outside for a big picnic with turkey, cranberries and sweet potatoes.

The fact is a big more refined.  The Pilgrims lived by the seashore and most likely didn't have turkey but had plenty of fish and lobster, mussels and other shellfish.  They had some smaller birds, maybe venison and maybe sweet potatoes.  They were Native Americans and while Columbus called them "Indians", because he thought he had sailed around the world and landed at India, the tribe that was likely there was the Wampanoag Tribe.  Another piece of history could have been created because the leader of this tribe was very smart and noticed that among his possible enemies, it would have been easier to help the new Settlers so that he may have an ally against his enemies.  

One idea is that the day was first celebrated by the Spanish, in the 1600's as a "thanks to God" for delivering them safely to the new world.  But the idea of the Natives helping the Pilgrims is in fact a true one but wasn't on this day of Thanksgiving and instead was just a 3 day harvest celebration.  It wasn't until President Lincoln created the first Thanksgiving in 1863 as a way of saying thanks to God for a good harvest and health.  He proclaimed it to be a national holiday and has remained the last Thursday in November, ever since.

Also, since 1970, a group of Native Americans started a day of morning on Thanksgiving because of the large amount of Native Americans who were killed by Americans as a direct protest of this day.  As far as football is concerned, I think that the NFL or whoever does football, thought that since families would all be together it would work to get games televised for the most viewers.  I hate football, so I don't know about that.

So, there are some quick ideas and since the Internet is at your disposal, take a look around and see how much Thanksgiving has been created and tweaked to make it the event that we celebrate today.

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