Rethinking “Thanksgiving”: Why Tomorrow Is a “National Day of Mourning”

This is predicated on the Rethinking “Thanksgiving” Toolkit developed by the Indigenous Solidarity Network, which was created initially for white individuals to suppose extra clearly about settler colonialism.  You can discover the toolkit in its entirety right here.

Thanksgiving is a time of gathering collectively within the United States for many individuals; a time of household, associates, meals, and fellowship.  For some additionally it is a time of loneliness, a time when the dearth of household connections, lack of assets, and lack of housing, and fundamental requirements turns into much more painful.  And for some, for individuals who search to honor the Indigenous individuals of Turtle Island, of Aztlan, additionally it is know because the National Day of Mourning. 

Thanksgiving because it has been celebrated has had a lengthy historical past of whitewashing genocide and has included huge quantities of disrespect for Native peoples, and a great amount of cultural appropriation.  The Indigenous Solidarity Network, began by the group for white solidarity, Standing Up For Racial Justice, or SURJ, has  a sequence of reflection factors that are shared right here.  In the midst of the vacation season, let’s all make a level to take time to honor the true historical past of this land, the true struggles of Indigenous individuals, and mourn the losses whereas we orient ourselves to how we may be in solidarity and battle for justice.

ADDRESS FOUNDATIONAL MYTHS BEHIND THANKSGIVING

Be clear about the true origins of Thanksgiving, and the lies about its origins.  While youngsters are taught myths about Pilgrims and “Indians” consuming a massive meal collectively, the fact is that’s a whitewashing of genocide.

KNOW WHOSE LAND YOU ARE ON

Be clear about the truth that we’re all immigrants — or colonizer descendants — in America if we’re not Native American.  Know whose territory you might be in. There is a wonderful useful resource for this right here.

KNOW WHERE YOUR WATER, HEAT, ELECTRICITY & OTHER RESOURCES COME FROM

Be clear concerning the impression of taking assets from the land, land that has been occupied and colonized.  As the toolkit states, “Colonialism is the root of climate chaos – which is now threatening the future of all people.”

KNOW YOUR FAMILY’S HISTORY

If you might be white, and reside within the U.S., be clear about the true story behind your loved ones historical past. Take the time to know your loved ones’s relationship to the land on which you reside.  Many of us need to have a good image of our household historical past, however the actuality is that now 98% of land within the United States is owned by white individuals, and it’s occupied land. 

CHALLENGE CULTURAL APPROPRIATION

Be clear concerning the devastating penalties of colonialism and do what you’ll be able to to withstand and stop the continuing theft of tradition and cultural house from Indigenous individuals. As the toolkit quotes: “The Red Nation writes in their 10 point program: ‘These appropriations contribute to the ongoing erasure of Native peoples and seek to minimize the harsh realities and histories of colonization. These appropriations are crimes against history.’”

UNDERSTAND WHAT CHRISTIANITY HAS TO DO WITH JUSTIFYING LAND THEFT

Be clear that the settler colonialism that has destroyed the planet has been given non secular justification.

ENGAGE IN LOCAL STRUGGLES AND BUILD RELATIONSHIPS

Be clear that motion is critical, and it needs to be carried out with humility and in a spirit of following the lead and steerage of Indigenous individuals.

WORK FOR REPATRIATIONS OF LAND AND INDIGENOUS SOVEREIGNTY

Be clear that there’s a actual aim of repatriation of land and restoral of Indigenous sovereignty and work to assist and actualize these targets, following the lead and route of Indigenous individuals.

In Conclusion:

The whole toolkit is a should learn for anybody who needs to take critically the results of settler colonialism for non-Native individuals within the United States.  It is simply too lengthy to incorporate right here in its entirety, and needs to be visited straight on the net. 

May Allah forgive my errors and overlook my shortcomings in my annotation of the toolkit, and should the battle of Indigenous individuals now and sooner or later be granted tawfiq.  In solidarity, from Unceded Occupied Ohlone Territory.

See Also


To study, extra register for the webinar to be held on November 26.

SURJ details about the toolkit:

ABOUT THIS TOOLKIT

Visit showingupforracialjustice.org/indigenous-solidarity to seek out a copy of this toolkit, our vacation hotline, and different assets.

INDIGENOUS SOLIDARITY NETWORK

The Indigenous Solidarity Network initially grew out of SURJ, Catalyst and folks work at Standing Rock and following ongoing solidarity efforts with Standing Rock combating the DAPL pipeline and to guard the water.  It has since change into a community to share assets, and actions for non-native individuals to be in solidarity with indigenous struggles.  We host quarterly video calls, ship e-mail updates, and motion alerts.  Join the e-mail listing to maintain up to date by emailing [email protected]

Indigenous Solidarity Network members: Berkley Carnine, Dylan Cooke, Scott Davis, Roger Drew, Z! Haukeness, Griffen Jeffries

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

We want to thank the people to whom we’re accountable and supplied constructive suggestions within the crafting of this toolkit: Betty Lyons – Onondaga Nation, Barb Munson – Oneida, Chasity Salvador – Acoma Pueblo, Corrine Sanchez – San Ildefonso Pueblo, Tara Trudell – Santee Sioux/Rarámuri.

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