Every year Americans go through the thoughtless rituals on this Thanksgiving Day without actually knowing anything about the Pilgrims, the Mayflower Compact, or the society the Puritans established in Massachusetts. In an ironic twist of fate, millions of Americans sit down to a turkey feast in order to celebrate the religious freedom of early settlers. It is a serious mistake to practice holidays based on false history while deceiving ourselves into justifying what those horrible people did.
Forinstance, the good Christian folk of Massachusetts showed what they meant by Christian love, when they adopted laws against the Baptists, who were treated with genuine cruelty. The Quakers were also persecuted mercilessly, being murdered, whipped, imprisoned, branded or banished.
It should surprise no one that a society that worships the Pilgrims -- who ruthlessly scalped the Indians (teaching them how to do it), who indiscriminately torched Indian villages, and murdered their women, children and elders -- should produce children who grow up to sanction water boarding, imprisonment without charges or a jury trial and unjustified war and attacks on other soverign nations. Or creating many local, state and federal religious laws to control all people under misguided morals.
Instead, Americans can salvage this Day of Thanksgiving, as a day of personal atonement. A day when the individual looks within, and takes stock of his or her actions. We must summon courage, and be bold, and celebrate the ancient customs that guarantee us freedom, despite eras of institutional domination. So with that, have a Happy Thanksgiving.
We find comfort among those who agree with us - growth among those who don't. -- Frank A. Clark
©2012, A Different Perspective