• Christina Peña

Thankful for...

The other day we celebrated Thanksgiving. A day where we celebrate what we are thankful for. Or if you believe our history book, it is a day where people of different colors and heritages sat down to feast together. Something a white history book obviously taught us. Realistically we will never know what happened on that day. But you can bet it wasn’t full of rainbows, optimism, and turkey.

As I sat in my kitchen getting ready to cook a fantastic meal, I truly wonder why we celebrate this holiday. What is the reason? Why this day? When we have heard all the stories of what really happened on Thanksgiving. It almost leaves me as gobsmacked as when someone says they celebrate Columbus Day.

I get that people have rebranded the idea of Thanksgiving as a day in which we just celebrate what we are thankful for, but the roots run deep for some of us. I have learned over the last few years that I am an Indigenous person. It is a part of myself that I have never gotten to connect with, nor do I understand what it truly means. That chance was taken from me, by the people that benefited from Thanksgiving.

The month of November is actually Native American Month, a celebration that was not established until 1990. Almost 400 years after the original Thanksgiving. Why did it take us this long? What is it about the past of Indigenous people, that creates a space where people don’t want to talk about it? I encourage you to take a moment this week and think about it.

I don’t know the answer or what the right thing to do is. But if you still believe that Pochahontas got her happily ever after, then maybe you need more help than you think.

Shout out to Little Graye Bakery run by small business owner, Lisa Graye, she is donating 20% of her proceeds for Black Friday to Warrior Women Project. An organization dedicated towards providing four for current native activists to share their stories.

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