The Left’s Annual Thanksgiving Guilt Trip: A Guest Post by Time Foolery

Every year for awhile now, instead of thoughts of delicious food and giving thanks for our blessings, Thanksgiving brings up the usual standard SJW arguments about the persecution of First Nations tribes and before you know it, your happy annual dinner has devolved into a verbal fight, and worse, possibly a food fight!

It’s understandable for those who aren’t fully educated in the history of Thanksgiving to completely misunderstand the holiday and what it commemorates. They’ve been taught that the landing of the Pilgrims on Plymouth Rock was the beginning of 400 years of native oppression. But with a bit of education about the holiday and what it actually stands for, it suddenly becomes clear what they’re sorely missing.

I have the good fortune of being a direct descendant of Governor William Bradford, the first Guest of Honor at the first Thanksgiving, so the history of the Pilgrims is also my family history. My 11th great grandfather was the man who led the Pilgrims from England in search of a land where they would be free to practice their Puritan religion, which was frowned upon in England. Plus, they sought a place where they could live free of the decadent influences of their homeland. After trying out life in Amsterdam first, a lack of money led to the Pilgrims taking an offer of free transport and funding if they’d come to the New World and begin taming the wild land that would become the United States of America.

Unused to roughing it and trying to scrabble a living from virgin land, and supply missions from England being subject to delays, they found a friend in the Wampanoag Indians, who taught them what crops they could grow in the New England soil and helped them to hunt for food. In recognition of the great cooperation that had begun between the two cultures, they held a great feast of Thanksgiving for all the blessings they’d found, including their new allies. They even struck a treaty to protect each other against other raiding tribes!

So, how did a holiday built upon the cooperation of two cultures become the symbol of genocide? Especially after the colonies relied on some native tribes for their assistance in the Revolutionary War, and even more so after settlers began intermarrying with Indians! For all intents and purposes, the two cultures seemed destined to continue this great relationship.

For that answer, we need to fast forward a few centuries till we get to the first ostensibly Democrat president named Andrew Jackson. He and his party, the Democrat-Republicans (which became just Democrats after the Civil War), created the Indian Removal Act of 1830 that began forcing Native Tribes off their ancestral lands and onto reservations. This was done in an effort to give the government more land they could sell to settlers, and there was nothing they wouldn’t do to make a buck, including doing such dirty, underhanded tricks as giving tribes blankets that carried the smallpox virus. So not only did the Democrat Party start the genocide against First Nations peoples, but they did it for MONEY.

In light of the actual history of America’s treatment of Native Tribes, it is clear that the people who established the holiday of Thanksgiving had no responsibility for the choices our government made two centuries AFTER the inaugurating event. The first Thanksgiving was exactly what it was called, a day of giving thanks for your blessings, which the Pilgrims considered the Wampanoag to be one of their greatest gifts from God and thus honoured them by having them be full participants in the day. It was an event that never would’ve happened that first year without their help.

Thanksgiving was established as a national holiday by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 following the pivotal, and very bloody, Battle of Gettysburg. He wanted to give America a day in which they could join with their families and give thanks to Providence for all their blessings. It was an chance for the country to heal following the end of the war, not to mention the former slaves who had been freed from bondage. Ultimately, Thanksgiving was created as an equal opportunity holiday that was built upon the idea of different peoples coming together to create this great country. It was intended to not just bring families together, but to bring the entire country together after so much strife.

It is easy to blame the past for not being more “woke”, and to load up all national events with sinister intentions based on the cumulative outcome of another generation’s actions, but the new relationship that had begun between the two cultures that gathered to give thanks that original day in 1631 had nothing to do with what happened later on. Anyone who assigns such evil portents on a day when we, too, might show our appreciation to Providence for all we have received, is merely looking to destroy the most positive of holidays that actually highlights the spirit of cooperation between two 17th Century cultures, not the eventual result of 19th Century Democrat expansion.


Excellent points Time Foolery! I’ve mentioned time and time again how it’s not really about getting some form of restorative justice, but merely push an agenda using cherry picked history as an excuse. They do that with Columbus Day too, despite Columbus never having any direct contact with any Native Americans in the present day US! Then again, the Left is often the epitome of ingratitude when it comes to appreciating America and its values…

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(I’m 99.9% sure this is what went down 😉 )

Don’t be a Prisoner of Your Past

I’m sure everyone has heard this one! We all have things that happened to us in the course of our lives that were negative, unpleasant, sad, even deeply traumatic for some. However, the saying goes, don’t let your past define you. The legacy you inherited doesn’t have to be your children’s legacy. How the schoolyard bully treated you does not have to define the rest of your life. You don’t automatically have to be a drunk because that’s what mom or dad was. Or never find love because your parents couldn’t with each other. If you’ve been through some tragedy or trauma, you can get help to move on with life and not allow whatever happened to define who you are today.

For some people however, this “past” goes beyond what they’ve been through as individuals, but also includes what was done to your racial or ethnic group or even gender for example. I think we can all admit this country has some moments we aren’t so proud of. Slavery, conquest, racism, sexism, discrimination, exclusion, ostracism, etc. of certain groups historically. However despite the many social strides towards equality this country also has made to atone for and help eradicate the past hatred, prejudice and discrimination, some still argue that members of these historically oppressed groups have literally inherited the past trauma of their ancestors despite they themselves not having the same negative experiences as the previous generations. They call this “trans-generational trauma”, arguing the legacy left behind by historical oppression has somehow traumatized today’s generations.

Now here’s the thing: I understand about epigenetics and wondered if they are arguing that somehow a gene could have been turned off or on altering the next generation’s genetic makeup somehow due to the previous generation’s direct experience of trauma, but apparently that wasn’t necessarily the case that trans-generational trauma is biologically inherited. I also wondered if they thought a factor like the parent’s or grandparent’s experiences would reasonably influence what they told or how they raised the next generation who hadn’t been there as it is plausible. You will be affected to some degree by what a parent or other family member tells you growing up about what they went through or in how they raise you. That isn’t the whole of this “trans-generational trauma” thing either though! Apparently, the main factor cited was the younger generations are “traumatized” by guess what? Society!

Yep. The argument is the history of oppression by society in the past and alleged oppression today “traumatizes” people of historically oppressed groups. To give an example, one supporting the trans-generational trauma theory could argue that members of the black community are “traumatized” by slavery in the US that was abolished over a century ago, or that more recently, a millennial generation black person is somehow personally traumatized by the lynchings their great grandparents witnessed in the Jim Crow era despite never having any personal experience with lynchings other than in 2nd period US History! Now, I can agree that knowing your people were treated so heinously in the past would be very unsettling and disturbing. However to claim you have the same or comparable trauma as your great grandparent who was actually there? Is that reasonable?

Another example would be Native Americans. The US historically had many unfair policies and practices such as assimilation at boarding schools that wiped much of their own languages and cultures out. The reservation system was very corrupt. Sadly, many Native Americans today have many issues such as alcoholism, poverty, child abuse etc… May do claim trans-generational trauma. They say all their issues hearken back to historical policies that now have been overturned, such as boarding schools for them, or forcing them onto reservations although many choose to live on them now. They claim their history of oppression has led to their current poverty, alcoholism, health problems, etc… and left them traumatized. Only thing is, the younger generations have not personally been forced into boarding schools, have not been at historical events like Wounded Knee, have not been forced onto reservations preventing them from hunting the buffalo for example. No. They like most of America’s youth mourn the loss of their phone privileges more than the fact they as a people can no longer live a nomadic lifestyle on the plains! (Yes, before you cry “not all Indians were…” I know I’m talking mostly about the Plains Indians specifically  for the sake of brevity!).

Another point: Why is the past a valid reason to excuse poor behavior in the present? A community wants to improve and break the cycle, yet does nothing themselves because it feels historical oppression cursed them to a life of misery! To me, it’s like saying “I’m a drunk because my parents were drunks” as an excuse not to get treatment for your own addiction! “The white man oppressed me so I’m destined to act this way…” is the logic behind this.

Why can’t the past be in the past? Of course the past shapes our future, but it doesn’t define it! We can’t change what happened to us, but we can shape our future to be different learning from our past. We can choose to break the cycle. Choose to leave another legacy than oppression, poverty and victimhood to pass on to the next generation of our community. Your parent’s divorce doesn’t mean your marriage will end in divorce. You have no excuse to abuse another because you were abused. Most an agree with those statements. So why is it hard to make the leap to say your ancestors’ oppression is no excuse to not move forward as a community and make a clean slate for your children free from the baggage you may have carried in your past?

Honestly, I find it incredibly insulting and dishonoring to the struggles your ancestors had to claim that you too are traumatized by those events! Why? You were not there! My great-grandfather fled Armenia due to genocide by the Ottoman Empire. My Dad was his grandson, however he does not and has no right whatsoever to claim he was also a victim of the genocide his grandfather endured! My grandmother was relentlessly ostracized for being Armenian in her all Irish neighborhood yet I am not the one who has been traumatized and forever changed because of it because it was HER experience, NOT mine! Step back for a moment and think, isn’t it utterly belittling and disrespectful to those who have actually endured the worst history had to offer and claim it as your trauma? Your burden? To have the audacity to say it changed you? 

You are not the one who was a slave.

You are not the one in an internment camp.

You are not the one who was segregated all your life.

You are not the one killed at Wounded Knee or forced in a boarding school.

You are not the one who was forced to see your family killed in a genocide.

You are not the one who was denied their humanity in the worst ways.

Overall I find it incredibly insulting and disrespectful anyone dares to capitalize off their ancestors’ suffering to claim oppression for themselves. Frankly it’s sad anyone also would see themselves as a victim with only a legacy of oppression and victimhood to pass on to their children. No, contemporary society is not a utopia and prejudice still exists, but being focused in the present is a whole other story than being stuck in the past. Why not make the legacy you pass on to the next generation after you one of resilience, perseverance, independence and determination instead of perpetual victimhood and trauma from past wrongs done generations before their time? What child wants to sit on your lap and listen to how society hated them and always will and be taught certain people hate them? Leave a legacy of “victor-hood”, not victimhood!

Lastly, what sort of trauma might a generation of white people have over being the historical “oppressor” and “bad guy” when countless white people want to genuinely make change and leave their own legacy of love and acceptance rather than their ancestors’ alleged legacy of oppression and subjugation? Must they be defined by the sins of their forefathers? What about the historical oppression against other groups? Why don’t Italians, Germans, Irish etc… have this so called “Trans-generational trauma” from their history? After all, this isn’t about current trauma, but your ancestor’s trauma.

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Another Angle in The Appropriation Debate: Imagination and The Empathy That Comes With It

Halloween may be over, but the issue persists year round. The Left and cultural appropriation debates pop up especially around costumes which in one era were once innocuous fun, but now deemed as socially inappropriate, even dehumanizing! The main argument is that dressing as a culture not your own, especially if you’re white, stigmatizes and dehumanizes a culture as a caricature. Also, the argument one can simply take off a costume whereas the culture lives with the stigma and cannot simply stop being what they are is unfair to minorities.

I disagree with this stance in the majority of circumstances however I will say if a costume is deliberately meant to be insulting and degrading, mocking the culture on purpose then it is inappropriate. If you’re mostly doing it to be a jerk, then yeah, not cool… Thing is, the majority of circumstances are more complex or simply not at all about denigrating anyone even remotely! Most may not go so far as to “honor” a culture out of some deep personal respect, although some may be, but the majority simply wants to dress up as something they’re not; like every other trick or treater. After all, why dress up as something you are already every other day of the year? Some may feel highlighting a difference in one culture from another may not come off as flattering, but the fact is, another culture is different from your own or else it wouldn’t be considered a separate thing! And why is being different or “exotic” necessarily a negative thing in a society that wants to emphasize “diversity”? Why does wanting to feel like or be someone different than yourself for a bit a bad thing necessarily?

The perspective I want to being to the debate sounds corny, but I think is significant: Imagination. What child doesn’t want to imagine they are something different than what they are in real life? Reads a story about pirates and wants to imagine what it would be like abroad a pirate ship as part of the crew. Reads a fairy tale and wonders what life as a princess would be like. What it’s like to wear a gown to the ball, or reads about some far away land and wants to imagine being there too. To taste their cool foods, hear their music, wear what they do, if only for a daydream. Why is it not just as innocent for a child to dress up and pretend to be an Indian as it is a pirate? One can argue Indians were historically treated as inferior whereas pirates don’t have that history in the US. But how does that change the fact the kid simply wants to imagine being someone else, devoid of a desire to subjugate and denigrate those the child imitates momentarily?

As a child, I was very into different historical periods and various cultures. When I studied ancient Rome I wanted to know what it felt like to be a Roman and wear a toga, or a stola just to have that experience. When I was into the middle ages I dressed up as a medieval person for Halloween. When I liked the ancient near east, I dressed up as a Mesopotamian, when I liked bog bodies from ancient Europe I dressed as one too another year. Heck, I dressed as a dinosaur or caveman when I liked them as well! Notice a pattern? It had zero to do with race or singling out anyone beyond my own interest in that culture regardless of phenotype of geographic location. There was no distinction between the now un PC costume choices and the socially okay ones in motivations to choose them. I believe the same for most children who aren’t raised obsessed with political correctness.

I feel sad for a generation of kids who will never get that experience. One of being whatever they imagine themselves to be. Many adults can attest to the magical times they had pretending to be something they weren’t. However in a society that forbids one from being anything but what they were born as in terms of other people, they will never get to imagine what it’s like to be from a different place or imagine themselves as someone very different from themselves. I argue that we try to teach out kids inter-cultural empathy yet how can they truly empathize without putting themselves in the shoes of the other, and thinking what would it be like if I were them? It’s too abstract for young children to abstractly ponder the implications of the Indian Removal Act on Native Americans in a dry classroom lecture without an emotional experience of imagining being an Indian, and children can express that through pretend play. In elementary school our class pretended to be slaves being sold on slave ships then escaping slavery although none of us were black. Were we doing something wrong “appropriating” that pretend experience? After all, we could stop being slaves after the lesson was over. Or did it help us personally empathize with those who went through slavery?

Is it really some gross oppression that you have to be something I dressed up as past October 31st and I don’t? That’s the grounds for the ban on cultural costumes? What about contexts where one dresses up as a specific person in a different culture or race but it’s because YOU ADMIRE THEM AS A ROLE MODEL? Is that racist??? For example, what about a white child dressing up as MLK because he’s their personal hero? What about a kid dressing up innocuously as a fictional cartoon character of a different race or ethnicity? How far does it have to go? An Aztec or native print is now a sin, or a poncho? What about European stereotypes like an Italian with pasta or Lederhosen on non-Italians and non-Germans? Why can’t people imagine and pretend to experience positive things of a culture and have that motivate them to care on a more personal level for the real members? Is that impossible? Even more simply, why can’t someone choose a costume for Halloween without having to feel like they’re a bad person for wanting to use their imagination?

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This wouldn’t surprise me if it were real! I weep for the next generation….