by Gray Graham
Thanksgiving as a holiday is dead. Sure people will be eating turkey, dressing, green bean casseroles, and a lot of buttery rolls; but it is not a holiday any longer. Americans will only be eating until it is time to do something else and that something else is shopping.
See Thanksgiving has always had a bad rap. While for a lot of people it was a time to get together and give thanks for all that they had, for others it was a powerful reminder of what they did not have. Nothing brings to mind the hunger so many face in America like a day dedicated to eating a big feast. In recent times it has become traditional for various celebrities and the well-to-do to hand out turkeys to needed families. And there has never been a shortage of needed families.
Also we are in age of so many broken families that it really is hard to get together for the traditional Thanksgiving family diner. I mean where do you spend Thanksgiving? At your first child's father's mother’s house or your boyfriend's second child's step grandmother's house?
Of course this assumes that you don't have to work. As we have moved to a service oriented society the concept of an off day is now foreign. If you are not upper middle class then you are more than likely working on Thanksgiving unless you were one of the lucky to win the draw to get the day off.
I haven't even touched on the thing I always thought would do Thanksgiving in and that is the whole history of America and how they treated the indigenous people in the Americas. I say treated when I should have said slaughtered and destroyed. It was genocide on a level that has rarely been seen in our modern world. An entire group of people nearly wiped off the face of the Earth. We are in a time where we are finally trying to remove the r-word as a mascot for football teams.
But that is not what ultimately did in Thanksgiving. No that honor goes to the almighty dollar. As all the big retailers decided to open their doors on Thanksgiving to try and get a rush on competitors, they did away with many people thinking of Thanksgiving as a holiday and more as a bargain hunting day. This year retailers have been having Christmas sales since October. No time to think about turkey.
With Christmas being only 20 or so days later, American Thanksgiving never made much sense. I guess it was a part of that old American fairy tale about the Pilgrims and the Native Americans that so many people were told when they were young. As people have gotten older and wiser that fairy tale of Thanksgiving has lost its shine as history tells a different tale.
So our American day of thanks has been turned into a day of gluttony. People will overeat, over indulge, and over consume. When you think about it maybe Thanksgiving has become everything that America currently is and nothing can be more American than that.