This Thanksgiving Reminder: We Reap What We Sow

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The time may have come where we should face the reality of our history.

I’ve done lots of reading lately since I cannot stomach the news. I began revisiting my dog-eared copy of Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States, a classic bestseller infamously fought against allowing in the classroom because it’s researched and written from the bottom up. It’s POV and story is from the words of American’s women, factory workers, Native American’s, the working poor, immigrant laborers, etc.

In other words, it’s not our history as recalled by white men in suits.

And it’s a reminder that this country began ugly. What our original settlers did to Native Americans was atrocious. And it remains barbaric. When you build something on rot, lies and savagery, when everyone from Columbus to the Puritans committed genocide under the term of “progress,” you have to ask why we would expect those in power now to be any different? Even the Cubs winning the World Series can’t offset the angst of knowing enough US citizens justified electing a misogynistic, racist, tax-dodging sexist pig as president of our country. It actually makes me wonder how so much positive and humanitarian work actually gets accomplished. But having just “celebrated” Columbus Day and Thanksgiving upon us makes me think it’s time to end these myths.

Let’s start in grammar school classrooms. The truth should be taught, and maybe then our children will begin to understand how important it is to respect others’ resources and people who originate from another country. Maybe they will learn to find ways to live and work together sincerely.

Until then….you perpetuate a myth long enough and it should be no surprise that you elect a reality TV president. This isn’t the White Republican Man’s country in any other way than through coercion. The time has come to stop pretending it is. When you build something on a rotten foundation, you cannot make things right until you fix the foundation.

In 1877 an informal Arizona army surrounded and attacked a peaceful Apache camp, killing and mutilating 144 harmless Apaches, capturing 29 of their children and selling them into slavery in Mexico. Just because. That nugget from The Children of the Camp Grant Massacre is from delanceyplace.com, a site providing daily short excerpts of noteworthy non-fiction content relevant to what’s happening in the world today. We did that in 1877. How many kids know about this before we sit down to celebrate Thanksgiving together?

Isn’t it time to teach the truth? Like our lives depend on it? Come on. Let’s push for the right thing: teaching our children what we did right and what we did wrong. What do we have to lose? And how else do we learn?