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The Student News Site of Segerstrom High School

Thanksgiving, an overshadowed holiday

Thanksgiving+is+annually+beloved+for+its+theme+of+family%2C+thankfulness+and+food.
Image Courtesy of Jed Owen via Unsplash
Thanksgiving is annually beloved for its theme of family, thankfulness and food.

Across the United States, millions of families celebrate Thanksgiving every year, whether that be through family gatherings, a lavish feast, or even a reflection on what they are grateful for. Yet the several holidays surrounding Thanksgiving oftentimes take the spotlight. As a result, Thanksgiving has lost its purpose.

Currently, Thanksgiving is between the most popular holidays, Halloween and Christmas. Even if Thanksgiving is popular with 79% of all Americans, there are more festivities toward Christmas (78%) and Halloween (73%). While Halloween, Thanksgiving, and/or Christmas aren’t celebrated by certain religions, the US is swept with an overwhelming seasonal sentiment. But this sentiment does not reflect Thanksgiving. Right after Halloween ends, most are ready to begin the Christmas season. Surprisingly, some believe that Thanksgiving focuses on consuming a lavish feast. There has never been a prominent season for Thanksgiving nor the proper knowledge of its history.

Thanksgiving first began with New England (Plymouth) Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Natives. It was in 1621 that the colonists shared their first harvest with the Natives in a gesture of gratefulness. That very harvest began the continuing theme of thankfulness. But it would be several decades years later that Thanksgiving would become a national tradition.

After the Battle of Saratoga in 1789, George Washington declared November 26th the day of thanksgiving. With the victory of Gettysburg, Abraham Lincoln would proclaim the last Thursday of November for “Thanksgiving and Praise.” These three historic events demonstrate the intricate history of our nation reflected in a single holiday. Even with such a monumental past, Thanksgiving is related to a darker history.

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Recently, there has been a growing amount of people who don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. This is because they have reflected on the horrific past with Native Americans. The history of the Native Americans contains numerous instances of genocide and brutality. Referring to the inhumane conflicts between colonists and the Natives, there has been an effort to educate on the perspective of Native Americans. In 1990, President George H. W. Bush commemorated November as Native American Heritage Month. November is now in honor of the sacrifice and the hardships Native Americans have faced throughout history. It is important to recognize the contributions they have provided us, along with the prominent morals Thanksgiving has.

November should be a time for even more gratefulness and togetherness. According to Harvard Medical School, it is more beneficial and healthier to utilize gratitude throughout November. Gratitude is a core value that we have lost over the years. On par with Thanksgiving, it is time for us to be more grateful, whether during November or any other month. But if we praise Thanksgiving for what it provides us, it’s a start to becoming the best version of ourselves.

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Joshua Vu, News Editor

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  • J

    Jonathan SandovalDec 21, 2023 at 9:07 am

    I like you explain that thanksgiving is overshadowed and how other people celebrate thanksgiving differently.

    Reply
  • M

    Max contrerasDec 21, 2023 at 9:05 am

    I like this article because of how true and agreeable it is

    Reply
  • K

    Kimberly CastroDec 21, 2023 at 8:48 am

    I do agree and also think that Thanksgiving is overshadowed. I learned that this holiday was the holiday that helps Americans to bond.

    Reply
  • A

    Aline B.Dec 21, 2023 at 8:46 am

    I found this article very helpful when learning something new everyday and how people celebrate thanksgiving differently around the world.

    Reply
  • N

    Natalie RamosDec 20, 2023 at 12:11 pm

    Thank you, Josh! This gave a nice perspective on the way people throughout the world see and celebrate Thanksgiving!

    Reply
  • N

    Nat sDec 20, 2023 at 11:53 am

    Nice article I learned something new reading the meaning behind thanksgiving .n

    Reply