Thanksgiving: Behind the Marketing Campaign

Thanksgiving is a thoroughly fake holiday designed to spur mindless nationalism and religiosity.  It was first pronounced in 1863, without a single word about Pilgrims or Plymouth Colony, in a syrupy, overwrought religiously-phrased proclamation by the great non-churcher, Abraham Lincoln.

The also great sociologist James W. Loewen explains the problem:

Thanksgiving is full of embarrassing facts. The Pilgrims did not introduce the Native Americans to the tradition; Eastern Indians had observed autumnal harvest celebrations for centuries. Our modern celebrations date back only to 1863; not until the 1890s did the Pilgrims get included in the tradition; no one even called them “Pilgrims” until the 1870s. Plymouth Rock achieved iconographic status only in the nineteenth century, when some enterprising residents of the town moved it down to the water so its significance as the “holy soil” the Pilgrims first touched might seem more plausible.

Of course, ever since the triumph of the corporate marketing revolution in the early post-WWII years, Thanksgiving has also been transmogrified into what all other holidays are: a marketing platform, a superb ideological and sentimentalist schtick for pushing more (and increasingly trivial, moronic, and/or scandalous) corporate capitalist commodities into our personal lives.

So, let’s lift a glass to reality, shall we?  It ain’t quite what the marketers and nationalists would have us believe:


Settlement proceeded, not with God’s help but with the Indians’. The Pilgrims chose Plymouth because of its cleared fields, recently planted in corn, “and a brook of fresh water [that] flowed into the harbor,” in the words of TRIUMPH OF THE AMERICAN NATION. It was a lovely site for a town. Indeed, until the plague, it had been a town. Everywhere in the hemisphere, Europeans pitched camp right in the middle of native populations—Cuzco, Mexico City, Natchez, Chicago. Throughout New England, colonists appropriated Indian cornfields, which explains why so many town names—Marshfield, Springfield, Deerfield–end in “field”.

Inadvertent Indian assistance started on the Pilgrims’ second full day in Massachusetts. A colonist’s journal tells us:

We marched to the place we called Cornhill, where we had found the corn before. At another place we had seen before, we dug and found some more corn, two or three baskets full, and a bag of beans. ..In all we had about ten bushels, which will be enough for seed. It was with God’s help that we found this corn, for how else could we have done it, without meeting some Indians who might trouble us. …The next morning, we found a place like a grave. We decided to dig it up. We found first a mat, and under that a fine bow…We also found bowls , trays, dishes, and things like that. We took several of the prettiest things to carry away with us, and covered the body up again.

Dig the guilty knowledge even at the start, noted by Loewen: “A place ‘like a grave!'”


P.S. If you’re interested in what an talentless, dishonest, uninformed lout Rush Limbaugh is, read his pathetic attempt at an excuse for all this suppressed history.  “Nobody knows,” my ass, dickhead. This is massively documented by mountains of historical evidence.  Read a book, you über-idiot.

And check out how Limbaugh the neo-fascist doper scorns the truth as “just a multicultural curriculum which is designed to get as many little kids as possible to question the decency and the goodness of their own country.”

Horror of horrors! Questioning one’s own country?

Better to have the kiddies stick with what past generations have gotten: an intentionally falsified jingoist curriculum which is designed to prevent as many little kids as possible from questioning the decency and the goodness of their own country, a.k.a. citizenship responsibility #1.

After all, where would the Rush Limbaughs of the nation be without that implanted, continuing curriculum?

%d bloggers like this: