By Rocio Monroy
Adapting to a new country is difficult both because you have to learn a new language and because the culture is totally different from where you used to live. Plus there’s the fact that holidays change on our calendars. Many times we like to continue celebrating Mexican fiestas from afar and being part of the country in which we reside at the same time.
But should we celebrate each of the holidays? Or should we educate ourselves deeply about the meaning of each celebration to know what it is that we are actually celebrating?
In the United States there is great controversy about the origins of the Thanksgiving celebration.
“Like Christopher Columbus Day (Columbus Day, in Mexico), Thanksgiving Day is considered by some as the” National Day of Mourning “, as a celebration of genocide and the conquest of Native Americans by the settlers. Thanksgiving Day has had a clear resonance among Native Americans, who view the holiday as an ornate story of “Pilgrims and Natives looking beyond their differences” to break bread. Professor Dan Brook of the University of California, Berkeley, condemns the “cultural and political amnesia” of Americans who celebrate Thanksgiving: ” We don’t have to feel guilty, but we do have to feel something .”
There are people who take this tradition as something that has been part of their life since childhood and, therefore, impossible not to celebrate. In Mexico, although not all of us celebrate this tradition, many of us learn about it through television shows and American movies, which show this tradition as a family dinner where they eat turkey and give thanks for the blessings they have had during year.
However, over the years, there are those who think that this tradition should not be celebrated at all, since respect is due to Native Americans and celebrating this day means celebrating the triumph of the colonists over the natives. after a long and bloody history of conflict between the two.
So, would you celebrate this day?
If you are one of those people to whom ni le va ni le viene Thanksgiving, then you don’t have to worry. But if you are one of the people who celebrate this tradition and you live with a certain internal conflict over what it could mean to celebrate Thanksgiving, then perhaps you could consider celebrating this day as a day where you simply give thanks for what you have. Some television shows that do not want to be involved in controversy have chosen to promote “Thanksgiving Day” where each member of the family says aloud what they are grateful for and eats a common and ordinary dinner. No controversy, no conflict.
As a Mexican, you have the opportunity to start from scratch when you arrive in a new country, you decide which traditions to celebrate and in what way. Remember that the United States Constitution protects the rights to freedom of religion and freedom of expression without government interference. So don’t feel pressured into celebrating Thanksgiving …
Although if you don’t want to miss out on a good turkey and celebrate with your friends and family. Of course, this year it may be difficult again to get together with our loved ones, due to the pandemic. If you’ve taken the necessary precautions and decide to get together, enjoy it with your seres queridos.
What do you think about celebrating Thanksgiving? Tell us in the comments below. AND…
“Happy Thanksgiving Day”