I noticed a post from a Twitter account which said Thanksgiving to us was genocide and a hostile takeover of the Native Tribes in the United States. It just got me thinking more and more that maybe Thanksgiving in the context of what it means to the average American, is not a good thing.
Maybe being thankful for the many blessings we have is, but with a piece of humble pie, instead of apple. After all, we stole it. We occupy it with large diverse groups of people. Although we can't change the past, we sure as heck can try to make it better. Maybe we never will, but once again, we can try.
Maybe we should be mindful that the Native Americans once owned this land. They had to survive the elements, respect the land and give back to it, (the earth) what they took from it. They celebrated life from the cradle to the grave. Indigenous people in this country knew they had a responsibility to pass on the legacy of taking care of the earth to future generations, or perish.
Then we, the Europeans came along. We shamefully wrested the land from Native Americans. We set up our own government and broke every treaty we signed with them and imposed our values on them. They recognized at least 5 genders and we said heck no. There's only two. They worshiped the land, the sun, moon and stars. We said awe heck no. You gotta believe in Jesus Christ and you must be a Christian. If not we're going to kill every dang one of you. That's called genocide last time I checked.
You're also going to dress like we do and do what we tell you. We're going to impose martial law on your people until you succumb to our way of living, breathing, thinking, living and dying. You got that? Now to my military friends who love to argue with me about this, how would we like it if a country took over and there wasn't an effing thing we could do about it?
So when we move on from this Thanksgiving, let's be mindful of our own vulnerabilities in the coming year. Let's focus on trying to undo the wrong we have done to other marginalized communities. Let's honor the treaties our forefathers ignored with the Native American community. Let's be more compassionate with the least or most vulnerable among us. Let's be a nation of lifting others up not tearing them down.
That doesn't mean we allow travesties of justice to go unpunished or reckoned with. It means we hold people accountable. We can’t leave it to someone else to do the work, thinking that the job will get done. We all have to do our part to make this ship sail smoothly to distant lands and shores of progress.
For so long I said to myself (as a congruent female)
"Oh, someone else can stand up for trans youth in schools." "Someone else can fight for their (our) rights.”Besides, I have too much to lose if I'm transparent and come out."
I realized that there was too much to lose if I didn't. I could have lost my self-respect, my honor and my dignity as a human being.
I don't want God (my creator) to meet me at the pearly gates and show me images of trans children dying, crying and suffering and God saying,
"Síle, I gave you life so that others may live." "Behold the suffering I sent you to heal which wasn't healed because you were selfish, boastful and overly proud." "Your life was hard for a reason.' It was to forge your mind, body, spirit and will power to serve others not yourself."
I'm most grateful for forgiveness. To be given and received. Forgiveness doesn't necessarily mean forgetting. It hopefully means starting over on a good note. A good foot. Taking steps together to improve justice, integrity and mutual respect. That's something we can all be thankful for.