Wednesday Addams judges your holiday’s history.
Madeline Crabb, Rød America:
Thanksgiving — A time for gratefulness to God
Thanksgiving is a really fucking weird holiday. I mean, I’m not the first one to note this shit, but Thanksgiving has always been more than a little fucked up.
Like many holidays its a pagan feast day run through the xerox machine a couple of times and given vaguely Christian and/or capitalist overtones. It’s supposed to be a day of mindfulness and being thankful for what you have, but the retail orgy that is Black Friday is spilling more and more into it and everyone seems to be trying to do their best to not think too much about the holiday and its implications.
And then, we’ve got the official history, which, yeah, snarky title, but that is kind of how that whole thing ended up, with hundreds of years of genocide, broken promises, and just generally being a dick to the people who had actually been living here.
And that official history gets even more dark when you start to think about why this official history is even raised as “important”. I mean, at best, the much vaunted “first thanksgiving” was just a day (the whole “thanksgiving” thing was an already long established christianization of “harvest feast days” that were supposed to complement fasting periods) largely caused by a bunch of natives justifiably nervous about all the gunfire around their camps and wanting to check up on this “feast” the settlers were saying it was for.
At worst, it was a colony of religious assholes who believed they were entitled to anything good that ever happened to them, so fuck the people who actually kept them from dying. As they were saved from certain death caused by them being religious lunatics who knew nothing about preparing a new settlement for winter by sympathetic natives, they responded largely by many years of just utterly dicking around with the nearby settlements and blaming them for all ills when they weren’t busy blaming them on witches (which often translated to anyone who had favorable land and was speaking out about their being a dick to natives policies).
And then we get to the part where this holiday is used as the excuse to focus on Pilgrims as the “first Americans” and the “true Americans”, blessed by the very natives whose land they stole to represent what we think of as “America”. Despite the fact that they weren’t the first Anglican settlers and weren’t even that remarkable outside of the random importance given to this day.
A day whose modern interpretations are like most holidays products of 1950s suburban advertising. A day by Norman Rockwell painting are supposed to be about family and diversity but just end up meaning anyone who is in anyway non-normative is asked to sit down and shut up and lie about their life so that those who most fit the status quo can go on and on about their regressive bullshit without socially approved counter in the name of “family togetherness”.
But then, even though it’s this whole institution with so much stress and nasty history, it’s got good food and no one seems to care that much, so what use is it getting upset with the whole rigmarole?
As I said, it’s just a weird fucking holiday.
So let’s go to Renew America and let their pre-selected crew of time-traveling Klansmen make this even weirder.
Shorter (or the last port before Jungle):
- I just need to do a random Thanksgiving post sneering at people for not showing God’s giant sky penis some love? Easy, I can do that… OBAMA FASCISTS IN YOUR CLOSETS! DOG WHISTLES! Why aren’t we allowed to slaughter native americans anymore! I WANT MY AMERICA BACK!
You only had one job!
But more seriously, though this is pretty much the standard Renew America pearl clutch that has been copy pasted for the last 6 years with a few words here and there search-and-replaced with Christmas, it is nonetheless fascinating in just how it manages to fail at its one task.
In a couple of days we celebrate Thanksgiving, a day that’s become synonymous with lots of food, family, and football – not necessarily in that order.
ALL HAIL THE RUGBY WITH PADS!
It is a national holiday and therefore gives millions of Americans a paid day off from work.
You just know this concept fills her with unbridled fury.
WHAT! You have given the filthy masses a “day off” from their endless toils? And for pay?!? What is this world coming to? (/faint)
But are we taking any time out on this day to actually give thanks to our Creator, from whom all blessings flow?
We give you this thanks, Oh Lord Madden, may your pigskins fill us with our daily touchdowns and give us our… I dunno offsides or something. I don’t watch your strange alien sport.
But seriously, I love the little passive-aggressive snipe here as if every Renew America reader wasn’t at the very least doing the standard religious household food-magic ritual at the start of every meal (with extra in-your-face bullshit during special holiday meals, especially if Cousin Bill is bringing his “husband” and you want to communicate just how sinful you consider that).
Yeah, I think your usual pool of reprobates isn’t going to magically forget Jesus. Oh right, that guy I’ve been thanking for my meals instead of all the underpaid migrant farmers who actually bled to bring this under-priced gluttony to my table. Thanks random lady, that was a close one.
Which brings up a quick tangent. What is up with evangelicals spending all their time hanging out with a bunch of people who spend all their time talking at them as if they are some base wretches who need to be learned about the basics of the subculture they’ve been in their entire lives.
If I tried to hang out with a bunch of say, gamers, and every hangout consisted of them snidely and sarcastically explaining what a controller was, because clearly I was some casual whose just walked in off the street, you can bet your ass that my ass won’t have even hit the chair before I’m walking out that door again.
So why the fuck do evangelicals put up with it? Is there self-esteem just that fucked up?
America truly is a great country.
America is great! If we just say it enough times, black out any aspect of history that dares show it in imperfect light, and attack anyone who ever dares note that inglorious history, then it’ll be true and we won’t have to do any of the hard work of actually making it great!
My plans are great!
Perfect, no, because it is comprised of imperfect people.
Such as Steve. I mean, fuck, Steve, you had one job, achieve perfection as the living Buddha and you fucked it up for everyone. Now America is going to have to continue through the realm of Samsara and it’s all your fault. Ugh, I’m just so disgusted right now I can’t even look at you.
But we have something most other nations will never have –
Buzzwords and an impressive delusion about our uniqueness and importance in the world?
Yes! Nailed it in one!
We were founded on the principle that we are “endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Of course, most of us recognize these words from the Declaration of Independence. Sadly, far too many Americans have been taking these rights for granted,
Yes, indeed. Many have taken these goals for granted. Assuming that just because they were written in a non-binding letter that they were not things that would not need to be fought for and protected and treated as more than just buzzwords signifying nothing, but actually commitments to equality for all men, even the ones the letter-writer had chained up on his property.
And since you have the introspective ability of gnats, I’m betting this isn’t going to lead into a raw bout of self-realization, but rather just a standard “Obama is a tyrant because…er…HE’S BLACK IN MY WHITE HOUSE!”
perhaps thinking we would always have them. Consequently, we have become complacent, and run the risk of losing our freedom.
Oh, there are some naysayers who will claim this could never happen. But dear friends, it has been happening for over a century. Our own government has been sucking-away our freedoms bit by bit. The current Resident-in-chief has greatly escalated the process. But then, what can we expect? He said that was what he was going to do when he campaigned for the job.
Gosh, it’s like I’m a psychic or something!
What exactly did we think Obama meant when he proclaimed he was going to “fundamentally transform the United States of America?”
See, this is what I mean by fascinating. I mean, this bitter old waste of a lifespan is utterly terrified by this notion of change. That the world can move on. That things might need to change or that events can occur to transform life as we know it. In a lifespan spent living through mankind exploring space and the moon, surviving a stand-off with nuclear weaponry, an internet boom that has connected the world to each other, and all manner of scientific and medical discoveries, not to mention cultural advances for all manner of groups, she’s still jumping at every shadow and thinking everyone is just as terrified by the notion that the world can just… move on from her decrepit archaic ass.
This soundbite is a common focus of concern for psychotic right-wingers. Or rather was about 6 years ago, but here she is hoarding it like it was the last 20 years of newspapers crowding her entryway. It’d just be so sad if she wasn’t such a terrible person who could change anytime she wanted to.
Millions of us knew what he meant because we stay informed about important issues like freedom, tyranny, and our out-of-control government.
It meant turning it into a dog whistle because the very idea of a black man being president is so utterly terrifying to you, you literally can’t imagine a non-nefarious meaning to anything he says?
But hold on, it gets even better.
Because see, Ol’ Crabbapple here is really concerned you might have your hearing aid turned way down and might not be able to understand the dog whistles and decides to lower the subtlety a bit. Yeah… from here. Believe me, you’re in for a treat.
For those of you who believed all of Obama’s lies, why did you think America needed fundamental transformation? What has America done to you that would cause you to favor such change?
I mean, what do you even say to a string like this. It’s like the perfect shorter of the entire modern conservative movement. People who think the very notion of change, of the idea that the world doesn’t just stay static still in a perfect snapshot of a child’s understanding of their own childhood, is something that should be inherently terrifying and fought at all levels.
Furthermore that any change should be treated as a personal injury, exactly equatable to being violently attacked.
This is what people with no problems do for fun. Pretend that the world not staying a permanent snapshot for their entire lives is equivalent if not worse than what people who actually suffer oppression deal with on a daily basis.
And this is why I can’t be arsed to shed a tear when she finds this self-abuse genuinely distressing.
Aren’t you being allowed to chase your dreams, your happiness?
No, in this capitalist system dreams cost money. If I want to spend my days just writing or pursuing some risky artistic venue or try and build a decent volunteer portfolio for a PhD program, then I better have a shit-ton of disposable income to make it possible. Hell, just having enough to afford a pipe dream of therapy much less eventual surgery is a joke and a half.
And that’s before we even get into the fact that for the mental health of “happiness”, poverty is the ultimate lemon squeeze on the open wound. If you’re suffering PTSD from traumas or depression then poverty has a way of exacerbating the issues and making them take on an almost funereal weight.
Or the fact that many dreams are just straight up blocked for people of certain sexes, races, or orientations due to bigotry and discrimination. Many kids are quickly trained to abandon their dreams because no one like them is doing them or could see letting them pursue it.
So no, in our current country, most people aren’t allowed to pursue their dreams or happiness. But thanks for playing.
Aren’t you allowed the right to work in a job of your choosing?
BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA! Snrk! HA HA HA HA HA HA!
Oh man, that’s rich. Hee hee hee hee hee.
But to answer your question, no.
How about education? Aren’t your children able to attend schools, and even pursue higher education if so desired?
Again, no. You’ve eliminated most forms of scholarships and jacked up the price of public education so that only the children of privilege can afford educations that are now downright mandatory in our society. There’s a reason that most every college graduate is in obscene amounts of debt before they even begin a career, if they can even begin a career, because you decided to funnel all the money to a bunch of tight-walleted fucks instead of shit that would genuinely expand the economy and create new jobs.
How many of you have a roof over your head, food in the fridge, and a car to drive?
A depressingly small percentage considering how much wealth there is in this country. Also a depressingly small percentage when you consider that in this country, all of those things are straight up mandatory for survival except for a few national anomalies with half-decent public transportation like New York City.
If you don’t have some things, don’t you have the opportunity to get a better job, or a second or third job to obtain them? (Hey, I worked two or more jobs at a time to get through college.)
Oh did you? Oh you poor poor baby. Only being able to pay for all your college fees, rent, housing, food, and minor luxuries with your two jobs.
That’s so hard. Please, let me get you a comfy chair so you can regale me with stories of your hardships. Only make it quick because I’m currently up to 6 jobs and I still can’t make rent reliably with them. But I’m sure it was much harder in your days what with your robust financial support for those just starting out and your booming economy that was eager to hire fresh-faced kids looking to start a career.
And if you are experiencing difficult times, aren’t there generous charitable and religious organizations to which you can go to get temporary assistance?
Not really. I mean, let’s say I was Butch McManName, a properly cis white religious heterosexual who only masturbates to gay porn when it involves Jesus in an S&M scene with “evil jews”, who was a Church man in good standing who hadn’t managed to piss off one of the lifers with literally nothing better to do in their life than to oust others for not being “holy” enough. I might, might be able to get temporary assistance. If I grovel and let all the middle class assholes feel smugly superior than me for my “personal failures” that lead to such a “tragedy for my family”.
But it probably won’t last me that long and it’ll come with a giant list of strings and that’s before we acknowledge the reality that no damn religious charity would ever give money to a trans* atheist poly kinky slut like me. Ever.
We used to try it their way and allow charity to meet all economic needs. It failed. Badly. So now the mean nasty government needs to step in, because the charities failed to do their fucking job as advertised (but not as intended. It was always intended more as a means of letting privileged people feel a rush in controlling the life and death of other people rather than a means of giving aid to those who need it).
Yes, there are some homeless people in America,
Yes, there are all those people whose existence disproves my point, but let’s be honest, they don’t even let you through the doors of a modern Church unless you can hand-wave whole swaths of people easier than you can take a breath.
but there are multitudes of community organizations and programs to assist even these folks.
I mean, if they weren’t, then those who have gutted all aid programs in favor of giving all the money to rich people to hoard in the name of making their numbers compete against other rich people’s numbers, might have to feel bad about their actions. So yeah, I’m sure they’re fine (/step over a body killed by exposure lying on the sidewalk).
The fact is that even most poor people in America live better than the truly poor in some countries.
Besides we exploit the poor of third-world countries WAY worse than your decrepit asses, so I don’t even know why you’re whining.
Even some of Barack Obama’s Kenyan family lives in shanties.
DID YOU HEAR THE DOG WHISTLE GRANDMA OR DO WE NEED TO TURN IT UP SOME MORE?!?
We all know so-called poor people who have at least one car, sometimes own homes, have at least one TV – many times big screen versions, and just about every electronic device available.
See, that’s the thing about being utterly afraid of change and refusing to acknowledge that the world you live in now isn’t the fantasy of your childhood.
You still believe having a refrigerator, microwave, or TV is the status symbol it was back in the 1950s, rather than something that has less financial impact than the gas one uses driving to work and back.
Which, yeah, on that note… Cars are pretty much mandatory in America.
The sheer number of jobs that straight up require cars to even apply or not so subtly discriminate against any applicants who admit to using public transportation to get to work or are just located in a location that is impossible to access any other way than by personal vehicle are staggering.
Going into this job market without that ability is going in with a severe handicap and that’s saying something. My girlfriend actually is legally unable to drive due to disability and the number of decent jobs she couldn’t even send an application to because of that is enough to make one weep.
On that same note, cell phones and computers? Also necessities. Most jobs have online applications online and require a phone number to be contacted at, ideally one that is mobile and can be responded to at any time day or night. If you want people to have the ability to work themselves out of homelessness and poverty than these are non-negotiable items.
And as far as the TV. TVs are fucking cheap and are pretty much given away by the dozen by middle-class fucks “upgrading” their systems about 12 dozen times and donating the “old models”. I’m not the only one of my poor ass friends who has inherited a decent TV for the rock-bottom price of free from a richer family member donating the hand-me-downs. It’s not the 1950s, they aren’t the luxury items they once were. But thanks for playing this round of Poverty Denialism. Please enjoy our complimentary copy of the home game.
Many of them also eat just about anything they want.
I know, you intend this to be another siren on the general theme of “young bucks buying T-bone steaks”, but it just ends up sounding like “oh, there those poor fucks go, eating again. Who said they were allowed to eat food like they were entitled to it?”
Why? Because of government welfare.
Another thing that might as well not exist thanks to how much you’ve gutted it over the last 30 years.
Thanks for that by the way. All the heart-attacks over possibly going homeless and stretching a $7 food budget for a week has been totally worth you getting to feel like poor people are robbing you by trying to fucking survive your capitalistic hellscape.
Over the past 60 years or so, there has been a major move towards the Welfare State. Even FDR’s New Deal and Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society haven’t lessened poverty. By becoming “daddy” to those it deems needy, government has taken away incentives for people to work harder to pull themselves out of bad circumstances. However, charity isn’t the role of government. Founding Father James Madison said, “The government of the United States is a definite government, confined to specified objects. It is not like the state governments, whose powers are more general. Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government.”
America became great through self-reliance, hard work, and belief in God. Our demise is due to laziness, dependency on others, and abandonment of God. Like the Israelites in the Old Testament, Americans have forgotten who God is and all that He has done for us. Again, the Declaration of Independence says life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are from God. We have placed more faith in government than in God, which is very dangerous. God says He is a jealous God. (Deut. 5: 9)
Mammon is God! And thou shall not have any Gods before him! Worship his Golden Calfyness or face his wrath!
Furthermore, do we not understand the biblical principle of for those given much, much will be required? In the Parable of the Talents, Jesus tells us that God gives to each of us, according to our ability, and expects us to properly use what we have been given. It also shows that when we don’t use what He has given us, He will take it from us and give it to the one who has made the most use of his abilities.
See, this is one of the big reasons why the whole “Pilgrims are America” crap is so toxic. All the goddamn Calvinist scum running around truly believing all that garbage about those who have inherited wealth being inherently better than those who have not, because our path is “pre-destined” before we were ever born.
If we just never put these fucks on a pedestal in the first place, we could be free of this sick and twisted “morality” and all the inequality it perpetuates.
Jesus concluded the parable, “For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.” (Matt. 25:14-30) One would think that at the very least we are required to preserve what we have been given. But this parable shows that the one man who simply protected what he had been given had it taken away from him.
Yeah, I’m betting that’s the only parable on that chapter you bother to read seeing as how the other two in Matthew 25 are a story about working your ass off as a virgin to be violated by a lazy fucking polygamist or the famous goats and sheep story that basically spells out what being “profitable” spiritually looks like (you know after all that metaphorical buildup).
But hey, it’s not like I, as an atheist, who only ever read the damn book as a lark, understand it better than the people who claim to treat it as a sacred tome.
For America to remain a free nation, We the People must be grateful for what we have been given, and use this great gift in positive, constructive ways. Because we have been given so much as a nation, we have been given even more prosperity through our collective efforts. As a result, our generosity has been great to other less fortunate countries.
Oh yeah, that whole tenuous Thanksgiving connection. Completely forgot about that amidst all the fail.
And apparently saying you’re super generous precludes any having to actually be generous. Which is going to totally solve my Christmas worries. I’ll just tell people I always buy them fantastic gifts and then I’ll be off the hook for actually having to buy them anything.
Our Founding Fathers pledged their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor to establish America.
Not their sacred honor! That’s like the most sacrificey thing you can sacrifice to your country!
Many of them indeed gave both lives and fortunes for the cause. So today, where are the people willing to pledge their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor, all while relying on God for protection, to make America what Ronald Reagan called the “shining light on a hill?” Where is that level of dedication to a cause as great as perpetuating liberty? If we were planted here as citizens, then we are called to make America a better place, not destroy it – or allow our destruction.
Uh huh, so you’ll be signing on to radically transform America in order to stop our rapid destruction of the planet and the erosion of liberties in the name of fearfully protecting us against-
Oh, this was another one of those “I use buzzword, because I care generically about something… I mean, I want to make my racism and small-mindedness seem noble and brave because deep in my heart I realize I’m a tiny bitter little bigot who would rather see the whole world burn than allow those outside the “correct” demographic have an opportunity to achieve life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” things, wasn’t it?
This Thanksgiving, instead of just doing the same old food, family, and football, let’s give serious consideration about what God wants us to do with our lives. Are we using the abilities and “talents” He has given us? Do we acknowledge that God is the Giver of all our gifts, and that only He has the right to take them away? And then, are we using our abilities to grow a stronger America? Or are we allowing enemies of God and freedom to weaken America and curse God?
If our God-given freedoms are removed from us, it is because God allowed it – even commanded it, as He did in the Parable of the Talents. Dear friends, just as God allows us to make our own choices, He will also allow us to suffer the consequences. Thanksgiving is a great time to turn back to God and begin doing what He called us to do with the “talents” He gave each of us. To anyone willing to hear….
Goddy God God McGoddington the God. If I repeat God enough times, maybe you pathetic marks won’t notice that we’ve officially replaced any previous religious connotations for your God with straight up worshiping the right of rich bastards to fleece you like the sheep you are.
But seriously, may you have a half-decent Turkey Day (or at least a satisfyingly kinky post-family fuck session once the horrible family members are gone).
And may you be spared bitter old hags like this.
‘Shorter’ concept created by Daniel Davies and perfected by Elton Beard. I’m disowned by my family and will be spending the day with my partner’s mom and her super religious hubby. Let’s just say that I’ll be sequestering myself in a room to write smut as often as I am possibly able to. We are aware of all Internet traditions.™