‘Redefine it for yourself’: Editorial claims Thanksgiving is ‘forced upon’ students

The editorial board at the University of Pittsburgh recently published an article titled ‘It’s OK to not like Thanksgiving.’

'It’s OK if this legacy of genocide rubs you the wrong way, and the celebration of this holiday feels wrong to you.'

On Monday, the Pitt News Editorial Board published the article “It’s OK to not like Thanksgiving,” recommending that readers ‘redefine’ what Thanksgiving means to them.

“Thanksgiving is a weird holiday as is,” the editorial claims. “We are celebrating the genocide of the Wampanoag tribe by eating with our families and saying what we’re thankful for.”

The piece continues:  

Breanna King, a sophomore at UPitt, does not support what happened to indigenous people back then, but celebrating the holiday does not have to revolve around that specific history.

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“I love Thanksgiving, however I do feel as though it is important to understand the context and root of the holiday. It is wrong to celebrate a holiday that celebrates how we have stolen land from indigenous people,” King told Campus Reform.

King, however, sees no problem with celebrating Thanksgiving on the basis of family and food.

“But, Thanksgiving can be about celebrating family and giving thanks.”

She also emphasized the importance of “loving one another,” stating that “redefining why the holiday is celebrated, with less emphasis on the early settlement in America and more emphasis on loving one another is fine.”

But the editorial argued that since not everyone is close to their families, Thanksgiving is not universally relatable. 

“Thanksgiving is also a holiday heavily focused on family. But not everyone likes their family, which can make the holiday hard to get through,” the article reads. “Whether it’s a difference in politics or an abusive environment, sometimes sitting through a long meal with family is not feasible for everyone.”

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A university spokesperson told Campus Reform that “the Pitt News is an independent student-run newspaper whose editorials represent the views of its student editors, not of the University.”

Campus Reform reached out to the Pitt News Editorial Board for comment, but did not receive a response.

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @logandubil