Thanksgiving is some Native Americans' 'Day of Mourning'
This 18th century illustration of the first Thanksgiving didn't depict reality, many Native Americans say.
November 24th, 2011
11:30 AM ET

Thanksgiving is some Native Americans' 'Day of Mourning'

For many Americans, Thanksgiving means turkey with all the fixings, spending time with family, and being grateful for the blessings of the year. But for many Native Americans , the holiday is a bit more complicated.

The introduction of European settlers to the Americas had a mostly tragic outcome for many indigenous communities. They lost land to people who distrusted and disrespected their way of life. They lost millions of people to territorial conflict, starvation and diseases brought from Europe. Their cultures were misunderstood, devalued and deemed inferior. Some think the traditional Thanksgiving narrative – generous Pilgrims, helpful Indians – implies Native Americans should be grateful about the events that led to their suffering.

Mahtowin Munro is co-leader of United American Indians of New England, which organizes a National Day of Mourning each year on Thanksgiving. The event began in 1970, as a way to memorialize indigenous people who died as a result of colonization and to protest continued discrimination and exploitation.

The goal: Offer an unvarnished view of what the archetypal Thanksgiving celebration meant for those who lived in America when the Pilgrims landed.

“We do a National Day of Mourning to talk about this and just to say, ‘You need to stop teaching this to your children, and having this false mythology,’” Munro said. “The idea is that the Pilgrims had this bountiful harvest and decided to share it and they invited the Native Americans and everybody lived happily ever after. The Native Americans definitely didn’t live happily ever after.”

The mourning day events typically kick off with several hundred people, Native American and not, gathered on Plymouth’s Coles Hill, near a statue of Massasoit, the leader of the Wamponag tribe who lived in the area during the Pilgrims’ settlement. A spiritual ceremony with smudging of sacred smoke and prayer follows. Next comes a speak-out, in which Native Americans talk about past or present issues in their communities. Then there’s a march through old Plymouth and a social, where many of the attendees who have been fasting in memory of their ancestors break their fast with a meal that could include anything from turkey to moose stew to vegan fare.

“It’s really a day for non-Native people to listen,” said Munro, who is a member of the Lakota tribe. “Every other day of the year – in this society, we’re not even a presence. We’re relegated to being an asterisk or not even counted or being a joke, like a sports team mascot.”

Christopher Paul Moore, a Lenape tribal elder who lives in New York City, recognizes the history associated with Thanksgiving, but also uses it as an opportunity to gather with family and be thankful. His Thanksgiving menu is like many others –turkey and stuffing - but also corn pudding and perhaps some wild game.

Moore, a historian and curator at the  New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, said it’s a time for “keeping in mind not only the fruits of the earth but the water, the soil, the air we breathe.”

“It’s not just human beings and [being thankful that] we’ve got some food for our tummies, but it’s also for the tummies of the wild animal world; and the sun, the moon, the earth will all be part of that observance,” Moore said. “We will go to Manhattan Island and just have some time of thanks, to have some time with our ancestors. To be thankful not only for our ancestors, but for America, and thankful we’re still here.”

For J. Lucy Boyd  having a Native American point of view of Thanksgiving is fairly new. She didn't know her grandfather as she was growing up, and learned only six years ago that he was Cherokee. Soon after, she became an official member of the United Cherokee Ani-Yun-Wiya Nation. Boyd's Thanksgiving means sharing with others and enjoying the bounty of the season – something she finds completely compatible with her recently discovered Native American heritage.

“The Native Americans had an end-of-harvest celebration before the Pilgrims came. I don’t see any reason not to celebrate it today,” Boyd said. “I have more reverence for the plants, the animals, the things that sustain us.”

Boyd, a psychiatric nurse and author in Lakesite, Tennessee, will be sitting down to two Thanksgivings this year – one with her children and grandchildren, and another with her mother and grandmother – "one with the descendants, and one with the ancestors."  They'll be eating what many would call a standard holiday meal with ham and turkey. But next year, Boyd hopes to include some Cherokee recipes.

"Thanksgiving is for everybody," Boyd said. "It doesn’t belong to any one group, it belongs to all of us."

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Filed under: Community • Ethnicity • History • Race • Who we are
soundoff (244 Responses)
  1. Angelica

    Excuse you? taking jobs? They are just trying to survive. and before you make any comments, go learn some facts. for starters, look at the population of mexico city. These people try to find a job there first; which is impossible to do. If they werent so desperate then im sure its fair to say that very few people would choose to come to the united states and get low paying, miserable jobs.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Peikovianii

    What about the earlier migration of Aboriginals that were hunted to extermination by the invading Native Americans? How long can this genocide be kept quiet? How long must the Native American Gaming Commission profit while keeping us from this vital truth?

    November 27, 2011 at 2:36 am | Report abuse |
    • CPW

      Very interested in where you found this info.

      November 30, 2011 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. amanda

    Is US learning from it? Is that why they support Israel at all cost to control the middle east?

    November 26, 2011 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  4. Nitalynn

    Reminds me of the Saw, "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter." The truth is the Plymouth colony barely survived its first few years and would not have done so if not for the help of some of the Indian tribes around them and yes, these and many more tribes lost bitterly for their efforts but isn't this the history of mankind in general? Let's teach the truth in the history books and celebrate the fact that we are all here now to tell the story, good and bad and move on to a better future than the past. The one thing the decedents of both sides can definitely say is that their forefathers (and foremothers) were survivors. Hopefully that speaks of genes that will get us through a very uncertain future.

    November 25, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • amanda

      Better yet, let's mourn for those who didn't survive, especially the Indians.

      November 26, 2011 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
  5. Kathy

    I agree with your insightful comment completely. The Native Americans suffered greatly during the colonization of the United State and this continues to this day. It is unimaginable that we can somehow justify this, through our history books and by simply not discussing the issue in an honest and forthright way. We are quick to point out the injustices across the atlantic, and in foreign countries, but there remain so many injustices in our own country. This also holds true for the black slaves brought to America. This is a great article that should be read by all Americans.

    November 25, 2011 at 5:58 am | Report abuse |
  6. Really???

    It was Dutch merchants who used contaminated blankets to spread disease. They wrote letters about how they did it to Holland. America's Army did not exist because the Revolution had not occurred yet.

    November 25, 2011 at 3:54 am | Report abuse |
  7. eville_11

    Happy thanksgiving, Dallas won!!!!
    Or if you're mourning, because Dallas won...

    November 25, 2011 at 2:16 am | Report abuse |
    • eville_11

      A; thats true, 1 point on miami isn't much to give thanks for.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  8. EricKuma

    Yes, the first use of biological weapons on US Soil was committed by the US Army on Native Americans.
    Nice way to kick off the Trail of Tears.
    The Pilgrims were starving and Native Americans saved their lives.
    Yes its still taught the same way.

    November 25, 2011 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
  9. A

    Sorry, but the indians are no more credible than the pilgrims. Why do people care so much anyway? Am I supposed to feel bad/guilty/ashamed?

    November 25, 2011 at 2:08 am | Report abuse |
    • EricKuma

      Your still paying taxes to pay for the crimes. So get a clue.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:14 am | Report abuse |
      • eville_11

        paying taxes for crimes from alot of different things from which I have no visible gain or profit from, whats the point?

        November 25, 2011 at 2:32 am | Report abuse |
  10. anevay

    Im not one of the really ignorant to history people but I don't know how it all went down as I wasn't there for the first thanksgiving. I always believed that, the pilgrims were broke, low on food and water, looking for refuge, and the Indians spared them and shared their end of harvest feast with them. Then as the pilgrims got comfortable, and some hundred years later, the european invaders eventually took over. I don't think it was the first settlers that did all the bad stuff was it? Some native americans believe so...but I think everyone has a different account of what actually happened and when.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Texan

      You think that way because your "history" was created by white people with a vested interest in you believing in their version of "history".

      November 25, 2011 at 1:58 am | Report abuse |
      • stuffed full

        What is wrong with you? Anevay was just making a point that this is what we are taught. He/She wasn't making any politically aimed statement. He/She, like all of us, do not get to choose how we are taught about subjects in school. We are all innocent in that respect and need to look into all different view points of history ourselves to have a wider scope of the events. While it is generally true that history text books are compiled by "white people", you do not know their interests behind what they put in and leave out, therefore you don't know if they are actually lobbying for more minority views on events or not. In general, history text books are getting better and most teachers supplement the text with other readings and assignments. Happy turkey day or day of mourning to everyone.

        November 25, 2011 at 6:05 am | Report abuse |
      • Julian Alien

        You are correct Sir.One off my ancestors served in both sides of the War of Northern Aggression.He did not care wither side.He was trying to feed his large family and was a damned Indian."I almost took a mortgage,but i felt the recession before it came",a wise man.

        December 5, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jinkeun Pang

        I think that human histories was created by power and winners of past.

        March 1, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • flambeauxfire

        Mr or Mrs Stuffed Full. You are very cute but very nieve. Please take a look at that

        November 23, 2012 at 9:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • rinnan

      Yes I do believe it was the Native Americans that help the Pilgrims , by introducing them to Potatoes and Pumpkins and other swashes.Thus saving them from starvation.

      November 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • flambeauxfire

      I think it didnt take mor ethan 20 years before the original pilgrims and the indians they had bonded with were in a war that got real ugly. The Pilgrims got as ugly as the rest, but it is true that the oncoming waves of immigrants – by the moth – made the original co-habitation more and more complicated until that war erupted. Then, after that, it was more a case of which tribe you were in for certain tribes allied with the invaders to get better treatment for another 20 before they got the chop too. Pretty ugly stuff all in all

      November 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. cmc

    No one should sugar coat our history, but let's not forget that's what it is: history. As a woman, I could complain and whine about the centuries that EVERY culture in the world treated women like crap, but what good would it do? We're all aware of the past. We can sugar coat how in the "good ol' days women stood by their man" when in reality, they didn't have any other options and had to stay no matter how lousy the marriage. Civilized countries move on from their shameful pasts....we should be focusing our energy on helping countries that CONTINUE to mistreat people, not whining about what happened a couple centuries back.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Texan

      CMC, We learn what didn't work (at least for women or Native Americans) by looking at what was done in the past. It's called "learning from history". It isn't about "whining"; as you call it. Rather it is about understanding what actually happened. Real history. Actual facts. Therefore "sugar-coating" the truth does not serve either Native Americans (or women) well. Actually, it serves nobody well.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:07 am | Report abuse |
    • A

      If you want to argue facts, let's start with the one that says Texas has the highest highschool dropout rate in the country. You're a Texan so what the hell is your problem? see how guilt-by-association feels? doesn't feel fair does it?

      November 25, 2011 at 2:10 am | Report abuse |
      • stuffed full

        amen to that.

        November 25, 2011 at 5:54 am | Report abuse |
      • Joseph

        A, the high school drop out rate in Texas is high because the education system is more challenging. Texas doesn't adopt as many of these liberal BS, "everybody let's just tell the kids they're special and not fail anyone" programs. Texas really pushes its students to learn and excel. And when they don't, they don't pass. A fairly simple system of learning that has worked for decades.

        November 28, 2011 at 1:58 am | Report abuse |
  12. Southerner01

    This article seems weird to me,because I never learned that thanksgiving was about the colonists having a great harvest and inviting indians to celebrate. I always understood it as the colonists nearly starved to death and the indians shared their bounty with the colonists, including the thanksgiving feast. Did anyone not learn it that way?

    November 25, 2011 at 1:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Barada

      I learned it the same way as you our here in California back in the '50s. I, too, wonder what all these other people were taught.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Dougerino

      Yes, that's the version that I learned in Seattle in the 1960s. This article is the first I've ever heard of this notion of the Pilgrims giving food to the Indians.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
    • eville_11

      attest I didn't learn the version above mentioned either, but more the Indians helped the pilgrims. Other than that I won't comment on the lack of information the article gives or the effects of the Pilgrims on the eventual colonization and opression of native americans of the northern hemisphere by Spainards, French, and England. Just blame Americans born after 1776.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Amy

      I also learned that the Pilgrims were starving and the Natives shared and that was early 90's. Also this seems like 3 different articles mashed together. Just a mess.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:12 am | Report abuse |
    • CayugaBear

      I agree.. same thing here.. was taught that the Pilgrims were basically starving and the Native Americans helped them out in their rough time. And that was taught in school.
      From what I was told growing up that Native Americans have always given thanks in ceremony and prayer for practically everything way before Thanksgiving Day came around.
      Check out my cousins Illustrations for: "Giving thanks: a Native American good morning message"

      November 25, 2011 at 2:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Really???

      I grew up close to Philadelphia in the 60's. I was taught that the Pilgrim's had a difficult time adapting to life here. They were starving. The Native American tribe shared their food & taught Europeans what they needed to know to survive in a different environment.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Really???

      The article says Native Americans disagree with the woodcut shown with the article. In the woodcut a European woman is offering Native American men food, after it has been prepared by the other women shown cooking. Of course she is serving them, they are honored guests who brought a much appreciated gift.That gift is symbolized by the basket of maize kernels held by what appears to be the leader of the European group(his outfit identifies him) In the background a Native American woman is standing listening to another woman. The hospitality of that time period decreed that a good hostess keeps a guest amused while waiting to be served. Men of both cultures ate first, although children were an exception to that rule. We need to look at this picture with an understanding of the time in which it was made, not with modern prejudices. Before both sides jump all over me , let me say that I am viewing the wood cut fairly objectively; as an artist, a history buff, & a person with Native ancestry. This woodcut actually is what our interaction Should have continued to be, by honoring each other, & sadly what our relationship was not. Put aside your grief & differences, if you can, this day. I will continue to celebrate the spirit of Thanksgiving, Peace.

      November 25, 2011 at 3:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Ana

      Yes, I learned it that way also and it makes common sense since the Pilgrims actually were not sure where they were going and it took months to get to their final destination, out of food, water etc. Many Pilgrims died along the way. Native Americans taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn, seeds etc. and introduced them to the now traditional Turkey and saved their lives, while some NA eventually became ill and died of the diseases contracted from some of the Pilgrims.

      November 27, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • soccer

      i learned it the same way in the 90s and now i don't think of native americans when i think of thanksgiving. i think of what i'm thankful for – having a roof over my head, my family still alive and with me, and food in my belly at the end of each day

      December 4, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Truthbeetold

    I see a lot of white supremacy on this stream- and to all things regarding Natives. "Get over it? It wasn't today's generation that did this to the Natives?" Wow- it is pretty clear who is benefiting from the expulsion and resources of the land today- it is definitely not the Natives that still fortunately exist. Euro-Americans have a real hard time acknowledging the genocide perpetrated by their ancestors- yet we shun the Germans for the Jewish Holocaust. Hypocrites.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Texan

      Well said, Trutheetold.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Amy

      We shun the Germans? I didn't know that, guess I need to toss out the BMW.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
    • flambeauxfire

      Hear hear!

      November 23, 2012 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
  14. JoJo

    Didn't the NAs come over the land bridge from Asia and 'conquer' what became america? So, if we are going back a 300 years, long before you or I were twinkles in our daddies' eyes, why not go back a 3,000 yrs? It does the same amount of good. Looking back is a waste of time if you don't learn from the past and do something positive for YOURSELF in the future. Learn from other's mistakes and use that knowledge to better oneself- its what intelligent people have done for thousands of years!

    November 25, 2011 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
    • flambeauxfire

      Well there were no people when they came you see, so....no

      November 23, 2012 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Native Guy

    Is Banjo Boy your dad?

    November 25, 2011 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
  16. Missy

    I refuse to turn Thanksgiving into a Day of Mourning in my family. So many of us have suffered horribly at some point in our lives. But all of us – no matter what our histories or past injuries or grievances – have *something* to be grateful for. Let's just celebrate that fact and move on.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Well Said

      Very well said.

      November 25, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  17. A


    November 25, 2011 at 1:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Native Guy

      You must be inline at Walchart. LOL

      November 25, 2011 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
      • Native Guy

        You must be inline at Walmart. LOL

        November 25, 2011 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
    • A

      You must be inline at the casino

      November 25, 2011 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
      • Native Guy

        Nada, enjoying the winter at home.

        November 25, 2011 at 1:38 am | Report abuse |
      • A

        Good, me too. Happy Thanksgiving

        November 25, 2011 at 1:41 am | Report abuse |
  18. horsesmouth

    i hope you get scalped

    November 25, 2011 at 1:25 am | Report abuse |
    • hemo

      no we have guns. no need to worry. sticks and arrows didnt win before they wont win now

      November 25, 2011 at 1:39 am | Report abuse |
  19. horsesmouth

    Americans wonder why the world hates us? Look in the mirror. You condemn the NATIVE AMERICANS (FYI NATIVE b/c it's their land). So you condemn them, like they're looking for a handout, when YOU STOLE IT FROM THEM, RAPED THEIR WOMEN, STOLE THEIR CHILDREN AND THEIR LIVELIHOOD, AND THEN have the NERVE to say they should be grateful for what we LET THEM HAVE. THIS IS WHY THE WORLD DOESN"T LIKE YOU. YOU THINK you're the only one's that matter, look at numbers the majority of HUMANITY AND HUMAN KIND DOES NOT LIKE AMERICANS B/C OF HOW YOU ACT!

    November 25, 2011 at 1:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Arick

      You seem to think that land changing hands by force is a concept invented by America. You would be hard pressed to find land that has never been "stolen", with the exception of Antarctica.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      Sorry horsesmouth. America has more people trying to get here than any other country. We have more immigrants than anywhere and we always have and I am not just talking about Hispanics coming across the border but EVERYONE. Sure can't speak for the Europeans who came 400 years ago and dealt our Native Americans a bad hand. Some were wonderful and some were not but you are wrong when you say that nobody likes Americans as you are totally proven wrong by the millions who want to be here. Americans have given so much more money in contributions to any and every national disaster than any other country worldwide. We are a very generous people. I have to take issue with your statement that everyone hates us. If you live here, please leave, and if you don't live here please never try to do so.

      November 27, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Native Guy

    I wish I did. I don't get a check. I work like the rest of the people. It is a myth all Natives receive free money. Haven't you heard nothing is free? Some of Natives have paid with their lives, so you can have a social security number and social security checks when you retire.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:14 am | Report abuse |
  21. horsesmouth

    P H U C K you. A check from the government? What they should get is the option of taking your family and doing them in, just like we did to them. You act like they should be grateful for what they get. What tey get is nothing. This was originally their land. All we did was steal it from them, kill them, r a p e their women, take their children, throw them into schools WE THOUGHT we proper and strip them of their heritage. You should be grateful they don't s c a l p you

    November 25, 2011 at 1:14 am | Report abuse |
  22. Maxxron

    Only ignorant, uneducated "Americans" believe that it was the Pilgrims that shared their "bounty" with the Natives. We all know (or damn well should) that without the help and guidance of the Native people, the Pilgrims would have been wiped out by cold and famine. What did they receive in return? Theft, rape and murder of everything that they held dear.

    The Native American's are a beautiful and proud people that didn't deserve what happened to their ancestors. They should be praised and schools need to focus more on the atrocities that this country was founded on.

    It's true, there's nothing we can do to change the past, but we can damn well make sure our children and children's children understand that this holiday is more than just gorging on food. It's a day to remember the kindness and love that people can hold for each other, even in the face of adversity. To share and help those in need, to be a community of people and not just individuals.

    We are all humans, we are all equal. No more, no less.

    November 25, 2011 at 1:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Native Guy

      Right on! Happy Holidays and blessings to your family!

      November 25, 2011 at 1:18 am | Report abuse |
    • horsesmouth

      I think it's disgusting that your allowed to breathe my air. go get scalped

      November 25, 2011 at 1:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Maxxron

      And that's why you're an "American" and I'm an American.

      I don't look at this country through rose colored glasses. I completely understand the disgusting and cruel things our country did in it's infancy to anyone not among the Protestant way. Doesn't mean I don't believe we can progress for the better, learn from our mistakes and advance as a society.

      I understand history and strive to learn from it. Not ignore it with my head in the sand believing that this country can do no wrong.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:28 am | Report abuse |
    • amanda

      It is not just that part of history but other also are not taught correctly to the children. As they say, history is written by the winners.

      November 26, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  23. Apache (the webserver)

    people that are overly proud/protective/defensive of their heritage are annoying as hell. Your ancestors say nothing about you – only you define you, so quit trying to make excuses for your poor existence. Your ancestors would be ashamed!

    November 25, 2011 at 1:05 am | Report abuse |
    • horsesmouth

      you have no shame. that house you live in IS THEIRS. IT IS THEIR LAND before it was stolen from them and they were murdered, r a p e d, and worse. YOu should be s c a l p e d

      November 25, 2011 at 1:15 am | Report abuse |
    • horsesmouth

      FYI – they'd rather that. But you act as if you know what's best for them. GOD WILL JUDGE YOU ON YOUR DAY

      November 25, 2011 at 1:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Southerner01

      Horsesmouth, you cannot simultaneously attack Apache for taking the Anglo view on thanksgiving, then say that "god will judge you'" since the native Americans didn't believe that.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:55 am | Report abuse |
      • amanda

        But HorsesMouth does believe in Goi.

        November 26, 2011 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  24. Don

    Thanksgiving is giving thanks for what ever we have to offer thanks for.(family, friends, life, ....etc). Its for getting together and enjoying famly and friendships. Its not being thankful for invading and conquering a people. That should never happen...and we should never spend time always regretting for those things that happened ages beyond our own lives becuase every nation, people and creed would be forever mourning the past. Native American's invaded each other, many countries have taken land that belonged to other cultures and other people. Just study the history of man. I think we should be offering the Native American's the same opportunities we have...but I don't think we should degrade the intent of Thanksgiving...

    November 25, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  25. Pauline

    If you stare at a black hole, you will likely fall into the hole and be lost. This topic is an endless black hole, just like slavery.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  26. evelyn

    Yea Mike LOl

    November 25, 2011 at 12:42 am | Report abuse |
  27. JoltinJoe

    I clicked to CNN this evening to specifically see what they would publish in the spirit of "today's holiday is the source of all things bad", and that white men should be ashamed of themselves. And here it is. Sigh.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
    • The Dude

      Long ago history... Get over it and move on....HAPPY THANKSGIVING

      November 25, 2011 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
      • Native Guy

        We will never get over it! But, have a good holiday with your family and friends.

        November 25, 2011 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |
      • horsesmouth

        they shouldn't get over what you did to them. hang yourself

        November 25, 2011 at 1:27 am | Report abuse |
      • Southerner01

        So what specifically, did any person living in America today, do to oppress or harm any native American? My ancestors immigrated well after all of that was over, so I can honestly say that we had nothing to do with it. That said, even the descendants of those who did oppress native Americans are not the ones who did the oppressing. You imply guild by blood, but I don't buy that argument. The child of a murderer is not a murderer by blood.

        November 25, 2011 at 2:01 am | Report abuse |
  28. TiAmo

    Boo Hoo! I respond to this the same way I responded to the jerk who sent me a postcard with a picture of Christopher Columbus with the statement "Let's all go into a strangers house and tell them we live there now." My response was "Evolution is evolution – even the evolution of nations." Stop whining about something now of us living now had anythingto do about.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Truthbeetold

      I see a lot of white supremacy on this stream- and to all things regarding Natives. "Get over it? It wasn't today's generation that did this to the Natives?" Wow- it is pretty clear who is benefiting from the expulsion and resources of the land today- it is definitely not the Natives that still fortunately exist. Euro-Americans have a real hard time acknowledging the genocide perpetrated by their ancestors- yet we shun the Germans for the Jewish Holocaust. Hypocrites.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:38 am | Report abuse |
      • whatever

        How far back should we go? Should I hate the present day Itailians for coming into my native England and stealing my ancesters land? The strong take from the weak. It's a fact of humanity. It's still going on. If you are really concerned about atrocities imposed on one human being by another...do it in an arena that is relevant today. Go make the world a better place.
        Whining about history is useless. It doesn't help the people who need help today. We have to adapt or die. It's nature's way.
        Go find someone who has less than you do and give them a helping hand.
        I could whine about being an abused child but, I would rather go forward and do a better job than my parents did.
        You are not your ancesters and I am not a frightened child.

        November 27, 2011 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  29. Janie

    I have to agree. My fathers family came over from Scotland, tired of being oppressed by the English. My mothers family are Cherokee and Choctaw, my grandparents both were born and raised on reservations. I can't remember a single year they didn't celebrate Thanksgiving. As they said, yes it has a sad history, but for them it was a time to be greatful for all that they had, family friends loved ones, homes, jobs, cars, etc.

    I was raised thankfully to know how to respect both sides of my ancestery, the Scots didn't do anything to the Native Americans and quite frankly I'm sick and tired of being called names when Indians see me. If they could see my grandparents they wouldn't be calling me names. I have enough Indian blood in me to collect not 1 but 2 tribal checks and yet I don't. I work.

    It's time for them to get over it and quit hating white people who didn't have anything to do with it. Get their butts into college (most of them I know are content living on the rez) and show people what you are made of.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:32 am | Report abuse |
  30. Tommie T

    When the Pilgrims arrived there were not more than one or two million Indians north of the Rio Grande. And no more than a few hundred thousand (east of the Appalachians) who ever even came in contact with the Europeans. From the European perspective the land was largely uninhabited. And the Europeans were perfectly happy to stay on good terms with the Indians. And keep the Indian names.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:31 am | Report abuse |
    • evelyn

      Tommy T get educated we raped the Indians gave them small pox and stole all their lands and put them all on reservations
      Oh yes we sure were nice to them LOl

      November 25, 2011 at 12:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Native Guy

      Your numbers are way off. I'd stay at a minimum of over 100 million. The historians hide the numbers to hide the impact of genocide.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
      • Southerner01

        Utter BS. 100 million native americans living here with no modern farming and no cities? We only have 350 million now, with places like NYC, LA, ATL, etc. DO you have any idea how much space it would take for 100 million people living in hide tents? Not to mention the amount of food they would need. Pure fantasy. Your credibility is ruined by this statement.

        November 25, 2011 at 2:06 am | Report abuse |
      • Kim

        The numbers I found on line for the population prior to the settlements are as follows.
        25,000,000 people, or about seven times the number living in all of England, were residing in and around the great Valley of Mexico at the time of Columbus's arrival in the New World". here is the site where it can be found. http://archive.worldhistoria.com/native-american-population-through-the-ages_topic27325_post516643.html
        Te native people gain nothing from us. They help the settlers live through the winter and for their trouble, We raped their women, killed countless, killed the buffalo and stole their land. I fully understand why they would have a day of mourning. If any culture deserves it they do. this was truly the American Holocaust. And we should never forget in the same way Germany will not forget so it will never happen again.

        November 25, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Alex

    Sad how most of you know nothing about history. =( Typical ignorant Americans.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Under the bridge

      I know all sorts of things about history. I'm just not going to buy into white guilt self hatred.

      Natives are where they are today because they're all alcoholics, not because of mean evil white people.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:23 am | Report abuse |
      • Derrick, Atlanta

        what happened yesterday has an influence on today's reality. Its called historical context, it's one of the main reasons we study history, isn't it?

        November 25, 2011 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
    • rich

      please enlighten us alex with your wisdom and breadth of history knowledge

      November 25, 2011 at 12:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Pman474

      Alex, as I read some of the ignorant posts of others, I have to agree with you completely....

      November 25, 2011 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Justin

      typical ignorant americans eh? the arrogance and ignorant of your statement is on the level with some rebel flag flying white sheet wearing racists from the south, or even the neo-nazi's that still live in Germany denying the existance of WW2 and it's atrocities. If you are an american you are one of the ignorant ones or whichever country you belong to you are a blight on its reputation.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:59 am | Report abuse |
      • Justin

        ignorant tone*

        November 25, 2011 at 1:00 am | Report abuse |
  32. Bryant Malone

    Your exactly right. In my opinion stop splitting us into racial categories and forget and forgive. We are all Americans now and what happened so long ago shouldn't affect us. Just learn from the mistakes and move on. "A House divided, cannot stand."

    November 25, 2011 at 12:16 am | Report abuse |
  33. rich

    what a bunch of PC BS. yea we took over North America because thats what humans do. our entire history is riddled with groups migrating into different areas and then clashing with the indigenous people. does anyone really think its plausible that the pilgrims would have gotten to the new world seen the natives and then said 'oh wow, look at this beautiful indian civilization, better leave them be and go home'. of course not. or better yet, does anyone think that if the natives had the technology, they wouldnt have done the same thing in a heartbeat.

    one thing i noticed reading the meriwether lewis biography undaunted courage is that the natives were just as brutal to each other. they were always warring, enslaving each other, starving out other tribes, and generally being violent. know why? BECAUSE ITS HUMAN NATURE. were not perfect and never will be.

    thanksgiving is a celebration of the creation of the greatest country in history that has doen more good for the world than any other. thats something we should all be thankful for.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
    • wesley knudson

      well by ur logic.......i guess you dont have problems with mexicans overrrunning this country right.....after all....its HUMAN BEHAVIOR.....

      November 25, 2011 at 12:23 am | Report abuse |
      • rich

        youve invented a straw man wesley. i don't blame the mexicans for trying to better their lives, but that doesnt mean i dont think we should try and stop them. just as indians should not blame the europeans, but rather mourn that they were unable to stop us.

        November 25, 2011 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
    • horsesmouth

      it would also appear that you have no problem with someone coming to your house, taking it over, killing you, r a p i n g your wife, and putting your children into their own school. Hey, that's humanity, deal with it. Would you have the same position?

      November 25, 2011 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |

    The White settlers did not just "take the land." They fought long and bloody wars for the land. The Whites had superior weapons and tactics, which means they were better prepared to win the Indian wars. The Indians fought bravely and valiantly, but in the end, they simply lost the war. The spoils go to the victor, and the spoils was the land. I'm sorry their way of life was ruined, but, hey, it was WAR. Nobody really wins in a war,or course. But in this case, the victors were the European settlers.

    November 25, 2011 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
    • giants24

      Have you ever heard of small pox. Superior weapons had nothing to do with defeating the Indians. It was small pox.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:49 am | Report abuse |
      • AW

        I'd call that a "superior weapon"; germ warfare is a type of weaponry.

        November 25, 2011 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  35. Mantell

    Good, go...ignorant & arrogant ugly American!!!

    November 24, 2011 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
  36. just me

    day of Mourning .. isn't it called NAKBA Day these days? i guess it is. when someone is celebrating someone else is awaiting revenge, getting revenge or at least mourning.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Turtleguy

    Amazing how those wars just "happen" without anyone attacking anyone else to kick them out of their ancestral lands.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:44 pm | Report abuse |
  38. angryoldguy

    You are all idiots! Let me ask you this: IF someone where to try to move into your town & displace its inhabitants, burn their homes, etc. How would you feel? Try to answer that honestly (which it would seem that no one here is really capable of). HOW WOULD YOU FEEL? Would you welcome them with open arms? Or would you take up arms? "Eye for eye" Tooth for tooth"? That's what humans do, doesn't matter where or when, THAT'S WHAT WE ALL DO! Try looking into a history book once in a while and being honest about who & what you really are! WE ARE ALL KILLERS! Quit trying to justify the actions of your ancestors and wash your hands like Pilate. "Don't tell me they're peaceful!" Blah! Blah! Blah! Neither were your ancestors! The people of this world have been killing each other since we came down from the trees! We will probably keep at it until we are all dead! Nobody's hands are clean in this world, that is why we are told that we need "salvation". Sometimes I wonder if we are worth saving at all when I read bigoted, hateful responses like they ones I have read here.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • taffd

      it seems your posting was the most hateful of all

      November 25, 2011 at 12:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Native guy

      You are a true monkey a distant cousin to humans.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
    • giants24

      You are correct. This land was stolen from the Indians.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  39. BENSWA

    Where is my posting?

    November 24, 2011 at 11:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Southerner01

      ^^^^^^^^ right there!

      November 25, 2011 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
  40. Nothing is black and white

    and I really don't see why we all cant recognize and accept and celebrate Thanksgiving in all its complex facets. I can be thankful for what I have and pay my respects to those who died so I can have it at the same time. I can regret the methods used by white men and Indian alike and forgive and morn them both all on the same day.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:37 pm | Report abuse |
  41. blahblah

    well said pilgrim

    November 24, 2011 at 11:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Aunti

      The actual first Thanksgiving was proclaimed 56 years after the landing at Plymouth Rock, and so it had nothing to do with the Pilgrims. It was also in June. The first Thanksgiving was to celebrate a White military victory over the Indians, not to invite them all to sit around the same table over turkey and cranberry sauce.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Brian

    They're a news agency, they're not blaming anybody they're presenting an alternative view that some people have. It's no different when they inform us (you know, that is their job) of terrorist attacks overseas.
    God, apparently they only way to satisfy you people is to ignore every viewpoint if it doesn't agree with you.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:28 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Rachel N.

    I do not consider the way we treated Native Americans to be "crap." It is a sad and horrific series of events. And even if the collective "we" should not feel guilt, we should feel some responsibility for the greed and avarice that propelled the white man to take what was not his. It was somewhat Darwinian in that the "fittest" survived, but that does not make it morally right. We don't talk a great deal about morality in this country. Perhaps we should. If only we could learn from history and our mistakes.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
  44. naz lopez

    just because your ancestors were on the winning side does not mean that you should demonize the people that have suffered and have lost millions to the devastation that Europeans brought with them. The tables will turn around on your kind and soon you will be flushed out of this land when it is purified. Repent while you still can,

    November 24, 2011 at 11:25 pm | Report abuse |
  45. ARBB

    It is horrible that it happened but can I say that in the last 20 years, whatever the natives have suffered is their own fault. They need to stop blaming the rest of us for their problems.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Russell

      There is a lot of would've and could've. The bottom line is this, science has proven there are no real native americans. The people who we call that, are actually Asians that migrated over through Siberia to Alaska.

      Anyway, the Native American's of Asian decent where doomed. They numbered in the few millons, where still in the stone age. They where literally thousands of years behind in development, most had no concept of written law, nations, and were often at war with each other. This continent by and large was sparsly populated and in many places, empty. Few permanet settlements.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
      • Opened_Minded

        Russell so it was great that the white man used germ-warfare, war propaganda, and manipulated the Christian religion so that they could slaughter millions of NAs and force the rest off their land. You are absolutely right. They were Asian any way therefor they deserve to die. If the Chinese ever rose up into power and invaded America then they would have every right to do so. Why, well, we are mostly whites with a bunch of mutt races thrown in. Therefore, Americans deserve to be invaded. Besides if the Chinese defeat Americans then it will be our faults for losing. They would have proved that we are backwards. Russell, you are so right!!!

        November 25, 2011 at 2:09 am | Report abuse |
  46. UtahProf

    "No one feels guilty about this old crap anymore."

    Exactly, and that is what is wrong with this country ... don't worry, we (the white 99%) are next ... will you whine as you watch while the government destroys everything you worked for – decimates your way of life – force you to stand by helplessly and watch your children die? The American Indians had to do just that, and so will we ...

    November 24, 2011 at 11:19 pm | Report abuse |
  47. sk

    Hey genius. – What used to be a people that roamed this entire continent are now all dead and gone. Whining has nothing to do with it...

    November 24, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Report abuse |
  48. GC1CEO

    Recognizing that colonization and human existence period usually results in the destruction of one people or melting them into the culture with superior technology at least keeps us honest. However I don't see many people willing to return to stone age technology or refusing vaccines because of this either. Likewise most non-white conquerors are actually celebrated, when is the last time you saw a memorial day because of Atillia the Hun or Genghis Khan.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:14 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Fact

    Its not you fault . If a child is born to a crackhead mother . its called a crack baby . Now its not the childs fault . So lighten up and stop thinking its a personal attack

    November 24, 2011 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Fact

    The fact of the matter is that we killed off a whole race of people . Simple as that . And the few muts that are left . We give them casinos and no tax on cigz . woopdi dooda . They had a beautiful culture that we ruined to put in place a materialistic culture . Yes rome did take over people . But it did kill off the people of the land . No other civilization did that but us . This was the real holocaust

    November 24, 2011 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • BigRed

      I believe the term is ethnic cleansing.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • Fact

        I stand corrected

        November 24, 2011 at 11:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fact

      Oh why its so easy as to take advantage of others faults and not take the blame . What a noble thing to do

      November 24, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Report abuse |
      • Todd West

        Kinda like what the government does now? Take advantage of you yet never face up to their own faults? Some things never change, yet over time, people wise up, so perhaps there is hope.......

        November 25, 2011 at 12:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Yeager

      And I should feel bad about something I myself didn't do. Yea I think I will pass. I can control the actions of my ancestors about as much as I can control the weather. Sucks what happened, but I didn't do it.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Southerner01

      We? speak for yourself. Besides, you are off on your history.If European Americans were the first to commit "genocide" what happened to the mayans and toltecs? Additionally what makes you think that the romans, greeks and every other conquering nation did not either kill or enslave their victims? The enlightened city of Athens in Greece had 10 slaves for every citizen.

      November 25, 2011 at 2:18 am | Report abuse |
  51. BigRed

    Europeans came to this continent and formed villages while being attacked by native peoples, and perishing from the elements and from disease. Their personal bravery in the face of enormous odds is worthy of respect and admiration. When they had finally developed a minimal of self sustainment they gave thanks to their God and to their good fortune to have survived. Although some native peoples see this as their day of mourning, it was their own people who assisted the colonists in growing some crops. Later tribes allied themselves with the colonists in order to fight and massacre neighboring tribes who were their enemies. There is enough blame to go around regarding the plight of native peoples and some of it is their own poor judgement in trusting the colonists. But on this day of Thanksgiving we pause not to gloat over the demise of native peoples but to thank a divinity and our own efforts in giving ourselves a life where we are free.

    November 24, 2011 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Mark

    I love Native people – from lakota, cherokee, inuit, maori, fijians, caribs, andean, arawaks, australian aborignees, papau new guineans, andaman islander (india), masai, twa, bantu,khoisan, etc, etc. They are the example we all need to emulate if we wish to remain on this planet 1,000years from now.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pointless1

      Surely no different than our society today.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      An inability to adapt to changing situations, no internal leadership and lack of communication with fellow members, yeah sounds like congress.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Observer


      "no internal leadership"? Nonsense. Read about famous Indian chiefs.
      "lack of communication"? Nonsense. Cherokees, for instance, had their own written language.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • thinkingtime

      the christian culture is filled with ignorance and self deception. the natives were too wild for the tight reared christian philosophies that still cannot allow people to be alive without guilt and shame. these indians are really beautiful culturually and physically. they had greater respect and were more mature than the babies i see running our government. we cant even mention nature without calling each other names. sure natives were human like we are bur we could learn alot from the good things they brought to humanity. all the pictures reveal sick looking fearful christians dominating a society living without all the prudish expressions and clothing. we need to learn from these people teir wisdom is apparent to anyone senstive with perception.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
  53. NorCalMojo

    People really sit around and whine about this on Thanksgiving?

    November 24, 2011 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      Of course they do. Now that OWS has failed, they need to complain about something.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Waaah

    Didn't all this happen 200-300 years ago? Native Amercians should be more concerned about what alcohol has done and continues to do to their "culture". Time to start living in the present.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Soldierof

      Something that makes you go uhmm! Worry about the alcohol that europeans brought to natives, 200 300 years ago so it's forgotten (by those who brought the misery) Manifest Destiny destroy all that doesn't resemble your culture strip the land and it's people then we'll bring in another race of people to work the fields we take and then some oriental folks to wash our cloths and maybe help with our transportation system!

      November 24, 2011 at 11:13 pm | Report abuse |
      • sk

        Dont forget the wonderfully 'warm' blankets infected with smallpox given to entire tribes by generous settlers. Its one thing that this is all in the past and its yet another to relegate an entire culture to a joke.

        November 24, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • NorCalMojo

      I've never met an NA who was raised in the culture who whined like these people. Every NA I've met has been relatively stoic and barely ever complained. They were just like everyone else and rose to meet the challenges of the present day. They drew strength from their cultural roots.

      These are probably white suburbanites "rediscovering" their roots because they found out their great grandmother was a NA.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:38 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Pilgrim

    Who Cares! This PC crap is getting way too much. Nobody alive today had anything to do with the events of the past and it is time to quit the blame game. Native Americans were a conqured people, but unlike the vast majority of those that came before them they have been compensated quite nicely for the trouble they were put through, and, I might add, by those who had no involvement in these original events. As a taxpayer I think maybe this holiday should be a way for these groups to say thanks in some small way for the contribution that my tax dollars make to your lifestyle.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • sk

      yeah, get a whole continent for some wonderful compensation – some patches of land where idiots can go throw their money into slot machines.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • one2teach

      TO Pilgrim,
      FYI: I am Native American and I do pay taxes just like other Americans. I or should I say we do not receive any type of benefit from these taxes. Get your facts straight and do not assume you know anything. You clearly are self centered and can not think beyond your own world.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • TRH

      Read up on Manifest Destiny.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Brett in Eagan

    All of Human History is group after group of humans migrating into new areas and clashing with the peoples who lived there at that moment. Mongols, Gauls, Vandals, Visigoths, Chippewa, Iriquois, the list goes on and on. Native American groups did it just as much as Eurasian groups. The invasion of the New World was just one more phase in the constant expansion and migration of Human cultures.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  57. TCVAN

    What a stupid article.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  58. librababy

    I live in Canada, so that might have something to do with it, but I was always taught that the first American thanksgiving was when the pilgrims were there and they were starving so the Native people showed them how to grow food and shared what they had with them. I didn't hear this other version where the pilgrims shared food with the Native people. Why wouldn't the people who had already been living there for quite some time already know how to grow food? I'm pretty sure they would have.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      History, being re-written again.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      Your historical narrative, taught north of the border, matches what I recall from my US school experience.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Donna

      I live in the US and I was taught the same thing as you, but I am 50 years old, so maybe they rewrote it again. Wouldn't surprise me if they did.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:59 pm | Report abuse |
  59. P

    Am I supposed to feel guilty or what?

    November 24, 2011 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      No. You're supposed to acknowledge the truth and look past the lies.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • P

      well, I'm not sure who's ignoring the truth because I think most people acknowledge that we killed lots of NA for their land. That's in most history books.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • AK

      And get maudlin over every vente' of whining to which you are subjected.


      November 24, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      No, you're supposed to give them something they didn't earn by making you feel guilty about being born white.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  60. AGuest9

    I would think that Columbus Day would be the day to pick on.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • jmc

      This would indeed be the more appropriate day to recognize the devastation of native peoples. It was livestock-borne disease that arrived in the Americas in the immediate aftermath of Columbus's voyages that wiped out as much as 90% of the existing native population - before the arrival of colonists in New England. The remnants of deserted villages could still be seen there at the time, to the shock of returning natives.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:24 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Observer

    These are important points that should be remembered by the hypocrites who brag about our "Christian" nation.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      The "Belief Blog" is elsewhere.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Observer

      "The "Belief Blog" is elsewhere."

      The FACTS are here.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Adam

    From the day the first human left the african continent and began to spread throughout the world there have been wars and injustices. It is just a part of our animal heritage. There once was a group called neandertals, they dissapeared entirely. From invading groups like the Persian, Mongols and Romans the modern human race has grown and prospered We can not return to the past and force the Romans to repay the europeans for what they took from them nor return the latter day africans slaves from south america back to the west african coast from which they came. The cherokees decended on the creeks and dispalced them just as the souix displaced other groups. No one can fix the past. Clinging to it ony keeps one from moving forward. Of course the news media has to fill in dead air with people's endless complaints about their lives. Its entertainment. People who are sucsessful in this world move forward eveyday and make the most of this brief existance. After all, we will all become the same dirt we arose from in short order,

    November 24, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tamara

      Exceptionally well said.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:27 am | Report abuse |
  63. Pilgrim

    Who Cares! This PC crap is getting way too much. Nobody alive today had anything to do with the events of the past and it is time to quit the blame game. Native Americans were a conqured people, but unlike the vast majority of those that came before them they have been compensated quite nicely for the trouble they were put through, and, I might add, by those who had no involvement in these original events. As a taxpayer I think maybe this holiday should be a way for these groups to say thanks in some small way for the contribution that my tax dollars make to your lifestyles.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pilgrim

      I had ancestors on the frontier that were slaughtered by the Sioux, and I don't get any compensation for that, nor do I expect to. But you must be one of those who like to believe that Native Americans were all about peace and love prior to Europeans coming to this land. I suppose it is easeir to believe that than to accept the proven fact that they were largely composed of violent groups that were constantly in conflict with each other and often totally destroyed their enemies right down to their women and children. I guess a PC mindset has to ignore the truth to make their views seem more reasonable. In truth, nobody around today can claim that their ancestors were innocent, we all have our roots soaked in blood. Unlike some, however, I can accept that. I make no apologies, nor do I ask any.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
      • MLM

        I too had ancestors who were killed by Shawnee in the night, women and children were slaughtered with babies killed and left outside, do not tell me the were peaceful. I am so tired of people trying to make people of European descent feel bad for being on the winning side. The frontier in KY was attacked regularly and it wasn't inhabitated at the time by Native Americans. Their local history said it was haunted by souls of massacre of tribes that once lived there.There are many instances of Indian attacks on settlements and killing all who were there.

        November 24, 2011 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
      • one2teach

        To MLM:
        Check your facts, "winning side". What did that side really win? We are still here, free as we were when that guy got lost and landed on the eastern shores.

        November 24, 2011 at 11:33 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Three Dog Mama

    We were not a very nice people when we came to America. Either at Plymouth or Jamestown or Manhattan. Matter of fact, we were horrible to the people who lived here. This was a myth started by the White People for their own reasons. And as time has gone on, people forget about those who were here before us – and are still here. We have raped their country from sea to shining sea. Yes, the victors get to write history but there is always another side to the story. I for one cherish the little history that I can read on the NATIVE Americans and how horrible we were to them and still are.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chief

      Ha. Ha. Ha. Two things. One, yes, white people conquered the Indians. It's no different from when Alexander the Great conquered the known world, or when the Romans conquered much of Europe, or when the French conquered England. The world keeps moving forward, no matter what, it's pointless to go back and say how horrible settlers were to the Indians, because guess what? If the settlers had been nicey-nicey with them and not put their culture in place, you most likely would not be alive, would not have a computer, and would not have the life you have as a whole. The second thing is, you claim there are always two sides to the story, but what if I tried to make that argument about the Civil War? You would most likely tell me that there is no other side to that story, that Southerners were monsters, etc, etc, simply because that is not a popular "little guy" to support.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
      • longshot

        Yes, violence has been our human history, but we can acknowledge it (not pretend it didn't happen) and try to learn from it, not simply accept it or cover it up with pretty stories. At that time, that was the way the world worked. It really hasn't changed much.

        November 24, 2011 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      "We"? Were you on the Mayflower?

      November 24, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Observer

      "If the settlers had been nicey-nicey with them and not put their culture in place, you most likely would not be alive, would not have a computer, and would not have the life you have as a whole."

      If we "didn't have the life you have as a whole", we obviously wouldn't know the difference. Pointless. The same argument could be made that we should be living 100 years from now instead.

      November 24, 2011 at 11:13 pm | Report abuse |
  65. timothy stallings

    Are you sure you aren't talking about Clayton county Georgia?

    November 24, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Rodeo_Joe

    Why did the U.S. Govt have to re-legislate Freedom of Religion for Native Americans as recently as the 1990's? Why?

    It ain't a pretty story, even if many intend to forget it. Their "stone age" comments merely reflect their meager U.S. education

    November 24, 2011 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Bob

    This is so pathetic. Does anyone remember how the Native Americans murdered and stole land from each other? Do you think that for one second, if a Native American tribe had the technology of the colonizers, they wouldn't wipe out everyone else in their way? The Native Americans were primitive brutes, to foreigners, and to other tribes.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joeymom

      No more so than the Europeans who came to encroach on their territory.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:17 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bob

        True, but it just goes to show that this whole politically correct Native American worship is BS.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
  68. VonDoom

    Wow, reading this blog is amazing. I love how when normal everyday Americans can speak with anonymity only show their true colors of how racist, ignorant and bigoted they really are. And then they can't figure out why the rest of the world dislikes us so much.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      And just when we can't seem any more ignorant...Dubya comes on the tube and announces they hate us for our freedoms. We are a country full of brainwashed fools, with good people here and there.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • jack

      “A great country worthy of the name does not have any friends.” ~ Charles de Gaulle

      November 24, 2011 at 10:31 pm | Report abuse |
      • Mike

        heres one now

        November 24, 2011 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse |
  69. P

    I can't help but wonder if these same people lamenting the colonization of America drive cars or use electricity?

    November 24, 2011 at 10:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      We had to kill Indians to drive cars and use electricity?

      November 24, 2011 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • P

      no but let's face it – the mentality back then was kill or be killed. Look at all the tribe wars.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:43 pm | Report abuse |
      • Opened_Minded

        The mentality back then was we have arrived from Prussia, France or where ever to rap, pillage, and kill Native Americans so the NAs can be force off the land. It was pure greed supported by racist justifications.

        November 25, 2011 at 4:04 am | Report abuse |
  70. Mattmchugh

    History, after all, is written by the victors.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      not all of it. gotta dig.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Raven

    Sadly, the American society, Media and Government, continue to ignore the travesties committed against the American Indian/Alaska Natives. People talk about the horrors committed by other countries against their people yet these same horrors committed in this country are ignored. Doesn't anyone know – or at least wonder – what drove tribes who were traditionally enemies to join together to attack Custer? Why does society ignore the fact that in the 1800's, our troops surrounded and murdered 300 men, women, children for doing a dance that the government ruled illegal? Why did whites allow mission schools to forcibly remove indian children from their villages to be placed in these schools – have their hair cut, forced to accept English names, forced to give up their customs, beaten (the saying was "kill the indian/save the man"). This continued until the 1960's. I see society go balistic about conditions in other countries yet remain silent about our own dirty not-so-well-kept secret.
    Reading most of these postings show not only the ignorance but the desire to ignore the issues – that are continuing – rather than to take a stand. To those who are interested in learning the truth – take classes at colleges.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • waycist

      never bring a tomahawk to a gun fight

      November 24, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Todd West

      Raven, you are absolutely correct. The postings of most people here show they are like the majority, hateful and clearly not understanding that when war comes to our land again, they could very well be the losers.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:42 am | Report abuse |
  72. JMChicago

    I sympathize with the Native Americans, but as a professor of history, realize that its history... and what happened to the Native American's isn't much different than has happened in most countries in cultures since the beginning of time. The Ottoman empire, the Persian empire, the Roman empire, the Gauls, the Moors, etc... have all taken over entire countries/continents, enslaved, raped and murdered (millions) and stolen lands, and the political boundaries of the countries changed. And than a few hundred years later, it would happen all over again. Even the Spanish were taken over by the Moors for hundreds of years until they were able to rise up and finally defeat the Moors. The native american's tried to do the same, but failed. Eventually they integrated, same as most other cultures historically speaking. Its nothing new or unique to Native American's. In fact, the Native American's would enslave, murder, and rape neighboring tribes to steal their lands... some such as the Mayans and Incas stealing hundreds of thousands of square miles of land and killing hundreds of thousands of people. What the Spanish did in the Americas wasn't any different than what native american's were literally already doing to each other for thousands of years.

    November 24, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      you claim to be a professor! Um – take your head out of the sand and open your eyes. The "games" continue today. So this is about history – this is about today's time – ths is about the future unless people wake up and insist the Government do right by the Natives. The Canadians have started – when will the US start?

      November 24, 2011 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse |
      • JMChicago

        Like I said, its all history. Native American's were awarded reservations and gaming rights. My family comes from a country that was taken over by the Roman empire, the Ottomans, and later the Germans and finally the Soviets. All of our land was taken and ancestors were killed, but its just history and I don't expect anything in return, just like the Native Americans shouldn't.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • Todd West

        Raven, the US will not, the government will not even admit it has driven all Americans, our country, our economies, our lives, into the ground. Nope, what you WILL hear is how great they/you are, and how free you are. Much less for some ethnic cleansing that took place hundreds of years ago.

        November 25, 2011 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
    • amadeo122

      than if it's all nice and dandy why are we still persecuting nazis? it happened a long time ago? why don't we forget about the Holocaust? there's been massacres of millions throughout history even after the holocaust. Why can't the Germans lift a monument to their world war 2 dead? we remember Custer, the 7 th cavalry, and many other mass murderers as heroes, I don't see why can the nazi sympathizers in Germany not lift a monument to Hitler neither. If we enjoy thanksgiving based on how the white settlers took advantage of the native population I don't why the Germans should not celebrate the invasion of France during WW2.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
      • Brian

        Find me a European or American colonists that massacered an Indian tribe a hundred and fifty years ago and we'll prosecute them the same as finding a living person that actually helped to kill off the Jews.
        And news flash, the Germans don't want to celebrate that history. Americans do.

        November 24, 2011 at 11:23 pm | Report abuse |
      • Tamara

        Amadeo, The lack of basic logic and common sense in your writing is truly extraordinary to behold. Congratulations. You've just cemented the general view of Nazi sympathizers (and present-day Nazis) as ignorant, hate-filled losers even further. You rock. Really. Keep it up.

        November 25, 2011 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      JM, if there were Neanderthals alive today, they would be demanding reparations from H. Sapiens.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
      • That's right

        @AGuest9, yourself along with many posters here must be the last remaining Neanderthalls. Ignorant, mouth breathing relic of the past...

        November 24, 2011 at 11:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • Todd West

        The US and State governments are mostly made up of neanderthals, or have you not noticed?

        November 25, 2011 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
    • AK

      Prof, you are spot-on despite the race-card ravings cess-pitting this blog. What tribes did to each other (sometimes in alliance with whites) definitely rivals what Europeans did to them.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tamara

      You're killing me, "professor". Stop abusing the poor apostrophe, please; it did nothing to you. "Native Americans" - NOT "native american's". You claim to be a professor and don't have basic writing skills? Yikes.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Native Guy

      You sound educated, but miss the point. As long as we have Thanksgiving with the myth of this country starting out pure with Native imagery in it showing a true friendship; the truth of genocide will continue to slap one in the face. See the truth and don't deny the true nature of the beginnings of this country.

      November 25, 2011 at 1:28 am | Report abuse |
  73. timothy stallings

    True , but be nice!!LOL

    November 24, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Report abuse |
  74. timothy stallings

    I believe that human history is a lesson to be learned and not forgotten, all of it! The problem is NOBODY seems to learn from it. The Native Americans want something from us, I am not sure what, but I don't want to go backwards in time and have to hunt for food. Today it is a grocery store away. Everyone, today, must come to the realization times and things change. NO one group is perfect, even if they think they are, that's their problem. I leave the perfecting of the human spirit to God not man. As a black man I see the results of the past mistakes made by American politics and people. I refuse to live in the past, my family has invested a lot into America and I'm going to give it to my grandchildren. Enjoy the fruits of this society!!

    November 24, 2011 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      What we want is for the Government to do the following: Honor the treaties; make a formal apology for the murders and crimes committed against us; to provide help in saving our cultures that they have tried to wipe out; for the citizens in this country to acknowledge the crimes committed against us. There is more but what I have listed is a good start.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
  75. itoldyouso10

    One culture's celebration can be another culture's suffering, even if it is masked...how about we just celebrate the achievements and goodness of all us just being human, and remember that any division between us is only in the mind at the end?

    November 24, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Native American

    Native Americans are a conquered people. It happened way before I was born, and my ancestors won. Many civilizations have been wiped out by invaders that beat them. It's the history of the human race, and I feel no worse about it than I do that Britain lost the Revolutionary War, the Confederacy lost the Civil War, or that Communism/Socialism lost the Cold War. History has passed by the American Indian, and they were on the losing side.

    November 24, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  77. P

    Oh I can't believe you people. You seriously want me to sympathize with Native Americans because their great great great great grandfather couldn't protect his land?

    November 24, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Travis

    I'm thankful for my family, right to religion, place in society and the ability to speak freely what is on my mind. For that can't we have 1 holiday that is not dissected and put in to "PC" terminology over events that happend centuries ago? There's not a single "Native American" in which can recollect any events that happened in that time period. While your at it CNN lets go ahead and start listing all the genocides and wars that have taken place over the last 400 years. I'm sure there are families in the United States who are still mourning the Civil War losses and hold contemp and ill will towards the North or South. C'mon as callous as it may sound it happened centuries ago, the "Native Americans" of today are not personally affected...time to deal with history and move on.

    November 24, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • thinkingtime

      are you kidding me.. the right to religion? samans that use plants and mushroom are illegal... reigions that interact with nature are illegal and people laugh it off. the truth is that plant based spirituality will land you in jail simply because this type of inquiry is frightening to a christian culture. natives barely have the right to peyote. thwe have freedom of religion as defined by a christian culture.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Todd West

      you only have any kind of rights, if the law deems them legal. Right to religion? Nada, if it involves anything illegal. Right to speak freely? Do it and speak against your masters, they will brand you as a potential terrorist or undesirable, and you will be monitored in ways you've never dreamed of, 24/7. You'd better wake up.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  79. RK Murphy

    If someone came to America begged for help from your people and afterwards stabbed you in the back, when would you stop crying about it?

    November 24, 2011 at 9:52 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Lisa

    learn their history and what the was truly done to them and then you'll realize why they are so upset. you're pathetic.

    November 24, 2011 at 9:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Todd West

      git 'em Lisa!

      November 25, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  81. Raven

    Not true.

    November 24, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
  82. P

    fine 250

    November 24, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Paul

    90% of indigenous peoples died prior to Plymouth from small pox that spread from the Spanish in South America.

    November 24, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • brandon

      in case you didn't know this... SPAIN IS IN EUROPE

      November 24, 2011 at 9:44 pm | Report abuse |
      • geoz

        Silly... the oldest city in North America is St. Augustine. A Spanish fort and city. Spain colonized North America. That's why Florida is a Spanish word... and many other cities and states.

        November 24, 2011 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bob

        Nice try, idiot. Guess we know who didn't pay attention in history class.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • timothy stallings

      Not completely true, a British officer gave the Indians blankets, he knew had smallpox in them. This took place in the now New York area. His reason was to reduce the population so they could expand and not return to Europe. Biological warfare at its finest !!

      November 24, 2011 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
      • AGuest9

        Also at Fort Pitt during the "French & Indian" wars.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jinkeun Pang

      I did not heard about that.

      March 1, 2012 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Paul R.

    The modern holiday we celebrate is a moment of shared thanks for family, friends and any blessings we've encountered. It's not a moment to celebrate the Pilgrim "invasion," nor is it an opportunity to berate ourselves (or get angry) with shame and regret about events that occurred 400 years ago. Can there be just ONE frigging holiday where some group doesn't try to make another group feel lower than dung?

    November 24, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      Well – perhaps that will occur when this country steps up and acknowledges the crimes committed against Natives and the Government finally honors the treaties.

      November 24, 2011 at 9:44 pm | Report abuse |
      • AGuest9

        Well, if the Delawares want the Poconos back, they can have them. First, you'll have to kick out the commuters and drug dealers from NYC. Oh, wait, it didn't belong to the Delawares – the Iroquois and the Mohawk "made women of them" and moved them there to protect the southern area of the Confederacy from the Lenape and the Susquehannock.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • geoz

      Nor were the various tribes invited to this territory. They invaded a natural area that could have been left alone. No one is all victim nor all invader. The Pilgrims were oppressed in their home country as well. So... who deserves what now? I don't think Pilgrim = bad. Nor native = good. It is more complicated than that.

      But... we all have families. Se can be thankful for what we have today. I am.

      November 24, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  85. PorkNBeans

    It's good to see CNN adding this fact usually saved for non-main stream venues.

    November 24, 2011 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  86. John S.

    America is again reminded of our partial genocide of the aboriginals. A timeless lesson continues to be re-taught with each new reminder of this past shortcomings.

    November 24, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      Only America? What about South Africa and Australia?

      November 24, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Realist

      What rubbish.

      November 25, 2011 at 12:14 am | Report abuse |
  87. Peikovianii

    The day the wheel wasn't invented in the Western Hemisphere should be the Native American day of morning.

    November 24, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      Um – they were doing just fine until the Europeans arrived!

      November 24, 2011 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
      • geoz

        Not necessarily. And not everyone.

        November 24, 2011 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Ken J

    Thank you for this thought provoking piece, I will be teaching my children a more real perspective of this misunderstood holiday.

    November 24, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |