Thursday, November 25, 2010

It's Thanksgiving But It's Not All "Happy."

I can't muster up the same kind of energy I've had throughout the last 13 MoFo posts. I just can't.

To quote the current Facebook status of a friend, Lisa Goetz,


"Over two thousand birds have suffered and died this year because of the BP oil spill. 45 million birds suffer and die every year for Thanksgiving."


And another, the Facebook status of my friend, R,  


"['As long as people will shed the blood of innocent creatures there can be no peace, no liberty, no harmony between people. Slaughter and justice cannot dwell together.'] Happy Thanksgiving"


I'm just not in the mood for celebrating, you know? And who could, when you really stop to think about it. I know I'm "supposed" to blog about vegan food and carry on this month's Vegan MoFo spirit, I do. I mean, after all, the whole point of Vegan MoFo is to make veganism a reality. It just so happens that food is the way through which MoFo works toward this - food, a topic that, for me, usually means joy. 


Right now, to me, "Thanksgiving" feels like some sort of antithesis to joy. And I'm not just talking about the turkeys. I'm talking about the perpetuation of violence, I'm talking about turning a blind eye to mass murder. And the sick sense of apathy, or entitlement, or defeat, or all of these. Right now, "Thanksgiving" feels to me like nothing but the stubborn adherence to a tradition built on deceit and inequality. This land is your land, this land is my land. This land belongs to you and me!


So it feels like sugarcoating to write about something joyful (food) on such a day. For me, at least. 


I'm not going to post photos in some cosmic sense of optimism that I simply do not feel right now. I'm not going to "channel my energy into something productive" in this instance here. That is not always the best solution, in my opinion. 


On this day, I will be with loved ones, and I will enjoy the delicious cruelty-free food I've prepared for myself and whoever else is willing to try it. I will laugh and feel glad for the things I always feel glad for. But I will not deny these other feelings I'm having. They exist for good reason. 


People always tell each other, "best to not make waves." I couldn't disagree more. Often, it is making waves that changes the course of history. World, I'm mad. And you should be, too. This isn't about me, and this isn't about you. It's bigger than that. It's about us. It's about the animals, the trees and the oceans and the people who get left out in the cold, ostracised, forgotten about or violated, abused, bullied. I won't accept this. Not on my watch. We, as humans, can do better than this. "Blame" is irrelevant here. It is crucial to accept this as everyone's responsibility. Every single one of us can be an agent of change if we choose to be. 


“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” - Gandhi

Every step counts.


  1. I couldn't have said it better myself. In fact, I didn't and just linked to this in my post.

  2. What an incredible post... I couldn't have said it better myself either.

    While at a vegan ThanksLIVING brunch at my friend's, we witnessed her cat attack a pocket gopher and my friends and I knew we couldn't celebrate and sit idly by while a living being was suffering.

    After many phone calls, we found an animal rehabber who told us to bring Barkley on over (yes we named him).

    While it's not clear whether or not he will make it yet (she thinks probably not but that he has a chance), I am glad to have others in my life who acknowledge that perpetuating pain, suffering and slaughter in any living being is horribly unnecessary and upsetting.