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Why I like Thanksgiving more than Christmas

Illustration for article titled Why I like Thanksgiving more than Christmas

I really like Thanksgiving you guys. Unlike Christmas, Thanksgiving is for everyone. Yes, originally we were supposed to be giving thanks to god for the harvest, but there's nothing about Thanksgiving that is specific to one religion or that excludes atheists. With Christmas, we're all supposed to suck up being bombarded by Christian songs and imagery and "celebrate the season" no matter what our religious beliefs (Christmas only really became an important holiday in Victorian times and much of the imagery was stolen from the pagans anyway). I'm an atheist and I have no desire to celebrate Jesus' birth no matter how commercialized and secular the holiday has become. It makes me feel like a hypocrite going to mass (or an asshole if I refuse) and I don't like feeling obligated to buy gifts (is it a gift if you have to give it?).


The one thing I wish we would do in the US is move away from the idea of the "First Thanksgiving" and return to the idea of Thanksgiving being a harvest festival. Even if we're not actually out there threshing wheat, we can still celebrate getting together with friends and family before onset of winter. Thanksgiving is not about Pilgrims and Indians; we've celebrated it for a lot of things over the years. It wasn't even a regular national holiday until the Civil War so there's no reason it has to be about colonialism and genocide.

I know not everyone has something to be thankful for or gets to see family or friends over the holiday, but as far as holidays go, I still think it's better than Christmas.

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