Thursday, November 23, 2017

The 2017 First Nations Thanksgiving Broadcast

The Thanksgiving story that we all grew up on is not the whole story.  That moment of mutual peace and respect is a heart-warming story, to be sure. But it is not the whole story. What we fail to recognize is that just a generation after the first Thanksgiving, the Pilgrims and the Natives were at war in what was the worst war per capita to occur on North American soil. That war was King Philip's War and it devastated Native populations in the northeast. Those native who weren't killed, were enslaved and sent to the West Indies. Some survivors escaped to Canada. The Pilgrims saw this victory as a message from God that they had the right to take Native land.  And take land they did.

The rest of the history of the relationship between the United States and First Nations is anything but heartwarming.

If you would like a basic primer on this history, I recommend reading Dee Brown's book, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. This book changed my view of history.

On this Thanksgiving, we are doing a small part in trying to honor First Nations by playing a selection of songs from First Nation artists. Our hope is that on this Thanksgiving, we take a moment to consider those who were here first and who have lived a different narrative of North America. Click on the links below to learn more about these artists.

Annie Humphrey
Bill Miller 
Buddy Red Bow 
Buffy Sainte Marie
Jim Boyd
Joanne Shenandoah
John Trudell 
Mary Youngblood
Pura Fé 
R. Carlos Nakai 
Robbie Robertson
Robert Mirabal
Sharon Burch


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