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Native American students accused of being 'anti-Thanksgiving'

By Can Tran     Nov 21, 2012 in World
After the University of Virginia's American Indian Student Union had their "anti-Thanksgiving" potluck, conservatives took to the Internet accusing the students of waging "war on Thanksgiving" and promoting a liberal agenda.
In the United States, Thanksgiving is a national holiday. Nowadays, Thanksgiving is usually celebrated on the fourth Thursday of each November. For 2012, Thanksgiving is November 22. Due to debates on United States history, which usually ends up being political. It's usually a divisive topic between liberals versus conservatives and Democrats versus Republicans. Conservatives have been accused of “white washing” history. In response, conservatives have attacked that the liberal agenda has infiltrated the school's curriculum.
Back in 2010, there was sociopolitical outrage directed at the conservative leaning Texas Education Agency (TEA). Back in March, one of the TEA members said that history experts are leaning towards the left. They voted to change wording on the textbooks. It has concerned other states because what is taught in Texas could also be taught to them. One can ask: Why? This is because Texas is one of the states that buys the most textbooks. About six months later, in September, the Texas State Board of Education adopted a resolution that seeks to “urges” the textbook makers to limit what they say about Islam. Back then, Arne Duncan said what's taught in Texas wouldn't really affect the rest of the country because today's companies have the ability to customize textbooks via digital publishing.
This is an example on how many holidays such as Columbus Day are fair game for sociopolitical debate. There's no stopping the debate as people have their own views. Under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, we all have the right to free speech. Even Thanksgiving, which draws near, is also fair game for sociopolitical debate. For the longest time, there are arguments about the origins of Thanksgiving.
Recently, the Native American students attended this special event on the Native American perspective instead of just the usual commercial American perspective of Thanksgiving. This event was organized by the University of Virginia's American Indian Student Union. However, the media branded the event as an “anti-Thanksgiving” event. But, that's because it was called an “Anti-Thanksgiving Potluck” on the event flier. It's the Thanksgiving from the Native American viewpoint compared to the usual American viewpoint which is constantly observed and watched.
Katelyn Krauser, the president of the college's AISU, this is simply talking about the role Native Americans had during this holiday.
When word got out on the Internet, conservatives quickly took online. Apparently, many conservatives weren't pleased upon hearing such an event take place. They called it as “liberal activism.” According to a Huffington Post article, the sociopolitical backlash from the conservatives may be blown out of proportion. This is because the event didn't cause much attention and only one news station, an NBC affiliate, expressed interest in the event. That station is NBC29.
Despite that, there is much backlash from the conservatives. In an article on Policy Mic, pictures were taken by conservatives expressing their anger at the potluck. They took to social media sites such as Facebook to express their outrage. One person posted on Facebook accusing the student group of “ruining every fun thing in American culture.” There's another person accusing liberals of trying to kill Thanksgiving. They were trying to spin the thing around.
However, there are people on Facebook that acknowledged what happened but gave the “too freaking bad” response. One person went saying that the “victor gets the spoils and they should grow up.” There was even one racist post which was also caught on picture.
A piece on the National Review said that it was an act of liberals trying to put an end to Thanksgiving.
But, this may as well blow over once Thanksgiving passes. Then, this can be brought up again during the next Thanksgiving holidays. Such arguments like this are going to keep happening for many years to come.
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