The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) has provided families with the resources needed to “decolonize” Thanksgiving, including guidance on indigenous land acknowledgement.
“Thanksgiving is a day that can be difficult for many to celebrate as we reflect on the history of the holiday and the horrors inflicted on our indigenous populations,” DCPS Chancellor Lewis D. Ferebee said in an email sent to the families of students on November 18.
He added that, for those who did choose to celebrate, the equity team was sharing suggestions “for how you can consider decolonizing your Thanksgiving.”
“If you host a Thanksgiving meal, consider doing a land acknowledgement,” said Ferebee.
A link provided in the email led to tips on how to correctly support the indigenous people “to whom the land belongs.”
“Don’t sugarcoat the past. Use terms like genocide, ethnic cleansing, stolen land, and forced removal to reflect actions taken by colonizers,” one of the recommendations read.
The guidance states that indigenous people should not be treated as “a relic of the past” and that land acknowledgements should function as “living celebrations of Indigenous communities.”
Ferebee also included in his email two articles on the matter, along with two lists of books about Native Americans – one list for adults and the other for children.
“Looking for another reason to escape the public education propaganda camps, here it is,” the former chaplain of the Idaho Senate, Bryan Fischer, wrote on Twitter, commenting on the article that had brought Ferebee’s email to the attention of the wider public.
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