Hey! All You White Colonialists Out There: Here’s How You ‘Decolonize’ Your Family Thanksgiving Dinner

Lewis Ferebee, the chancellor of D.C. Public Schools, is a conscientious radical. He’s not much of a school administrator, judging by students’ test scores. But when it comes to the really important stuff like developing guidelines for proper woke behavior, he is unmatched.

Ferebee wrote a letter to the employees of the Washington, D.C., school district, thanking them for working so hard to indoctrinate, er, educate the kids. He urged the employees’ families to stay safe, get their booster shots, and be good by “limiting our travel and avoiding high-risk environments.”

It sounds like Mr. Ferebee doesn’t want anyone to go over the river and through the woods to grandma’s house. Granny could easily be “high risk.”


But Ferebee was also worried about Thanksgiving, which 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.”

Most of us solve that problem by not talking about massacres of Native Americans by whites or land grabs by the United States government. It’s not a popular dinner table conversation, that’s for sure.

But Ferebee thinks it should be.

Washington Examiner:

“If you celebrate, our Equity team has shared resources for how you can consider decolonizing your Thanksgiving,” Ferebee wrote.

“If you host a Thanksgiving meal, consider doing a land acknowledgement,” he continued, linking to a government website that provides instructions on how to make an “Indigenous Land Acknowledgement Statement.”

In addition to recommending two books on Native Americans, Ferebee also linked to two websites that provide different steps for “decolonizing” Thanksgiving, such as eating Native American dishes for dinner or calling your congressional representative to advocate on behalf of a tribe’s reservation.

What in the Wide, Wide World of Sports is a “land acknowledgment”? Ferebee links to the Native Governance Center, which explains everything.

Start with self-reflection. Before starting work on your land acknowledgment statement, reflect on the process:

Why am I doing this land acknowledgment? (If you’re hoping to inspire others to take action to support Indigenous communities, you’re on the right track. If you’re delivering a land acknowledgment out of guilt or because everyone else is doing it, more self-reflection is in order.)
What is my end goal? (What do you hope listeners will do after hearing the acknowledgment?)
When will I have the largest impact? (Think about your timing and audience, specifically.

Do your homework. Put in the time necessary to research the following topics:

The Indigenous people to whom the land belongs.
The history of the land and any related treaties.

It appears that if you wanted to include a “land acknowledgment” in your Thanksgiving “celebration,” you should have started on your statement about a month ago.

As for eating Native American dishes for dinner, I’ll pass. I eat Native American stuff all the time — corn, berries, meat, etc. But a truly authentic Native American dish might include dog and various unsavory parts of game animals like deer and elk. I won’t eat turkey gizzards, so deer heart is out.

I find it interesting that after trying to gin up white guilt to the max, this Native Governance site is saying that if you feel guilt, your gesture is meaningless. Don’t you wish they’d make up their mind?

Related: On Thanksgiving, Americans Should Be Thankful for the Pilgrims