Miles Jaye

As Thanksgiving is a particularly American observance, holiday, and celebration based on the Pilgrim’s interaction with the Wampanoag’s, I think it is fitting that I offer a special, personal thanks to America. Interestingly, the original holiday, dating back to the early 1600’s, was known as a rejoicing and was observed not by feasting but fasting. It’s worth noting, fasting would do little to feed a modern economy whereas feasting followed by so-called, Black Friday, sets the shopping season off to a fast start.

First, I’d like to thank America for so convincingly shaping and repackaging genocide as essential, a necessary component of nation building without which we could not call America home, claiming previously occupied and owned territories as states, as God-given land of the free and home of the brave.

Thank you, America, for a lifelong battle with an undiagnosed psychosis, to which I attribute an impaired ability to reckon psychologically and emotionally with the realities of right and wrong, good and evil. I am among those who actually believed and invested in the myth that good and right were rewarded and the outcome of bad, evil or wrongdoing was harsh punishment. Over time, I’ve learned the “truth.”   

Thank you for my lifelong struggle with an inferiority condition inflicted upon those deemed minorities. The inferiority condition is often referred to as an inferiority complex, however, there’s nothing complex about it. It’s simply a matter of indoctrination and saturation through language and culture that all that I am and all that I represent and that represents me, is inferior to a superior culture. Thank you for the ongoing challenge of positive self-identity. 

Thank you for a portrayal of a faith and a Holy chronical steeped in Eurocentricity. God is White, Jesus is White, Mary and Joseph were White, as were Abraham, Moses, Joshua, John, Noah, and David. Any non-Whites in Biblical history were enemies of God’s chosen people or the cursed line of Ham. It’s a wonder ham is so popular on Thanksgiving.

Thank you for allowing me to unfairly judge my parents as incapable of maintaining a marital relationship sufficient to support and nurture a healthy, happy home, when in fact, they were both suffering from and struggling with the same psychosis I wrestle with every day of my life. Thank you for allowing me to judge my father more than loving, respecting and honoring him as the Bible instructs. Thank you for allowing me to subconsciously blame my mother for somehow failing to keep my father at home with his family. Thank you for allowing me to perpetuate the cycle. 

Thank you for constructing a system so vile, so sinister, that it would throw a beautiful people into an ongoing cycle of self-hate, in-fighting, and seemingly unwinnable battles for civil and human rights. Thank you for nightmarish images of lynchings. Thank you for images of Martin on the balcony, Malcolm on the stage, and Emmitt’s open coffin. Thank you for the image of Miles Davis’ bloodied face.

As we prepare for a hearty Thanksgiving meal, allow me to offer the fact that, so-called, Native Americans, from Massachusetts to Florida and all across the continent to the far Northwest and Southwest, have an entirely different view of the first shared harvest, the holiday, and given the outcome of the European invasion of their ancestral homeland, which should be quite understandable. Perhaps the day should be called, Thanks-taking. Bon appetite!

That’s what’s on my mind!



Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *