The Atheist War on Thanksgiving

The Atheist War on Thanksgiving November 24, 2015

holiday mix

(via Facebook open source)

Did you hear about the atheist war on Thanksgiving?

Yeah, me either.

As far as I know, there is no atheist war on Thanksgiving and since the mythological War on Christmas hysteria started well before Halloween this year, it’s a wonder anyone even thinks about Thanksgiving, except as an excuse to do some major belt busting.

However, today I was asked why someone like me, an atheist, even bothers celebrating Thanksgiving due to not having someone to “thank”. I assume this person means since I don’t feel compelled to utter fake and rote statements of gratitude to a mythological man in the sky, I must be incapable of reflecting upon those things I feel grateful for.

That couldn’t be further from the truth. I may not thank invisible sky beings for the things that matter to me but I certainly have real people who I’m grateful to every day and who probably don’t hear it enough from me.

I’m grateful to my husband, who brings me joy and laughter and who brought a wonderful young stepdaughter into my life.

I’m grateful to my sisters, my best friends since we were born, who are endlessly interesting and entertaining.

I’m grateful to my friends, who are family in every sense of the word except by blood.

I’m grateful to the wonderful activists who are out there fighting the good fights against theocracy, racism, sexism, discrimination, and for the homeless, the economically disadvantaged, the children, and too many other worthy causes to list.

I’m grateful to everyone in my life who make sure that I have too many examples to list and I’m sure my fellow atheists have many examples as well. Christians and other religionists don’t hold a monopoly on gratitude.

I wonder how long it will be before a fictional “War on Thanksgiving” joins the equally fictional “War on Christmas” in the pantheon of modern American myths.

But maybe it has started and the charge is being led by every shopper who shops on Thanksgiving at those stores with owners too selfish and greedy to let their employees have this one day with their families.

Ironically, many of these people will be the same ones whose outrage meters will flip out should someone have the temerity to wish them Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas.

I’m grateful I’m not one of them.

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