Thanksgiving: A Native American View by Jacqueline Keeler--Part Three
Among the Dakota, my father's people, they say, when asked to give, "Are we not Dakota and alive?"
It was believed that by giving there would be enough for all -- the exact opposite of the system we live in now, which is based on selling, not giving.
To the Pilgrims, and most English and European peoples, the Wampanoags were heathens, and of the Devil. They saw Squanto not as an equal but as an instrument of their God to help his chosen people, themselves.
|By Jan van Scorel, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=23605252|
Since that initial sharing, Native American food has spread around the world. Nearly 70 percent of all crops grown today were originally cultivated by Native American peoples.
I sometimes wonder what they ate in Europe before they met us. Spaghetti without tomatoes? Meat and potatoes without potatoes?
|16th century illustration of a tomato plant|
And at the "first Thanksgiving" the Wampanoags provided most of the food -- and signed a treaty granting Pilgrims the right to the land at Plymouth, the real reason for the first Thanksgiving.