The United States is a cultural melting pot, or as some now call it, a salad bowl. How can we honor cultural diversity during the holidays? The best way is by having interfaith celebrations that don't mock other cultures and that respect those with different cultural traditions. That means no inappropriate Halloween costumes, understanding why some Native Americans view Thanksgiving as racist and why blacks celebrate Kwanzaa.
Compromise is all it takes for multicultural families to celebrate the holidays in a way that reflects the diversity each member brings to the table. By recognizing different cultural traditions, you can put a new spin on the way you’ve long honored the holidays. Plus, you'll learn loads in the process. That's one of the many rewards of holding interfaith and multicultural holiday festivities.
For many Americans, Thanksgiving means family, food and football. For others, particularly Native Americans, the day is one of mourning. So, should Thanksgiving be celebrated? Is it possible to have a Thanksgiving celebration that does not romanticize interactions between Pilgrims and American Indians?
Still deciding what to be for Halloween? If you’re thinking about dressing up as an Indian, a Gypsy or a Geisha, you might want to reconsider. Avoid racially offensive Halloween costumes. Celebrate Halloween in a way that doesn't mock people from different cultures. Think about how you would feel if your ethnic group became the butt of a silly Halloween frock.
Just what is Kwanzaa? One of the newer American holidays, Kwanzaa originated in the turbulent 1960s to instill racial pride and unity in the black community. Now, fully recognized in mainstream America and elsewhere, Kwanzaa is widely celebrated. That doesn't mean the holiday doesn't have its critics, though. Not all blacks celebrate this day. That's because African Americans don't necessarily view Kwanzaa as representing them culturally or spiritually.
In today’s society, blacks are widely represented in U.S. society. So, is Black History Month still relevant, or worse yet, is it racist? The benefits and drawbacks to celebrating black history may be more complex than you think. Many African Americans themselves are reconsidering celebrating this month.