Introducing The Next Generation Of Leaders And Thinkers

A Plant-Based Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is a holiday close to the hearts of many, and does theoretically represent values we should all embody. However, our celebration is based upon inaccurate history. We celebrate events that didn’t happen and eat foods that weren’t even eaten at the first Thanksgiving. The traditions we take part in are founded in fiction, and it’s only natural how defensive we’ve become of them. The mention of change at the dinner table almost always stirs up a storm. My whole life, Thanksgiving has been filled with tradition. A huge tradition in many homes is the inclusion of the turkey as the main part of the meal; with even the discussion of omitting this entree, many get offended. I’m here to explain why that’s understandable, but also to point out why it’s still not justifiable.

Food bonds us together. Food is a fundamental part of any relationship, and eating together is something that brings people closer. When we all share a meal, it promotes cohesiveness, sharing, and more. That’s something that makes the holidays in general special- we all make more time to spend with each other, where this might not be possible throughout the year. When someone disrupts this time or tries to encourage new ways, we can feel threatened. This is a natural response and is totally expected. What we fail to recognize is that some traditions are based upon lack of knowledge. Today we know how animal agriculture negatives impacts the environment, our health, and animal welfare itself; all it takes is a little research to see just how much it affects almost every realm of life in a negative way. Perhaps we can change customs to accommodate new knowledge.

One of the ways in which we can do this is through bringing a plant-based dish to this year’s meal. Just because a meal is without meat, the possibility for tastiness is not squandered- rest assured you can prepare something that people will be asking for seconds (and maybe even thirds) of! There are truly countless recipe options all over the web, and you can even amend one of your families tried and true recipes.

Even if not everyone tries it, you’ll be getting a message out there and making your family members and friends think about something they might not have previously. Who knows, someone might even love your dish! There’s always room for a little change here and there, and the little steps toward sustainability always add up.

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