So Halloween was fun once again this year, am I right fellow Australians? And yes, the debate as to whether we need Halloween in Australia has continued on post-celebrations via social media to wrap up the event.
Here’s two “humorous” tweets I found on Twitter; one pre-Halloween and one post-Halloween.
— michelle wollaston (@mswolly) October 19, 2013
I was prepared to go along with a bit of Halloween stupidity, but please Australia, no #Thanksgiving bandwagon nonsense.
— R Siemienowicz (@Milan2Pinsk) November 23, 2012
Can you see what those two tweets have in common? Maybe these two further examples will help you guess correctly…
Why is Australia celebrating Halloween? What’s next? Thanksgiving or independence day? Seriously… It’s not our tradition! #Halloween
— Lionel Austin (@lionelaust) October 30, 2012
Tell me again why everyone in Australia is going gaga over Halloween? Please tell me Thanksgiving isn’t next! #Americanisationsucks
— Kate Gordon (@misscackle) October 28, 2011
It’s the slippery slope style logic used in these arguments. You know, allowing one thing will lead to another that’s even worse than the first thing?
The slippery slope argument is famously used by those against same-sex marriage because of course, as many stupid anti-gay marriage people will tell you…
Yes, I can see* the logic in that. Click on that quote above if you want to see some funny tweets on Twitter about that slippery slope argument.
So here’s the crux of the argument you get from those whore ARE opposed to Halloween in Australia.
“Halloween in Australia will lead to us having to celebrate Thanksgiving.”
Yes, I can also see* the logic in that. And not only Thanksgiving, but as Lionel Austin (@lionelaust) suggested, we’ll also be celebrating Independence Day. Yes, I can see*… No, I’m not finishing that off because by now I’m sure you’ve worked out that sarcasm I’m implying with the asterisk (*No I can’t.) I can’t see the logic there. Just because we adopt one new celebration doesn’t mean we have to adopt another.
But having said that, what’s wrong with celebrating yet another “Americanised” tradition that they (once again)
stole borrowed from another country?
The Thanksgiving holiday’s history in North America is rooted in English traditions dating from the Protestant Reformation. It also has aspects of a harvest festival, even though the harvest in New England occurs well before the late-November date on which the modern Thanksgiving holiday is celebrated. Source – Hodgson, Godfrey (2006). A Great and Godly Adventure; The Pilgrims and the Myth of the First Thanksgiving
So it’s actually an English tradition and us “traditional” Australians can deal with that, right? Remember when we used to have Bonfire night on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend that was a borrowed the building of bonfires and the setting off of fireworks from Guy Fawkes Day?
So here’s some reasons why I think we should celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia.
1. All that scooped out pumpkin is going to waste
This year we made our first jack-o’-lantern using a large pumpkin and there was so much scooped out pumpkin that could have been turned into pumpkin soup but not much else. It’s not like the cubes of pumpkin that I cook up for the pumpkin, feta, rocket and pine nut salad I love making. It’s not like the wedges of pumpkin you can stick on the barbecue. It’s flakes of scooped out pumpkin that really needs to be turned into something like, oh, you know, a traditional Thanksgiving pumpkin pie…
Okay, I’ll conceded that this one IS a knock-on of us having Halloween, but Halloween is here to stay so get over it, okay? And if we’re taking on this new tradition, we’re taking it on holus bolus.
2. Another excuse to get together with family and friends
Let’s face it, we don’t really need and excuse to have a barbecue and invite friends and family over, but when you lock in an annual tradition, that WILL make it happen. And of course, when you’ve got a bunch of people coming over for a barbecue, it’s another good excuse to…
3. Fill up a tub with ice and cold drinks
I feel sorry for the Americans when it hits November. While I shared on Facebook a screenshot of my weather app last Friday showing the temperature as 41°C or 105.8°F and wrote “and it’s not even summer”, my American friends were all writing back that they were experiencing blizzards and snow storms and snow days, and it’s “not even winter.” Because of that, I’m sure that “ice cold drinks” in the furthest from their minds. They’re thinking hot chocolate and egg nog, and other kinds of nogs as well. But here, in Australia, we don’t need to nog it up because; beer.
Not just beer, but wine and champagne (are we still allowed to call our “sparkling wine” that?) We can celebrate our Thanksgiving by toasting to the coming season of backyard cricket, fresh summer fruits (we need to be healthy too) and long days at the beach.
4. We need something to separate Halloween and Christmas…
— Lynnette Hoffman (@NomadLynnette) October 9, 2013
Yes, I CAN see the logic in that. Without Thanksgiving the shops start putting up Christmas decorations on the First of November. Thanksgiving <font = ironic> will “obviously” put and end the that. </end font>
5. That other new “tradition” The Elf on the Shelf®
As I wrote in my article 6 Reasons Why You Should Hate The Elf On The Shelf last year, according to the book, The Elf on the Shelf® appears the day after Thanksgiving. Now I guess you might think it’s somewhat hypocritical of me to suggest that we need Thanksgiving so we know when to start a new tradition that I’m bagging out, but just as I suggested to those anti-Halloween people, this is a tradition that people are taking up and, well, I just need to get over it and accept it.
And if it means we get Thanksgiving, I am all for that…
6. Global Growth
Remember last week when the twenty most powerful world leaders met in Brisbane for the G20 Summit? The G20 leaders approved a package estimated to increase global growth by at least 2.1% and if Australia is going to be part of that economic growth, we need to stimulate retail spending, jobs growth and tax revenue via the GST.
So bring on more celebrations I say; it’s good for the economy.
So what do you think? Should we take on Thanksgiving in Australia? And if you’re from America and Canada and you’re reading this, sell it to my other readers. Tell us why Thanksgiving is so great in your book.