What Does Thanksgiving Mean?

After reading David Leonhardt’s article “Turn Off Your Phone For Thanksgiving,” there were a few key points that I noted. Throughout the article, he talks about how people are constantly staring at their screens instead of interacting with their family or friends during Thanksgiving. He also advises people to spend a day off their phones, calling it a “Tech Shabbat.” The most memorable line in the article was in the beginning where he writes “when the holiday weekend is ending, many will lament that they don’t get to spend enough time with those relatives and friends, but during the weekend itself, these same lamenters will spend a lot of time ignoring the people around them and distractedly staring into their phones.” I think that this statement applies to many people — myself included. 

As the name suggests, Thanksgiving is supposed to be a holiday where people feel thankful for what they have; however, I would not say I am especially grateful on Thanksgiving. I tend to reflect on my day every night before I go to bed and Thanksgiving reflections are no different than my nightly routine. In my opinion, Thanksgiving is enjoyable, but it also feels almost like any other family gathering. Me and my family often gather every few months for dinner to celebrate a holiday and even for no specific reason sometimes. The only difference between all the other gatherings and the Thanksgiving gathering is that my family will have a mix of Asian food and American food rather than just having Chinese food. Me and my cousins are also constantly on our phones rather than interacting with one another whenever we have a gathering. I have experienced multiple times going through a day without my phone and I do agree that it is very calming. I have not tried going a day without my phone during a holiday or gathering, but I might try it next time.