“In light of recent world events (the election of Donald Trump), many Americans are facing a particularly daunting Thanksgiving dinner with relatives who voted differently on Election Day, and may be in need of a lighthearted activity to reach across the aisle. Here are some art projects to help you and your family work through your feelings and heal political divisions — if only for an hour or two.” Source
It’s weird that the world has come to this. Thanksgiving was always a fun holiday, but it was also always a nightmare for folks who don’t get along with their folks. And that’s a lot of people.
In the same way, the US election has had the world — and the US, of course — divided beyond recognition. With red and blue flags waving all around, some people standing with her, yet some others vouching to make America great again, I’m pretty sure Thanksgiving isn’t the most anticipated holiday right now. And it’s understandable too. After all, I wouldn’t want to talk about politics with my family. Or talk about anything at all, if I could.
But times are blue and red has taken over. So how would you deal with a whole day locked up in a room with people you don’t like, stuffing yourself with stuffed turkey? Alanna Martinez from the Observer (quoted above) says you should do some craftwork together. It builds teamwork and can keep you from raging into a political debate, she says.
I agree. Crafting is a nice activity and it would make the day all the more bearable. But here’s what I don’t understand: why have we come to a situation where we need art to keep our mouths shut?
Sure, art soothes your soul, calms your nerves, and helps you dial down your tone when speaking to the uncle, twice removed. But as a humanities student myself, I can say that the Arts are a way of life, and not something you do when you can’t find an alternative coping mechanism.
In this piece, the author explains a few specific “Thanksgivingy” crafts which, I think, are all great. What I can’t agree, though, is that we need a reason—president-elect Trump in this case— to make these crafts. People should turn to art because they like creating art and not just because their therapist told them to. Proud though I am that therapists recommend art, it’s still an insult to us who’ve been insulted our whole lives just because we spend our lives on arts.
I’d share this article with my friends, I’d tell them it’s all true and that making these crafts together with their families would make Thanksgiving more like giving thanks than giving sparks. However, I still believe that by limiting arts and crafts to such petty issues, we limit the potential of art itself. We don’t need art as a temporary stress buster. Art for the sake of art — that’s what we need more of.
I’ve signed up for the Incredible Blogger Marathon Challenge. It’s a ten-task-challenge that can span up to fifteen days. This post is my response to the seventh day: The News and Paper Challenge. The challenge is to discuss my views on a news article.