Canadians have a clear message for our southern neighbours ahead of American Thanksgiving celebrations this week: stay home and stay safe.
As Canada continues to weather its worst surge in COVID-19 cases six weeks after Canadian Thanksgiving, many here are warning that our southern neighbours could see an even bigger and more devastating spike following their annual gathering for turkey and gratitudes.
We know, because we’ve already gone through it. One of the oddities of North American calendar scheduling is the dichotomy between so-called Canadian Thanksgiving and American Thanksgiving. The two events are usually celebrated more than a month apart — the former in the second week in October and the latter is mid-to-late November.
That means in the year 2020, hindsight is literally 20-20 when it comes to Canadians and the risk of getting together for the holidays.
COVID-19 cases have spiked across Canada in the past month since Thanksgiving and Halloween. On Oct. 12, Canada had over 185,000 COVID-19 cases. Only six weeks later, that number has nearly doubled, with experts attributed much of the surge to personal gatherings like Thanksgiving dinners.
Canadians and Americans alike are saying the surge is proof that nothing is worth the risk.
Epidemiologist Jennifer Nuzzo told CBS News that Canada’s numbers should serve as a warning to Americans.
“Even without the data from Canada, this is a warning. We have reason to worry about Thanksgiving in the U.S. just on the principals of it,” Nuzzo said.
Thanksgiving dinners are particularly risky when it comes to spreading COVID-19, as they often involve family members travelling from different areas to mingle and share food and drinks in close proximity indoors.
Canadians who did stay home for turkey day are assuring Americans that a smaller Thanksgiving is not the end of the world — you can still eat pumpkin pie with just your household.
Ultimately in the battle of which country’s Thanksgiving is best, we know what the answer is.
Take it from Canadians: nothing beats a safe Thanksgiving this year.