In 1789 George Washington issued this Thanksgiving Proclamation: “Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly implore His protection, aid and favors….Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26 day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these states to the service of the great and glorious Being, who is the Beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be.”
For the past sixty years the Left has been granted the opportunity to set the cultural table of the nation. The menu can no longer be pictured by anything Norman Rockwell ever painted. With our first President moving closer to the cross hairs of liberal artillery, is it only a matter of time before the Thanksgiving turkey is replaced with road kill? President Washington’s premeditated willingness to reference the God of the Bible is problematic to those who question the source of all blessings (Psalm 33:12).
It is widely recognized that the first American Thanksgiving was celebrated by the Plymouth colony Pilgrims in the fall of 1624. One of Governor Bradford’s early acts was the signing of a treaty with neighboring Indians who instructed the colonists in cultivation and partook with them in the observance. This delightful morsel of history should be an appetizer of excellence for the progressives. Consider: The intruders (white folks) were instructed by a superior race for their very survival which resulted in multi-culturalism. How delicious---at least as good as cold shrimp served with a spicy cocktail sauce.
One would wonder why the Reformers haven’t extrapolated a series of substantiations from these early episodes. Could it be that a deeper exploration of the Pilgrims’ early history would be counterproductive to leftist rhetoric? The Pilgrims initiated their adventure by embracing a communal land system. Human nature being what it is, those who labored less expected an equal amount with those who worked more. After three years socialism was replaced with capitalism by granting each man an acre of his own. A plentiful harvest followed and the settlers subsequently also found some small profit in the fur trade. By 1627 Bradford and the other Pilgrim fathers were able to buy out the London merchants who had financed the expeditions, thus severing their financial connection with England. The failure of socialism coupled with the Pilgrims’ penchant for regarding the Scriptures as a final source of authority does not play well for the modern change agents.
Before the elites demolish Thanksgiving, I submit a proposition of support for its continuance. The establishment of a national Thanksgiving Day on a permanent annual basis was largely the result of the work of Sara Josepha Hale. Beginning in 1827, when she was the editor of the “Ladies Magazine” in Boston, she began to urge the observance of a uniform day throughout the country to express thanks for the blessings of the year. She wrote a myriad of editorials in support of the concept in conjunction with dozens of letters to successive Presidents and Governors. Hale’s articles undoubtedly prompted Abraham Lincoln to issue the proclamation on October 3, 1863, setting aside the last Thursday in November, 1863 as a national Thanksgiving Day.
Mashed potatoes with mouth-watering mushroom gravy cannot exceed this golden opportunity. An extraordinary woman of incredible accomplishment should be immortalized, illustrating the capability of the feminine gender. It’s troubling to realize that 95% of all Americans have no idea who Sarah Hale was. Why isn’t she considered iconic by the feminist movement? Perhaps her name is conspicuously absent because she crusaded for thankfulness which makes no demands nor seeks recognition or fame. Of course, Lincoln’s proclamation did Hale no favors in spring boarding her name into future generations. He concluded his decree with: “to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.” It’s that "God business" that muddies the waters.
A question worth pondering is: “For what are liberals thankful?” With no attempt to degrade, I am certain that many are thankful for family, friends and things that are close to them. However, the platform that they constantly promote suggests no gratitude for our national heritage. American exceptionalism is now considered a blight rather than a blessing. The Left feigns an allegiance to “freedom of speech,” but is continually making attempts to curtail it. This can’t be a demonstration of thankfulness for it. Capitalism has afforded the upward mobility to millions of our citizens that most in communist China will never realize.
I, for one, am exceedingly grateful for the Bible which provides the foundation stones of the principles upon which this nation was built. “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request (not demands) be made known unto God” (Philippians 4:6).
Matthew Henry, the famous scholar, was once accosted by thieves and robbed of his purse. He wrote these words in his diary: “Let me be thankful first, because I was never robbed before; second, because, although they took my purse, they did not take my life; third, because, although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth, because it was I who was robbed, not I who robbed.”
It would be a wretched indictment to rob anyone of every possible opportunity to be thankful. Twisted politics has frequently done just that.