I love Thanksgiving. Of all the holidays in America, this is by far my favorite. Thanksgiving is a purely American holiday, exclusive of no citizen. Though initially a religious multi-day feast giving thanks to God for a bountiful harvest, it is at its heart of hearts a celebration of success. The original Thanksgiving celebrated the successful pilgrimage across the ocean, successful creation of a settlement, and of course, a successful harvest.
Thanksgiving is perhaps the only holiday enjoyed by Christians, Jews, Muslims, Atheists, and any one else sharing the common thread of American citizenship and the freedoms it affords us. What Thanksgiving symbolizes to each of us may vary but at its core is a uniquely American celebration, honoring the country's productive nature and the many accomplishments we've made.
We would not be such a productive and strong nation if not for the foresight of our Founders and a history full of strong leaders who've governed with We The People in mind. Our system of self-governing is often slow and frequently bumpy but it was designed to be that way in order to prevent us from changing with every political whim. As the first nation with a written Constitution, the United States is founded on certain principles and those principles have been the foundation of a productive and powerful people.
In these days of...questionable leadership...I'm thankful for those individuals and elected officials who have been vocally opposing harmful policy. Policies like The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and The Food Safety Modernization Act (The Monsanto Bill) have been met with strong opposition by people who understand and fight for the principles America was founded upon. I'm thankful for peoples' politicians like Rep. Ron Paul who has sponsored the American Traveler Dignity Act, fighting against unreasonable TSA procedure. And, slow as it is, I'm thankful I live in a nation that has provided checks and balances to prevent government from making rash decisions and allowing us time to fix what mistakes are made.
So when you're enjoying your Thanksgiving feast - whether its turkey, ham, turducken or tofurkey - remember that it is more than a day of remembrance or gratitude. It should also serve as a call to action; the rights provided by self-government also require a responsibility from each one of us. We've become this prosperous thanks to the American principles of productivity and liberty. Don't let any of our leaders pretend otherwise.