November 26, 2009

A Thanksgiving reflection.




Fred4Pres said...

Thank you for your photographs Ann.

And thanks to all Alhtouse reader commentators, to Meade, and especially to Ann for hosting.

Fred4Pres said...

George Washington's 1789 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 to implore His protection and favor; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me to "recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:"

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enable to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

George Washington

Given under my hand, at the city of New York, the 3d day of October, A.D. 1789.

Darcy said...

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

john said...

So we switched the station to WGN so we could watch the Chicago parade with all the local (and regional, even from Madison!) high school marching bands and the winning entry in the adult drinking drumline from the recent bowling competitions that took place all over Chicago.

Anything but that overprocessed, entirely lip-sinched, mostly previously recorded, and filled with 2nd-3rd tier "actors" and Today show weatherpeople that is called the CBS Macy's Day Parade. What drivel. When does the game start?

Hope someone is saving a turkey leg for AL, DTL, RC, that hill-billy caller (I forget his name), and all the trolls.

EDH said...

How long before the national Thanksgiving holiday is officially changed to Entitledreceiving?

AllenS said...

Thanksgiving, 2013
On the White House lawn
Occasion: Presidential pardon of turkey

POTUS Palin: "Watch this kids."

Children: "Eeeeeek!"

Pogo said...

i'll bet
that house on Thxgiving
will have wavy gravy
and a loosey goosey

john said...

We lost our dog to lymphoma last spring. He was only 4, but in his time he did a yeoman's job at keeping the kitchen floor so clean during both the major and the minor cooking holidays.

Now I'm sweeping up the dried breadcrumbs and wiping up from the dropped butterknife. A broom and a paper towel are such poor substitutes. I am so greatful to him for his years of service.

Kirby Olson said...

That's that pagoda again!

Chip Ahoy said...


ALAN, you gone and done it.


Bob said...

Today I get to enjoy the holiday at my parents with family. Still I think back to a few spent overseas where the dinner was on the Army. I've sent two of my troops lately to Afghanistan so at some point after dinner I'll sneak outside and reflect on how good a meal tastes without dust and generators humming.

That said it would be nice if either the Prez or Veep make a point of serving the holiday dinner someplace overseas. Bush and Cheney always made sure one was dishing it out somewhere. But that doesn't seem a priority with the new crew...

peter hoh said...

My portion of the feast is mostly prepared, I have a few moments before the rest of the family returns from church.

I, too, am thankful for this salon, but I'll be chatting with flesh and blood until it's time for bed.

Here's wishing everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving.

reader_iam said...

Thanksgiving greetings to all.

Andy said...

Good luck with that homework, Althouse!

And be careful that the dog doesn't eat your homework! That excuse has been taken. What will your excuse be?!

blake said...

Happy T-Day, folks!

Fred4Pres said...

This is an pretty simple but very good Thanksgiving dinner.

MamaM said...

Out under our last-to-drop-it's- leaves Sweet Gum, clipping branches for a leaf bouquet, with a 10 year old chocolate lab and a polydactyl tiger cat underfoot and the smell of woodsmoke in the air, I hear my husband calling from the kitchen window, "Do you need any more help out there?", and laugh.

The goodness of life is mysterious and varied; it turns up in the most unexpected places, blogs included.

I'm thankful for the mystery, variety, consistency, beauty, challenge, creativity, and courtesy I encounter daily on this site.

BJM said...

Happy Thanksgiving to Althouse & Meade and the most entertaining and enlightening commentariat online!


*Lifting my second Mimosa of the morning*

MnMark said...

I think we ought to just pause on Thanksgiving and give thanks that, for as many bad things as white people have done to other people in the world, at least we should get credit for one thing: we brought the wonders of diversity to the American Indians.

Before us they just had their monochromatic, insular little native societies. Then we came, bring the wonders of cultural and racial diversity and enriching new cultural innovations like alcohol. How bland the Indians' lives were before us!

Sure, there were probably some Indian conservatives who doubted that allowing massive numbers of foreigners to set up colonies in the Indians' lands was a good idea, and some probably argued that they could get the benefits of trade and cultural exchange with foreigners without actually letting the foreigners live here, but they were a bunch of xenophobes who feared change.

So here's my thanksgiving salute to diversity and all it brings us!

miller said...

AllanS wins the thread - I laughed out loud.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Lem said...

Happy Thanksgiving..

Ralph L said...

Thank you for your photographs Ann.
Indeed. The purple grass is now my desktop background.

Ralph L said...

And thank you Fred4Pres and AllenS.

Lem said...

Ok, Nobody is going to say it so I'm going to say it.

I'm thankfull computer systems are hackable ;)

Hide The Decline

Paddy O. said...

Happy Thanksgiving!!

save_the_rustbelt said...

Always remember, a bad day in the U.S. is almost always better than a good day anyplace else.

Best wishes to Anne and Meade on the first major holiday together.

Allen, you are funny.

Fred4Pres said...

Allen, very funny.

This not so much. Self appointed Palin stalker-in-chief Andrew Sullivan pledges to fight Sarah Palin forever:

Why I Worry
And why I will not relent on Palin and the danger she represents:

"The energy that actually shapes the world springs from emotions -- racial pride, leader-worship, religious belief, love of war -- which liberal intellectuals mechanically write off as anachronisms, and which they have usually destroyed so completely in themselves as to have lost all power of action ... [H.G. Wells] was, and still is, quite incapable of understanding that nationalism, religious bigotry and feudal loyalty are far more powerful forces than what he himself would describe as sanity."

And we appease or ignore those forces at our peril.

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I fear one day we will be discussing Andrew Sullivan's danger signs as we are doing now with Nidal Hassan. Ace's parody is already reality.

Michael Hasenstab said...

I have successfully completed the pre-nap nap and then the official nap. I am now easing into
to the post-nap nap.

Then there will be the early evening leftover snack, followed by the pre-bedtime nap.

I don't know why people think that I'm no longer entertaining to be around.

Sir Archy said...

To Professor Althouse.

Dear Madam,

As the Ghost of a Gentleman, dead these 260 Years and more, I may tell you that I have habitually perus'd the News-Papers and other Publick Prints of each Age that it hath been my honour to haunt.  I had noticed, on this, your American Day of Thanksgiving, that there is a want of the usual Writings, both in the Papers and upon this disembody'd tabula rasa of the Internet, denigrating the Settlement of America, castigating the European race, decrying the Christian Religion, and exalting the Noble Savages whom barbarous Europeans hath destroy'd by Greed, Rapine & Murther.  Nay, nearly all of the Writers I have consulted have little, save bland Platitudes, to offer upon this Occasion.

It seems that the Election of President Obama hath giv'n such writers a newfound Love of Country that had nearly been extinguish'd by the Depredations of President BushAmericans may now celebrate Thanksgiving in the new Spirit of Hop'd for Change.  I shall say nothing more, except that my ghostly Eyes had seen similalr Scribb'lings from such Wretches, employ'd by the Papers in my own Day, as would advance the Interests of a Faction, whether Whig or Tory.

I should like to conclude this Epistle by repeating what I said last Year in a similar Vein.  And, so with your leave, Madam, I quote myself, viz:—

The Story of the American Colonists' first ordain'd Day of Thanksgiving at Plymouth in New-England was wholly unfamiliar to me from my Youth. I may have read an Account of it, as an Example of proper Christian Gratitude for GOD's manifest Favour; but, as you may imagine, it made as little Impression upon me as one of the good Rev. Dimwiddie's ancient Sixty Sermons Saving Sinners' Sicke Soules, that was forc'd upon me at about the same Time. I had rather have read Pilgrim's Progress, and at least found Pleasure in a lively Style, than to have had my tiring Eye fall on such dreary Examples of Christian Perseverance as the Story of the bare Escape by the so-call'd Pilgrims of New-England from the Ill-Effects of their own Bungling, all puff'd up as Divine Favour.

Every Nation needs its Legends & Fables in order to bind the common People more closely together. The Arms of many a Family in Scotland, including my own, bear some heraldick Device from the Age of Robert the Bruce, whose Exploits were the Subject of several accurate Accounts from his own Day; yet, whose Legends abound in Scotch Lore, the Details of which may be not wholly truthful; and, indeed, may often be foolish Concoctions, cook'd up hundreds of Years after the Events they purport to describe. That does not prevent such Legends from serving their Purpose, which is the maintenance of an Ardour for the Liberty & Unity of the Scottish Nation amongst the People.

Similarly, you should not be asham'd of your own National Legends, such as that of your first Thanksgiving, whose main Import & Thrust are the noble and good ones of human Brotherhood, Fortitude in the Face of Adversity, and, Trust in the Beneficience of a Supreme Being. A People who value these Ideals will never willingly thrust their Necks into the Yokes created for them by those who sneer at such Principles and the Tales told to inculcate them.

Altho' the Story of the first American Thanksgiving is, in its Original, thin Gruel indeed (as I above aver), I cannot forbear to remark, by way of closing, that, were I alive, I should be very glad to get such a Dinner as is commonly prepar'd in its Honour.

Praying that your own Thanksgiving Dinner, and those of your Audience, should, in no wise, consist of Gruel, I am,


Your humble & obt. Servant,

Sir Archy