Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday, tracing its roots back 400 years to the Pilgrims and Indigenous People, long before there was even a thought of a United States of America.
Thanksgiving is the ultimate family-centered holiday. It has no religious meaning, no national-celebration connotations, and no required gift-giving. It lacks the commercialism, religiosity, solemnity, and political overtones of all of our other national observances.
It is the only day on the calendar when we have no obligation other than to spend the day with those who mean the most to us. It asks nothing more from each of us (other than for the person who is doing all the cooking!) beyond just showing up and enjoying the company of our family and friends and then having a great meal.
Thanksgiving is a national celebration that serves to remind us how blessed we are at a time when circumstances are so cruel for so many others in a world in which there are more refugees than at any time since the end of World War II thanks to Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.
Even amidst this time of turbulence in our own country, we all can agree that Thanksgiving makes us aware of how much we have to be thankful for. Despite our present trials and tribulations, Americans are remarkably fortunate to be in a country such as ours.
Thanksgiving serves as a rare day for relaxation, reflection, and, inevitably (at least for some of us) a post-dinner nap while watching a football game or an early night of sleep. In a time when so many of us are connected 24/7 to some instrument of communication, it truly is a relief to have a day when we can just shut it all off. We wish all of our readers a happy — and restful — Thanksgiving.