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Happy Thanksgiving!

Saints and Strangers: The First Thanksgiving   

“As Philbrick notes, the colonists didn’t call the event Thanksgiving, a term that to them would have meant strictly a day of religious devotion and prayer. (Two years later, Bradford did proclaim “a day of thanksgiveing” to pray in thanks after rains ended a ruinous summer drought that had nearly destroyed their crops.) Instead, the historian says, it more closely resembled a traditional English harvest festival, a secular sort of celebration that dated back to medieval villages’ custom of eating, drinking and playing games after the crops were in.”

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A popular image of the first Thanksgiving is a painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

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 “…for three days we entertained and feasted.”

Edward Winslow was among the group of Pilgrims present at the first Thanksgiving. He describes the scene:

“Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special manner rejoice together after we had gathered the fruit of our labors. They four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the company almost a week.

At which time, amongst other recreations, we exercised our arms, and many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed five deer, which they brought to the plantation and bestowed on our governor, and upon the captain and others. And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty.”

References:   Edward Winslow’s account appears in: Heath, Dwight, A Journal of the Pilgrims at Plymouth: Mourt’s Relation (1963); EyeWitness to America (1997); Morrison, Samuel Eliot, Builders of the Bay Colony (1930).

The First Thanksgiving From the Wampanoag Point of View

So the Pilgrims didn’t invite the Wampanoags to sit down and eat turkey and drink some beer?

“[laughs] Ah, no. Well, let’s put it this way. People did eat together [but not in what is portrayed as “the first Thanksgiving]. It was our homeland and our territory and we walked all through their villages all the time. The differences in how they behaved, how they ate, how they prepared things was a lot for both cultures to work with each other. But in those days, it was sort of like today when you go out on a boat in the open sea and you see another boat and everyone is waving and very friendly—it’s because they’re vulnerable and need to rely on each other if something happens. In those days, the English really needed to rely on us and, yes, they were polite as best they could be, but they regarded us as savages nonetheless.”

Ramona Peters, the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s Tribal Historic Preservation Officer 

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The Origins of Thanksgiving

Sarah Josepha Hale, editor of the popular women’s magazine Godey’s Lady’s Book, a real trendsetter for running a household, was a leading voice in establishing Thanksgiving as an annual event. Beginning in 1827, Hale petitioned 13 presidents, the last of whom was Abraham Lincoln. She pitched her idea to President Lincoln as a way to unite the country in the midst of the Civil War, and, in 1863, he made Thanksgiving a national holiday.”

“Those days were finally consolidated with Lincoln, who proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November in 1863 in large part thanks to an aggressive campaign by magazine editor Sarah Josepha Hale.

The holiday wasn’t made official until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared it as a kind of thank you for the Civil War victories in Vicksburg, Miss., and Gettysburg, Pa.

This is the proclamation which set the precedent for America’s national day of Thanksgiving. 

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The November proclamations continued annually, with governors issuing their own proclamations naming the day the president had set.

“That worked fine until 1939, when Roosevelt decided to change the date,” Kirkpatrick said.

Roosevelt wanted Thanksgiving to come sooner in the hopes of driving up consumer spending during the Great Depression by extending the time between the holiday and Christmas. States disagreed and issued different dates.

As a result of the disagreement, Congress finally enacted legislation in 1941, which Roosevelt signed into law, making Thanksgiving fall on the fourth Thursday of November.”


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It wasn’t just about religious freedom.

“It’s been taught that the Pilgrims came because they were seeking religious freedom, but that’s not entirely true, Mr. Loewen said.

The Pilgrims had religious freedom in Holland, where they first arrived in the early 17th century. Like those who settled Jamestown, Va., in 1607, the Pilgrims came to North America to make money, Mr. Loewen said.

“They were also coming here in order to establish a religious theocracy, which they did,” he said. “That’s not exactly the same as coming here for religious freedom. It’s kind of coming here against religious freedom.”

Also, the Pilgrims never called themselves Pilgrims. They were separatists, Mr. Loewen said. The term Pilgrims didn’t surface until around 1880.”

 

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 What Was On the Menu at The First Thanksgiving

“Throughout her campaign, Hale printed Thanksgiving recipes and menus in Godey’s Lady’s Book. She also published close to a dozen cookbooks. “She is really planting this idea in the heads of lots of women that this is something they should want to do,” says Wall. “So when there finally is a national day of Thanksgiving, there is a whole body of women who are ready for it, who know what to do because she told them. A lot of the food that we think of—roast turkey with sage dressing, creamed onions, mashed turnips, even some of the mashed potato dishes, which were kind of exotic then—are there.”

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History of The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

“Macy’s has been at its current flagship location, at Broadway and 34th Street, since 1902. Continuing expansion made the location what Macy’s called the “world’s largest store,” an entire city block with more than 1 million square feet of retail space.
In celebration, employees organized a Christmas parade in 1924 featuring “floats, bands, animals from the zoo and 10,000 onlookers,” according to a Macy’s history page. It also started way up at 145th Street. The parade concluded with Santa Claus and the unveiling of the store’s Christmas windows. Three years later, the Christmas Parade was renamed the Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Macy’s didn’t invent the practice. Philadelphia has the oldest Thanksgiving Day parade: Its Gimbels Thanksgiving Day Parade, now the 6ABC – Dunkin’ Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade, debuted in 1920.”
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Thanksgiving Affords Rare Opportunity to Eat Large Quantities of Food and Watch Football

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WASHINGTON—Noting that the nation’s long wait is now at an end, sources confirmed Thursday that the Thanksgiving holiday will grant millions of Americans the rare chance to eat incredibly large amounts of food while watching football games. “This kind of day doesn’t come around too often, so I’m excited to finally be able to sit back with family and friends over some delicious food and watch football for the entire afternoon,” said 34-year-old Arnold Dawson of Henrico, VA, echoing a sentiment held by Americans across the country who have come to cherish the lone day of the year when they can simply gorge themselves on enormous meals in front of a television showing nine hours of uninterrupted NFL coverage. “I mean, when else can you curl up in your living room with second or third helpings of food and watch a 12:30 p.m. game, a 4:30 p.m. game, and then an 8:30 p.m. game? It makes me wish Thanksgiving was every week.” Reports also confirmed that, by the end of the evening, the populace will already be excitedly thinking ahead to New Year’s Day, which will afford them an equally rare opportunity to shovel food into their mouths, watch a half-dozen college football games, and eventually pass out on the couch.

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John McCain Hits Another Home Run

“But the contrast between the hopeful atmosphere of 1991 and the current circumstances of our world is a stark one. We have gone from an interval when the global success of democracy seemed assured to a time in which the seductions of authoritarian rule find favor with many; when self-interested leadership excuses naked aggression with weak rationalizations; when ethnic grievances haunt the old and religious fanaticism fires the minds of the misguided young.

“How did we end up here? Why do many Americans ignore our moral and historical knowledge and seek escape from the world we’ve led so successfully?

“There are many wise answers to those questions. My own is: we are asleep to the necessity of our leadership, and to the opportunities and real dangers of this world. We are asleep in our echo chambers, where our views are always affirmed and information that contradicts them is always fake. We are asleep in our polarized politics, which exaggerates our differences, looks for scapegoats instead of answers, and insists we get all our way all the time from a system of government based on compromise, principled cooperation and restraint.

“All the while the associations, rules, values and aspirations that comprise the international order we have superintended for three-quarters of a century are under gathering attack from regimes that desire a world less just and less free and more corrupt. And they are under attack from forces within liberal democracies themselves, parties that preach resentful nationalism rather than enlightened self-interest, nativism rather than equal justice.

“It’s time to wake up.

I believe in Americans. We’re capable of better. I’ve seen it. We’re hopeful, compassionate people. And we still have leaders who will uphold the values that made America great, and a beacon to the oppressed.

“But I don’t take that for granted. We have to fight. We have to fight against propaganda and crackpot conspiracy theories. We have to fight isolationism, protectionism, and nativism. We have to defeat those who would worsen our divisions. We have to remind our sons and daughters that we became the most powerful nation on earth by tearing down walls, not building them.

“Even in the worst of times – and they come for most of us – you’ll know that to serve this country is to serve its ideals – the ideals that consider every child on earth as made in the image of God and endowed with dignity and the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It is a noble cause. It is your cause, and it’s worth living and dying for.”

John McCain’s Naval Academy Speech

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IT IS TIME TO PAY ATTENTION TO THE REPUBLICAN REVOLT AGAINST TRUMP

Liberals have good reasons to dislike Donald Trump;  conservatives have more.  Opposing this president is not about being a conservative or a liberal;  it is about being a good citizen.  Four men that have done far more to serve our country than Donald Trump agree:  Donald Trump is doing real damage to our country and it is time for ALL Americans to stand up to this danger.

I.  Senator Jeff Flake’s Speech Today Should Be Required Reading or Viewing for EVERY AMERICAN.  

Jeff Flake Retiring Due to Trump

“It must also be said that I rise today with no small measure of regret. Regret because of the state of our disunion, regret because of the disrepair and destructiveness of our politics. Regret because of the indecency of our discourse. Regret because of the coarseness of our leadership.

Regret for the compromise of our moral authority, and by our, I mean all of our complicity in this alarming and dangerous state of affairs. It is time for our complicity and our accommodation of the unacceptable to end. “

And when such behavior emanates from the top of our government, it is something else. It is dangerous to a democracy. Such behavior does not project strength because our strength comes from our values. It instead projects a corruption of the spirit and weakness. It is often said that children are watching. Well, they are. And what are we going to do about that? When the next generation asks us, why didn’t you do something? Why didn’t you speak up? What are we going to say?”

“Mr. President, I rise today to say: enough. We must dedicate ourselves to making sure that the anomalous never becomes the normal. With respect and humility, I must say that we have fooled ourselves for long enough that a pivot to governing is right around the corner, a return to civility and stability right behind it. We know better than that. By now, we all know better than that.

The Full Text of Senator Jeff Flake’s Speech

II.  Senator Bob Corker’s Renounces His Support For Donald Trump

Senator Bob Corker’s Feud with Donald Trump

Senator Bob Corker on Trump’s Lack of Integrity

RAJU: Is the President of the United States a liar?

CORKER: The president has great difficulty with the truth. On many issues.

RAJU: Do you regret supporting him in the election?

CORKER: Uh, let’s just put it this way: I would not do that again.

RAJU: You wouldn’t support him again.

CORKER: No way. No way. I think that he’s proven himself unable to rise to the occasion, I think many of us, me included, have tried to… I’ve intervened, I’ve had a private dinner, I’ve been with him on multiple occasions to try to create some kind of aspirational… approach if you will, to the way that he conducts himself. But I don’t think that that’s possible and he’s obviously not going to rise to the occasion as President.

RAJU: Do you think he’s a role model to children in the United States?

CORKER: No.

RAJU: You don’t.

CORKER: No. Absolutely not. 

“You would think he would try to focus on things where there wasn’t a witness, but the whole world is a witness to these untruths,” Corker said.

 

 

Senator Corker’s August Statement on Donald Trump

III.  Senator John McCain on Donald Trump

Let’s Get Real: If you live in a world in which John McCain is NOT a war hero and Donald Trump respects war heroes, you do not live in the real world. Donald Trump lives in that world.

John McCain’s Speech Criticizing Donald Trump’s Approach to Foreign Policy

“To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain ‘the last best hope of earth’ for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.

“We live in a land made of ideals, not blood and soil.  We are the custodians of those ideals at home, and their champion abroad. We have done great good in the world. That leadership has had its costs, but we have become incomparably powerful and wealthy as we did. We have a moral obligation to continue in our just cause, and we would bring more than shame on ourselves if we don’t. We will not thrive in a world where our leadership and ideals are absent. We wouldn’t deserve to.”

The Full Text of John McCain’s Speech

IV.  George W. Bush’s Criticism of Donald Trump and The Damage That He is Doing to Our Country

“America is not immune from these trends. In recent decades, public confidence in our institutions has declined. Our governing class has often been paralyzed in the face of obvious and pressing needs. The American dream of upward mobility seems out of reach for some who feel left behind in a changing economy. Discontent deepened and sharpened partisan conflicts. Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.

We have seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty. At times, it can seem like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together. Argument turns too easily into animosity. Disagreement escalates into dehumanization. Too often, we judge other groups by their worst examples while judging ourselves by our best intentions – forgetting the image of God we should see in each other.”

“We’ve seen nationalism distorted into nativism – forgotten the dynamism that immigration has always brought to America. We see a fading confidence in the value of free markets and international trade – forgetting that conflict, instability, and poverty follow in the wake of protectionism.”

Excerpt From Former President George W. Bush’s Speech

The Full Video of President George W. Bush’s Speech

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V.  Conclusions

These men are not liberals.  They have been in the ring.  They have fought the good fight.  They are not seeking partisan advantage.  They are not playing politics.  They are simply telling the truth for no other reason than they believe that they owe it to their country to do so.  If you can read or hear these words and are still not deeply troubled by Donald Trump and his behavior, you might be right about one thing:  Donald Trump is not the problem;  you are.

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Guess Who’s Back?

Intro

This is the calm before the storm right here.

Wait, how was I gonna start this off? I forgot. …

Oh yeah.

Verse

That’s an awfully hot coffee pot,

Should I drop it on Donald Trump? Prob’ly not,

But that’s all I got ’til I come up with a solid plot.

Got a plan and now I gotta hatch it,

Like a damn Apache with a tomahawk,

I’m a walk inside a mosque on Ramadan,

And say a prayer that every time Melania talks,

She gets a mou— ah, I’m a stop.

But we better give Obama props,

‘Cause what we got in office now’s a kamikaze,

That’ll prob’ly cause a nuclear holocaust,

And while the drama pops,

And he waits for s— to quiet down, he’ll just gas his plane up

And fly around ’til the bombing stops.

Intensities heightened, tensions are risin’,

Trump, when it comes to givin’ a s—, you’re stingy as I am,

Except when it comes to having the balls to go against me, you hide ’em,

‘Cause you don’t got the f—ing nuts, like an empty asylum,

Racism’s the only thing he’s fantastic for,

‘Cause that’s how he gets his f—ing rocks off and he’s orange,

Yeah, sick tan,

That’s why he wants us to disband,

‘Cause he can not withstand,

The fact we’re not afraid of Trump,

F— walkin’ on egg shells, I came to stomp,

That’s why he keeps screamin’, “Drain the swamp!”,

‘Cause he’s in quicksand.

It’s like we take a step forwards, then backwards,

But this is his form of distraction,

Plus, he gets an enormous reaction,

When he attacks the NFL, so we focus on that,

Instead of talking Puerto Rico or gun reform for Nevada,

All these horrible tragedies and he’s bored and would rather,

Cause a Twitter storm with the Packers.

Then says he wants to lower our taxes,

Then who’s gonna pay for his extravagant trips,

Back and forth with his fam to his golf resorts and his mansions?

Same s— that he tormented Hillary for and he slandered,

Then does it more,

From his endorsement of Bannon,

Support for the Klansmen,

Tiki torches in hand for the soldier that’s black,

And comes home from Iraq,

And is still told to go back to Africa,

Fork and a dagger in this racist 94-year-old grandpa,

Who keeps ignoring our past historical, deplorable factors,

Now if you’re a black athlete, you’re a spoiled little brat for,

Trying to use your platform or your stature,

To try to give those a voice who don’t have one,

He says, “You’re spittin’ in the face of vets who fought for us you bastards,”

Unless you’re a POW who’s tortured and battered,

‘Cause to him, you’re zeros,

‘Cause he don’t like his war heroes captured.

That’s not disrespecting the military.

F— that! This is for Colin, ball up a fist,

And keep that s— balled like Donald the b—-,

“He’s gonna get rid of all immigrants!”

“He’s gonna build that thing up taller than this!”

Well, if he does build it, I hope it’s rock solid with bricks,

‘Cause like him in politics, I’m using all of his tricks,

‘Cause I’m throwin’ that piece of s— against the wall ’til it sticks,

And any fan of mine who’s a supporter of his,

I’m drawing in the sand a line, you’re either for or against,

And if you can’t decide who you like more and you’re split,

On who you should stand beside, I’ll do it for you with this: F— you.

End

The rest of America stand up,

We love our military, and we love our country,

But we f—ing hate Trump.

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When The Biggest Threat To National Security Is The President

White House officials are trying to contain the real threat that Donald Trump poses to our nation’s security.

Text of GOP Senator Bob Corker’s Interview with the New York Times

          CORKER: I know for a fact that every single day at the White House it’s a  situation of trying to contain him.

          MARTIN: Yeah.

          CORKER: Look, you know that. It’s not like —

          MARTIN: Yes, you’re right.

          CORKER: I mean, you’ve talked to enough people to know that that’s just a fact.  So, thankfully we’ve got some very good people there. At least today,  we’ve got some very good people there and they have been able to push back against his worst instincts.

          MARTIN: Yeah.

          CORKER: But yes, I mean, you know, yes. He concerns me. I mean he would     have to concern anyone who cares about our nation. But a lot people that —   Let me put it this way, I think that — So I’ll just stop there. Sure, I  mean, do I  want him to be successful? Absolutely.

https://static01.nyt.com/video/players/offsite/index.html?videoId=100000005486638

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The Pledge of Allegiance in Trumpland

Given the national controversy over the #Takeaknee movement and “the Donald’s” reaction to it, this seems like a good time to remind all Americans what the Pledge of Allegiance might look like in an idealized version of Trumpland.

CSA: Confederate States of America

CSA: Confederate States of America

 

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History Is Not There To Be Liked: On Historical Memory, Real and Fake – Foreign Policy Research Institute

NOTE: This is a shared article from the Foreign Policy Research Institute. I am not the author.

 

My grandmother had an excellent memory. We would sit at her kitchen table in Montreal, in the home my mother grew up in, and she would describe her childhood in Poland 70 years earlier. She lived in Gorzków, 50 miles from the Ukraine border, and her father owned a lumberyard in Krasnobród. He traveled there each week by horse and buggy, passing the goyische cemetery on his way. Non-Jews lived on the outskirts of Gorzków; Jewish families lived around the main square. It was a bustling place, my grandmother recalled. “It was a city!” she said.

Source: History Is Not There To Be Liked: On Historical Memory, Real and Fake – Foreign Policy Research Institute