Solely In Black and White: Thankgiving

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thankgiving



Turkey
Gobble Gobble. Don't worry this turkey is safe. It's a turkey in the Whipsnade Zoo, London.
I don't think they celebrate Thanksgiving like we do... :-P

First off I should apologize for my lack of posts as of late. In case you haven’t heard, things have been rather busy. ;-) Anyways…

I have always been amused by Thanksgiving. While I personally, or more specifically my family and my-in-laws, do not celebrate Turkey day, I have partaken in the modern Jewish adaptation of Shabbos Thanksgiving. I don’t really understand the underlying premise of it either. Sorry, let me rephrase that. I find it comical that Thanksgiving is celebrated in the form of a holiday rather than any specific act of giving thanks.

To preempt the most obvious of questions, no, I am not a one of those anti-thanksgiving Jewish fanatics. Like most issues or topics, I generally follow the doctrine of live and let live. As for the Thanksgiving being a problem of chukas hagoyim, all I can say is “seriously?” Even if you can conjure up a reason that it would be a religious holiday, you still have to ascribe to the notion that the pilgrims fled England because of religious persecution, which would imply it’s still not a religious holiday. If not, that would be some heavy irony. Regardless, the issues I do wonder about with regards to “Thanksgiving” celebrations are ancillary ideals that people shoehorn into the day, such as freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and patriotism. (Thanks Lincoln! By the way, what happened to Evacuation Day?) Perhaps, there may be a reason to be patriotic, but in that case why don’t we celebrate Memorial Day and Veteran’s day with the same gusto? Alternatively, if those were intended themes of Thanksgiving, then by default the way to celebrate Thanksgiving would not be to feast but rather to act as a model citizen.
 
Don’t get me wrong, I obviously and wholeheartedly support the concept of thanksgiving. Furthermore, I am all for the creation of one day of thanksgiving to encapsulate and reflect on the things in our lives which we are (or should be) thankful for. We live in a world that is not lacking in suffering or pain. As many recent events have proven, you only appreciate something either when it’s gone or when it’s in jeopardy. So regardless of how you spend your thanksgiving (or how you don’t) appreciate everything you have even those minute little things you take for granted every single day…  I know I do.

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