My reflections on the national holiday denominated Thanksgiving in the United States.
The concept seems beautiful. A day on which to give thanks without asking for anything, just a general sense of gratitude directed at both our fellow men and women, and to a sense of the divine. Unfortunately, it was a hypocritical concept since its inception set in stolen indigenous lands denominated New England by an intolerant and racist religious sect totally at odds with the humanitarian philosophy of the incarnate man, whom they judged divine and claimed to follow. Of course, they were very much a reflection of the Romanized Jew, Saul of Tarsus, who changed his name to Paul, and who swiped the emergent innovative Hebrew religious variant right from under the noses of its progeny.
As a “Pauline” rather than “Nazarene” sect, the conduct of the Pilgrims was utterly predictable. Orthodox hypocrisy followed by virtual genocide. Still, the thought is beatific and noble even if its implementation by the Pilgrims and Puritans in general fell far from the mark. But that does not, in any sense, mean we need to do the same. Or, more accurately, to keep doing the same. It would be awesome if on this day of thanksgiving we dedicated ourselves, not just to watching football games and stuffing ourselves, but to replacing polarization with empathy and to doing unto others as we would have them do to us; and to insisting on a peaceful world were swords are beaten into plowshares and equity and justice reign and truth is relevant; and if we did so, not tomorrow but today.
I wonder if resolutions need, for some reason, to be limited to the New Year.
© Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Manizales, 2022; all rights reserved. Please feel free to share with appropriate attribution.
Guillermo (“Bill”) Calvo Mahé (a sometime poet) is a writer, political commentator and academic currently residing in the Republic of Colombia (although he has primarily lived in the United States of America of which he is also a citizen). Until 2017 he chaired the political science, government and international relations programs at the Universidad Autónoma de Manizales. He has academic degrees in political science (the Citadel), law (St. John’s University), international legal studies (New York University) and translation and linguistic studies (the University of Florida’s Center for Latin American Studies). He can be contacted at email@example.com and much of his writing is available through his blog at https://guillermocalvo.com/.