“Dinnertime this Thanksgiving is a good time to start thinking and talking about how much we value and understand our country,” I wrote.
Before I got the email, I had decided to not to write a Thanksgiving column this year. But now, here it is.
Another year has gone by and like a lot of Americans, I’m feeling a little bit more angry, not grateful, about the way this country is governed (or not governed) and a growing loss of spirit and hope about the future of this nation.
At Thanksgiving Dinner in 2014, there will be many of us sitting around our holiday spreads, particularly older Americans who lived better times, thinking not about how grateful we are to be citizens of this country (which became a bit easier this week for some of those who snuck in), but how fucked up this country, its values, its morals, and its governments have become in the last few years.
Bet some of us will be thinking about that when Aunt Betsy sets down the jiggling Jello mold on the Thanksgiving table this year. Wow, the mob on the internet made Bill Cosby is as bad a guy as Mike Tyson.
Then there was the decision of the grand jury to exonerate the police officer in the shooting death of street thug Michael Brown, and the subsequent looting and rioting in Ferguson over that decision that evoked images of the burning ghettos in American cities in the late 1960s.
It’s just not what happened in Ferguson that leads to build my Thanksgiving cynicism, but the perverted perspective in the way events there were reported that tolerated, even justified, the mob destruction of that town.
Also, there was the resignation of Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense, allegedly falling on his sword for Obama’s loss of Iraq to ISIS. Just another example of the bad spin and distraction tactics used during his administration to answer for the failure of a policy of abandonment in Iraq and his manifestation of American weakness arising from the bloody chaos characterized as an Arab “Spring” in other Middle Eastern countries.
So this year, encumbered with a constant bombardment of failure of our American character and basic tenets of our life in terms of peace and security both here and abroad, I’m not feeling like writing about how grateful I am to be an American celebrating Thanksgiving.
But I do want to thank Peter for publishing my Thanksgiving angst, and celebrate both my right to write my ungrateful thoughts and his right to allow me to do so.