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November 24, 2005


I am neither American nor religious, but maybe this is the proper moment to express my gratitude for the fact that some Americans really are serious about their ideals. To God, a.k.a. the Flying Spaghetti Monster: please can we have a few more like hilzoy (meaning no disrespect to others who are pure in heart). To all the ObWi team, irrespective of ideology, Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for the blog.

Also, let's give thanks for the concept of "stuffing."

And Netflix.

also, bicarbonate.

and yukon gold.

I wish to second Kevins comment. Hilzoy you appear to be a truly gracious and intelligent women. I am not American either but an Aussie. To all in the US Happy Thanksgiving

Since Hilzoy drew our attention to the third paragraph, with Washington's reference to "our national transgressions", it is worth remembering Lincoln's gloss and commentary on it:

"If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.""

Days of national Thanksgiving are very good, and I am grateful to Lincoln for (among other things) having instituted an annual one.

But gratitude is only one of several attitudes that it is supremely healthy for East African Plains Apes to experience, manifest, and reflect upon at intervals. A day of national penitence might not be bad. A day dedicated to hope for the future would come in well about now.

Why did George Washington hate America?

In re gratitude: hilzoy, I just reservedly called you the guiding light of the online left over at Balloon Juice, in case you want to argue the point.

Yikes, I hope not. But thanks, everyone.

Having just finished Susan Jacoby's FREETHINKERS, I'm struck by the fact that Washington thanks God not for creating America but for granting mortal men the opportunity to do it.

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