The annual Thanksgiving Day has arrived at a time when, once again, our essential American character is being tested. People continue to lose their jobs, their homes, their health insurance by the millions still. The cloud that has been darkening the horizon of plenty lingers stubbornly over the economic landscape and hope, already dimmed in recent years, remains only a flicker for very many people.
It is indeed hard to give thanks at such times because there seems so little for so many to be thankful for.
But over everything else is this enduring truth: We are a nation with the resilience to bounce back from every setback we have had to face, with an indomitable spirit that enables us to confront and overcome every challenge put before us.
And that is one of the most important facts that we should keep in mind as we mark the Thanksgiving holiday. It is not just for us to be thankful for what we have but also for us to be thankful that we live in a country where the opportunity to have is ever present.
That is not the same for hundreds of millions of human beings around the globe. For them, poverty, hunger, disease, religious and political persecution are not just a passing phase but a way of life. We don’t want to be thankful that we are better off in that regard. But it is good, from time to time, to acknowledge that even in our time of distress, there is reason to be thankful.
But material well-being is only part of why people should be thankful. The vast majority of human beings who face challenges just to get the basics of life still rejoice in the presence of family and friends, in the cultural ethos that give meaning to their existence. Like them, we, too, have those reasons to give thanks.
And then there are still more reasons. One of them is the support which we give to one another, in small and big ways, that help us along the way. The South Florida Times would not be the institution that it is, expanding as it seeks to fulfill its role of elevating the dialogue, without the support of many people – including our readers and our advertisers and those who otherwise wish us well. We are cognizant of the fact that we owe them our thanks every day and especially on Thanksgiving Day. We don’t have a turkey to give each of you but we can say to each of you: Thank you.