Happy Thanksgiving to All!
Whatever our personal beliefs, no one is an island‒we all depend on the kindness, generosity, hard work, and sacrifices of our fellow human beings. If a neighbor foolishly fails to thoroughly read the directions on their new turkey fryer and sets fire to their house, but the fire is extinguished before it burns down their house (and possibly spreads to yours), and you feel a need to thank (insert preferred higher power), go ahead‒after all, reciting the right words in the right order demands very little us in the way of thought, reflection, or labor.
However, (you just knew this was coming) a far more sincere, tangible, and morally praiseworthy way of expressing one's heartfelt gratitude would be to do something for the firefighters and other first responders that gave up their holiday to protect the lives, safety, and property of their fellow human beings. Bring a meal to the station house, or ask if there are any that are without families nearby that would be alone and invite them to your house for the following holiday. If you have a loved one in a hospital or nursing home during the holidays, don't just say some words to them, actually do something for them. Pick up the phone and make some calls, get some names of those caring for your loved one during the holidays instead of spending time with their loved ones. Bake them some cookies, send them a fruit basket, or whatever, but do something.
Many ranchers here in South Dakota are still reeling from the effects of a devastating blizzard in early October and appeals for help in aiding ranchers that have, in some cases, lost well over half of their herds, has been phenomenal. Most (non-vegan) folks will be sitting down to turkey dinners rather than beef today, so remember those that are, this Thanksgiving Day, working to bring to fruition next year's harvest, often laboring for long hours in crappy weather, even on national and religious holidays.
So on this day of Thanksgiving, remembering that actions speak louder then words, do not neglect to say “Thank You” for those that labor, if even indirectly, on our behalf...because we can all agree that they do exist.
Just for the record, I hate the word “Turkey Day” because, while I will be having some later this afternoon, I much prefer a holiday ham.