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Thanksgiving Week

By Remy Benoit

    Our lives seem progressively more hurried.

    We have less vacation time than most other countries.

    We are at war on more than one front and the casuality rates keep rising.

    Our paychecks aren't keeping up with costs.

    Thousands of jobs have disappeared.

    TV, magazines, Internet news sources give us  tips for "Turkey Day" diminishing its meaning.

    So, what do we have for which to be thankful?

    Perhaps we should just stop and look around.

    If you are here reading this, you had the gift of waking to another day and its possibilities. If you really think about that, just being alive is a wonder; listen to a bird song; or listen to the music of a city at work.

    You can take a moment and watch the light play through the trees, or on the walls of skyscrapers.

    You have the gift of speech, of thought, with which to express yourself and the inherent right to do that.

    You have the right to relocate, travel, or stay in place.

    You have the right to marry, or not.

    You have the right to have one children, six children, or none.

    You have the right to read freely and widely.

    You have the right to vote.

    You have the right to an education.

    You have the right to seek information from a free press.

    You have the right to choose.

    You have the responsibility to choose well.

    You have the responsibility to protect your rights.

    You have the responsibility for the care of those who actively defend them.

    Yes, with rights come responsibilities.

    And for that too we must give thanks. What is earned, what is protected, is cherished, even if it is an inherent right.

    That too is something for which to be thankful - the  very idea of inherent rights. We have come a long way; we have a long way to  go. We can give thanks for the responsibility of choosing a planet and people supportive path.

    Thanksgiving is not just about the turkey.

    Thanksgiving is about appreciation and responsibility.



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This item is part of historian, author, editor, and educator Remy Benoit's ongoing weblog for Veterans, writers, students, and others who believe in learning from and making history; including thousands of articles and posts and the free writing seminar, Using History for Healing and Writing.

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