America's Thanksgiving – the historical foundation

Much like the famous editorial, Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, it has become a tradition this time of year to see some newspapers reprint President George Washington’s Thanksgiving Day proclamation, it seemed appropriate to repeat here today:

George Washington’s 1789 Thanksgiving Proclamation

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me “to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enable to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted’ for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have show kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand, at the city of New York, the 3d day of October, A.D. 1789.

I can’t hold a candle to the prose of our nation’s first president, but I can say that I’m thankful for the health of my family, that I still have employment in debt ravaged California, for the WUWT community of people that help with content and moderations, and visit here every day, and for living in an age where I can make friends (and enemies) instantly across the globe with the click of a mouse. – Anthony

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96 thoughts on “America's Thanksgiving – the historical foundation

  1. And thank you, Anthony, for presenting a forum at which we can share ideas and information.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.
    Ditto to the other visitors here at WUWT.

  2. And here we have been lectured all these years by the American media that Thanksgiving had nothing to do with god and was a day of atonement for Americans bad behavior or something like that.

  3. A little ‘thank you’ before dinner.
    We give thanks:
    For food in a world where many walk in hunger;
    For courage in a world where many walk in fear;
    For fellowship in a world where many walk alone;
    For earthly angels that share their lives helping others;
    For tolerance and forgiveness from those we wrong;
    And for the opportunity to make tomorrow better than today.

  4. “Rational Debate” left this in Tips and Notes:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    http://news.discovery.com/earth/thanksgiving-climate-change.html
    Could Climate Change Ruin Thanksgiving Dinner?
    Discovery Channel, by Jennifer Viegas Original Article
    (excerpts below)
    Climate change could one day affect the cost and quality of dishes traditionally served for Thanksgiving Day dinner, suggests a recent paper in the journal Food Research International. Pasty, dry turkey meat along with expensive fruits, vegetables and potatoes could be on the horizon if more variable extremes in regional weather patterns continue as a likely result of climate change, indicates author Neville Gregory. The usual star of the Thanksgiving Day feast, roast turkey, could suffer in quality as a result. (read the rest online)
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Nothing is sacred when it comes to climate change except the idea itself. – Anthony

  5. Hee Haw style:
    “What’s for dinner?”
    Turkey basted with lots of butter
    With corn bread stuffing like no other
    Green beans and carrots sauteed just right
    And mashed potatoes done up light
    There’s gravy over all that’s warm and cozy
    And hot buttery rolls to tickle your nosy
    But not to worry weighing like a feather
    ’cause we end with baked pumpkin pie
    to combat this damnable weather.
    “Yum yum!”

  6. Could Climate Change Ruin Thanksgiving Dinner?
    Discovery Channel, by Jennifer Viegas Original Article
    (excerpts below)
    Climate change could one day affect the cost and quality of dishes traditionally served for Thanksgiving Day dinner, suggests a recent paper in the journal Food Research International.
    ——————————————————————————
    Well that takes the cake for crassness. It says it all you need to know about their sensitivity and motives.
    I admire the Americans – especially their profound appreciation of the reasons for their origins and the simple Thanksgiving the acknowledge for it.
    To all Americans – Enjoy you day. You deserve it – Turkey and all!
    Douglas

  7. Re: that discovery blog post:
    Wow… monomania at it’s finest. I wonder if poor Jennifer cries herself to sleep at night over the damage we humans have done to our wonderful planet.
    Re: Thanksgiving
    Happy Thanksgiving to all regular WUWT readers, and especially to Anthony. It seems to me your year may have, like mine, put the concept of “thanks” back into perspective. And we do, indeed, have so much to be thankful for.
    And even to the AGW believers… Happy Thanksgiving. Now remember, if you drove or flew this season, you have to atone for your emissions. If you ate a huge dinner, your relatives might be making faces at your emissions. I know I am.

  8. Thanks, I wasn’t aware of that. I do know that Jefferson vetoed a Thanksgiving holiday bill because he didn’t feel the federal government had any business declaring a national day of prayer, so there wasn’t any permanent official holiday until Lincoln declared it in 1863 after Gettysburg.

  9. Real turkeys are very hardy and can withstand all kinds of bad weather, cold or hot. At issue is what people are used to. People are used to big breasted, genetically engineered Toms. Shoot a real turkey and roast that up. It can be just as tasty if done the old fashioned way. Just watch out for those little shotgun bullets. You can crack a molar on those.

  10. “Reserve your Thanksgiving Day Turkey” says the sign in Waitrose Marylebone High Street London.
    Anthony and American posters enjoy the day and of course give thanks.

  11. Happy Thanksgiving to all of the WUWT crowd – Anthony, the mods & contributors, and all the great commentators, may you have a safe holiday full of family, fun, and good food.

  12. PUMPKIN CRUMBLE
    1 can (29 oz) solid pack pumpkin
    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
    3 eggs, beaten
    1 tablespoon vanilla
    1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1 teaspoon ground allspice
    1 teaspoon nutmeg
    1 box (2-layer size) yellow cake mix
    1/2 cup butter or margarine
    3/4-1 cup chopped pecans
    Beat eggs in bowl with an electric mixer. Combine with pumpkin, milk, sugars, vanilla, and spices, mixing well.
    Pour into a 13×9 inch baking pan. Sprinkle the dry cake mix on top and pat down.
    Melt the butter and drizzle over the top. Sprinkle with the chopped pecans.
    Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes or until browned and set. Let cool.
    Makes about 24 servings. Very rich.

  13. Happy Thanksgiving to all. We are truly blessed as a nation. Let us remember the Founding Fathers who help create this great country. Let us also give thanks to those who are trying so hard to preserve it. Keep up the great work everyone!

  14. Yum! Must make that pumpkin crumble!
    Re-grind your spices. I don’t put in a spice till I give it a fresh go-around in my mortar and pestle. Those pre-ground spices you get at the grocery store are given a fresh taste using this step. And to clean out your marble mortar and pestle, throw a scant teaspoon of either sugar or salt into the bowl and grind it up then throw it out or just throw it into the recipe you are making. Don’t forget to give powdered baking cocoa a re-grind as well. Really brings out the chocolate taste.
    Add a bit of Southern Comfort to your pie. For one pie, pour out about 1/4 cup of the evaporated milk and replace with bottled Southern Eggnog (it has lots of “good stuff” in it). You can also use more eggnog and less of the evaporated milk but you have to reduce the sugar or else your pie will be too sweet. I’ve not tried the “extra enhanced” version so I can’t tell you the exchange amount.

  15. Gobble, gobble.
    Burp, burp.
    Emit, emit.
    Enjoy the warmth, may it spread across the globe.
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  16. Nice….
    editorial, Yes Virgina, there is a Santa Claus, it has
    It wasn’t the kind of content I was expecting from your link 😉

  17. John David Galt says: “Thanks, I wasn’t aware of that. I do know that Jefferson vetoed a Thanksgiving holiday bill because he didn’t feel the federal government had any business declaring a national day of prayer, so there wasn’t any permanent official holiday until Lincoln declared it in 1863 after Gettysburg.”
    It was Congress in 1941 that established a permanent Thanksgiving holiday. Lincoln only called for a day of thanksgiving for 1863:
    “…I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father”

  18. Pamela Gray says: “Real turkeys are very hardy and can withstand all kinds of bad weather, cold or hot…”
    My mother, who was raised on a farm, told me several times that turkeys had a high mortality rate and were difficult to raise. Her mother was one of the few who went to the trouble of raising them. This was in the days before genetic engineering, circa 1900-1920, so presumably they were ‘real’ turkeys. Maybe those genetic modifications were necessary for more than one reason.

  19. Happy Thanksgiving to all even those who aren’t celebrating, Wife and I are alone this
    year so we are having Home made grass fed beef, chili, with home made corn bread, an
    old family recipe pumpkin pie. (though that pumpkin crumble is gonna get a tryout, soon.)
    Warm here, all the way up to 22F.
    Thanks for that post ,Anthony…

  20. Perhaps I’d better be more explicit: Virginia or vagina, but not Vergina.
    1st line of the article.
    I only came out of hospital this afternoon after a heart op. I need to keep my blood pressure down.
    [Thanx, fixed. You can relax now. ~dbs]

  21. ‘and the increase of science among them and us’
    Hear, hear to that, especially here, and thanks to Anthony and his helpers. Happy Thanksgiving to you all.

  22. Anthony:
    I am not an American so I hope you and all your WUWT team will accept my sincere good wishes for your enjoyment of your Holiday Celebrations.
    And I add that I was moved to tears by your having written:
    “I can say that I’m thankful for the health of my family”.
    Please accept my deepest hope for continued health of all your family especially your good lady.
    Richard

  23. I’m very thankful for Anthony and this site, and all the moderators. Also for Steve McIntyre and Ross McKittrick, “Bishop Hill,” Lord Christopher Monckton, and the many other skeptics around the world. And also for Drs. Pielke Sr. & Jr., Judith Curry, and Lucia. And most of all for whoever it was that anonymously pulled the giblets out of the University of East Anglia turkey and prepared it for stuffing and roasting. White meat or dark, people?

  24. Minnesocold this morning: 6 F just before sunrise (predicted: 16 F).
    Max today (now predicted) 13 to 14 F. 10 MPH wind = -10 F wind chill.
    Translation: For MN this year, THANKSGIVING MEANS THANKS FOR THE WINTER! (We love it.)
    Al Gore sighted flying over in his “carbon stomp” Gulf Stream. This does NOT bode well.
    -20 F throughout most of Alaska by MID WEEK next week (I.e., Nov 30th, just before December!)
    Max’s prediction for MN:
    A couple more suprising “plains snowstorms” (large Lows held in place by lack of Jet Stream change…due to low “F1” ionization layer activity..) before Xmas (that’s CHI-mass for the un-informed, figure out what the X (chi) stands for!!!!)
    Then, pronounced winter stationary “highs”, about Dec. 20 to 30, bringing -15, -20,
    -25 F before usual January cold snap.
    So next – MERRY X-MASS EVERYONE ! And to ALL A GOOD NIGHT! HO HO HO!

  25. I had friends that raised the new genetically modified turkeys. Every time it threatened rain they would rush out to put the turkeys into their poultry shed. When I asked why, they said that if left out in the rain, the turkeys would look up at the raindrops. The rain would enter their airways and the turkeys would drown.
    While I never saw a drowned turkey. I frequently saw a family of six frantically herding turkeys into their shed.
    Presumably the wild ones are brighter.

  26. Happy Thanksgiving to Anthony, his family, and the WUWT community. For all with children and all who teach, while few are a George Washington, we can try to raise some. Our country and the world would be greatly benefited!
    (No global warming in Boulder at the moment, no snow either).

  27. Anthony, Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. I do hope this can be an occasion for thanks, especially given your difficult personal circumstances of the last several months.
    Thanks also to everyone who contributes and comments here. These are the kinds of “modern” social forums — not unlike the town square or town hall — that we so much need: the opportunity to share information and opinions in ways that are civil and that, hopefully, allow political outcomes that are far more modest and circumspect than would otherwise be possible.
    Of course, it’s also kinda fun to watch science in the making — a new kind of science that is not insular and isolated and more concerned about certification, formal process, and position than about thoughtfully conducted and transparent research to shed light on how our world works. For this, I am especially thankful.

  28. Happy thanksgiving to WUWT , though WUWT is virtual, hope Anthony and moderators will take care of the Turkey… 🙂 Giving thanks to God for such a big success.

  29. Happy Thanksgiving Anthony and the A-Team(Anthony’s team).
    Many of us may not agree with each other but there is still the respect of one another, especially in the holiday seasons.
    Happy Thanksgiving ALL!!!

  30. Ah, the season when mostly Global Warming fades.
    Happy Thanksgiving to all.
    (and thanks for George’s wise words to us all)

  31. Happy Thanksgiving to all, American or our extended family in other nations who wish us well. We appreciate the kind thoughts from those who live in other parts of the world, but share our hopes for a better world, and the freedom to enjoy it.
    May you all share good food, good time and good health with your friends, family and associates. The formal Thanksgiving holiday may be an American Tradition but I am sure its sentiments are echoed in other locations as well in some fashion.
    I know I have much to be thankful for, including a new job, and good friends, good health and a roof over my head. I am even thankful for the useful idiots that provide object lessons about how not to behave so others can learn from their mistakes.
    Larry

  32. Jamestown, the Virginia colony – not Plymouth – site of first Western Hemisphere, European, celebration. Google offers many references, but
    http://mises.org/daily/336
    gives us the back-story, briefly:
    ¨Before these free markets were established, the colonists had nothing for which to be thankful. They were in the same situation as Ethiopians are today, and for the same reasons. But after free markets were established, the resulting abundance was so dramatic that the annual Thanksgiving celebrations became common throughout the colonies, … Thus the real reason for Thanksgiving, deleted from the official story, is: Socialism does not work; the one and only source of abundance is free markets, and we thank God we live in a country where we can have them.¨

  33. The original Thanksgiving was, as George Washington said, “to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”
    I would humbly submit that today he would add to this statement the endeavours of those such as Anthony Watts, Stephen McIntyre, Lord Christopher, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley and many, many others, together with the unmentioned, but ever-appreciated efforts of the Moderators in this particular Forum for “an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness”.
    We, in what once Great Britain can say only “morituri te salutant”. Socialism and the total embrace by our new government of CAGW has doomed us.
    Have a GREAT Thanksgiving and say a prayer for us.

  34. Every day………Every day, I make a small attempt to spy something that inspires me to give thanks.
    It’s good for my soul. It’s ESPECIALLY GOOD for an individual who loves TRUTH and suffers ‘hurt’ and ‘sadness’ when I see, oft times… too much of it, in our world of today.
    Yet ~ when I pause and give contemplation over even the smallest item, that at one time would’ve caused me grief…(such as the vast army of Australian ‘sugar ants’ that found my pantry two days ago) and before I find my Windex (which melts them, p.s.) I stood amazed at their determination to find food for themselves ~ I stood kinda awestruck at their ways and tracked the route they took (convoluted, to be sure) in order to access any of our scraps. It was then, oddly, that I took time to really give thanks. Sound funny? It was, but I was amazed at their purpose in life and I began to wonder about ours.
    Are we ‘mere sugar ants’ as the behaviorists/greenies/$oro$’s types claim???
    NO. We’re not. We are thinking, caring, smart, compassionate (at times) adults who can ‘break the track we’re on’ and call out to others of our ilk, I reasoned.
    That’s when ~ I thought of YOU, Anthony. I thought of your perseverance and diligence in getting this site together. How you ‘broke outta the mold’ (even if you’re still in zany California) and were prompted to make this site so many of us enjoy
    and ‘vent’ our musings in.
    I stood VERY THANKFUL in my pantry for individuals such as yourself, who have taken the bold step in ‘getting outta line’ as it were… and ‘alerting others’ that there IS another way. Kinda…”boldly going” rather than merely following the butt that’s in front of us. That takes COURAGE AND STRENGTH, my Friends.
    You Scientist guys an’ gals are my personal HEROES ~ for rather than penning Washington’s address, which was His Part ~ in the inspiration of others ~ YOU have bucked ‘our current system’ in order to show others…to LEAD others…by uncovering falsehoods where someone like me……a scientist wanna-be…..truly couldn’t.
    THAT’S WHAT I’M THANKFUL FOR (for the past 32 hours, in fact, ’cause I celebrated both yesterday AND today due to our time zone stuff) I’m gonna make
    the attempt to be thankful in even little ways ~ each day ~ for men and women of your caliber, because you’ve inspired me. And, I BET there are even more of you ‘out there’ on this globe, who are meant to ‘lead and inspire’, as Geo. Washington and yes ~ Anthony (as a very smart ‘watchman on the wall’) does – many years after Geo.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you all and to those we haven’t even met yet… an internet hug from your sis’ on the glorious South Australian Coast…….who began really enjoying Thanksgiving ‘way back when’ in 1957………..when I was born on that Day. THAT is honoring to me, and that’s all the honor I need…an’ No ‘turkey jokes’, Pilgrims! wry smiles…)
    God bless all of you. In-deed, we can be Thankful for much.
    Cynthia Lauren

  35. I believe there is also an article written in 1950s or 60s that aims to inform non-Americans what Thanksgiving is all about. It is similar in tone to “Yes, Virginia” article and often repeated by a media outlet every so often.
    There is a really charming quaintness about this celebration. This is probably the only day of the year that I wish I were an American, and no, not just because I like turkey. 🙂
    Anyway… Happy Thanksgiving Day to all Americans. You earned it.

  36. Yes, I meant wild turkeys. Any kind of domesticated animal will be difficult to raise. Wild Toms are hardy individuals. We have boatloads of them in Wallowa County.

  37. Thank you for your hard work this past year Anthony and team.
    Actually Thanksgiving has little to do with the alleged god that there is zero evidence for.
    Thanking each other for the work we’ve done in the previous year is a perfectly natural thing to do, celebration can be wonderful, no need to spoil it by giving credit to imaginary friends of the super natural kind. Remember there are those of us who actually like taking credit for our deeds.
    As a scientist I require evidence for the existence of anything and I consider the counter evidence against, and as it happens the counter evidence outweighs any and all faith. It’s just like in the case of AGW, take no one’s word for it, either provide the evidence and falsify all the counter evidence, or enjoy your fantasy. I find Star Wars much more rewarding.
    I’m with Richard Feynman: “I’m trying to find out NOT how Nature could be, but how Nature IS.”
    Thanks for your hard work this past year at uncovering some of the layers of the Earth’s climate onion. There are many more mysteries that can be solved to be solved.
    Thanks and enjoy your meals and connecting with family and friends, hopefully in a good way.

  38. We in the UK send best wishes for Thanksgiving to our WUWT American friends and particularly to Anthony and his family.

  39. Interesting story today about food:
    “World ‘Dangerously Close’ to Food Crisis, U.N. Says”
    ““There is no crisis at this stage, but it could come if we don’t act,” Mr. Abbassian said. “The numbers are getting dangerously close to what we saw in 2008.”

    “In the long term, however, growing demand for food staples like corn and seed oil for use as biofuels will most likely continue to play a central role in tightening world food supplies, the United Nations warned. Roughly 7 percent of global yields of corn and other coarse grains is being used to make ethanol.
    “This is a huge amount that does have an impact on the food markets and on prices,” Hafez Ghanem, assistant director general for the Food and Agriculture Organization, told reporters.
    In the United States in particular, ethanol production is supported by heavy government subsidies, without which it would be largely uneconomical to manufacture.
    “I think it is important for all of us to look into the wisdom of these policies,” Mr. Ghanem said.”
    http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/24/world-dangerously-close-to-food-crisis-u-n-says/?ref=science
    Well, well. Even the U.N. has figured out that turning food into fuel is dumb.

  40. pwl – I’m not sure how you intended to come across. Probably not obnoxious, but you managed it anyway.
    Anthony- all the very best for you and your family. Thanks for a most excellent, informative and enjoyable site.
    From a non American, to all Americans, have a wonderful thanksgiving.

  41. “….with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”
    Would God we get that back.

  42. Pamela Gray says:
    November 25, 2010 at 11:08 am
    Real turkeys are very hardy and can withstand all kinds of bad weather, cold or hot. At issue is what people are used to. People are used to big breasted, genetically engineered Toms. Shoot a real turkey and roast that up. It can be just as tasty if done the old fashioned way. Just watch out for those little shotgun bullets. You can crack a molar on those.
    A well-taken wild turkey may be had with a tightly choked .410 gage, and the only damage will be to the bird’s head, causing instant death. Thereafter, you’ll not have to worry over shot pellets, save for in the upper neck region.
    Other than than, I discovered very early on, that when eating shot-killed game, one must of necessity very carefully chew, i.e., slowly and methodically, such as to prevent chomping down hard on said shot pellets.
    Of course, that causes one to thoroughly masticate each mouthful such as to ensure the very best of digestion as well! The side benefit: You don’t eat nearly as much because slow eating also makes one feel full sooner as well.

  43. Thanksgiving can be a time for celebrating a good summer and a bountiful harvest. It can be a time for friendships and family and being thankful for many things. It has not become overly commercial and it need not become controversial as some Hollywood big shot has tried to make it.
    Enjoy what you have, and share. John’s mom.

  44. Peter S, no I didn’t intend to come across as obnoxious but that is how everyone who keeps insisting their invisible friends exist outside of their brains always comes across to us non-believers. If you got evidence that can be verified independently and that can refute the counter evidence I’ll stand corrected.
    I think it’s very important to clarify that not all people leery of the wild claims of the alleged catastrophic AGW hypothesis are all believers in the wild claims of alleged god.
    May you enjoy your family and friends on this day of giving thanks for the hard work each has done this year.

  45. From Peter S on November 25, 2010 at 5:20 pm:

    pwl – I’m not sure how you intended to come across. Probably not obnoxious, but you managed it anyway.

    I agree, he managed it. Spectacularly.
    Picking an argument with a 221-year old proclamation that used the expected language of the time? What’s next? On the Fourth of July he’ll complain about the Declaration of Independence, saying how man was endowed with those certain inalienable rights by… no one? They just happened?
    Ah well, it’s Thanksgiving. God bless you too, pwl.

  46. DocWat says: “I had friends that raised genetically modified turkeys”. Boy, I would pay big bucks to see a GM turkey or a GM animal of any kind for that matter. Your friends might be having a little fun with you. Happy Thanksgiving just the same.

  47. DocWat says: “I had friends that raised the new genetically modified turkeys. Every time it threatened rain they would rush out to put the turkeys into their poultry shed. When I asked why, they said that if left out in the rain, the turkeys would look up at the raindrops. The rain would enter their airways and the turkeys would drown. While I never saw a drowned turkey. I frequently saw a family of six frantically herding turkeys into their shed. Presumably the wild ones are brighter.”
    The drowning turkeys, like drowning polar bears, are a canard.
    http://www.snopes.com/critters/wild/turkey.asp
    My mother said the “domesticated” turkeys often got sick with a disease called ‘pip.’ The difference may not have been genetic, but the result of crowding more turkeys into a smaller space. Domesticated turkeys are also, according to the link above, more likely to stampede like yahoos leaving a soccer match, resulting in loss of turkeys.
    If you get the right kind of “Wild Turkey,” you don’t have to worry about shot.

  48. Max Hugoson says:
    November 25, 2010 at 12:50 pm
    Minnesocold this morning: 6 F just before sunrise (predicted: 16 F).
    Max today (now predicted) 13 to 14 F. 10 MPH wind = -10 F wind chill.
    Translation: For MN this year, THANKSGIVING MEANS THANKS FOR THE WINTER! (We love it.)
    [–snippage–]
    So next – MERRY X-MASS EVERYONE ! And to ALL A GOOD NIGHT! HO HO HO!

    HEY! Who you be call’n a ‘HO?’
    :o)

  49. pwl says: “Peter S, no I didn’t intend to come across as obnoxious but that is how everyone who keeps insisting their invisible friends exist outside of their brains always comes across to us non-believers. . .”
    So if they do it, that excuses your doing it?

  50. Excellent Mr Watts….. It is necessary to maintain traditions…. American exceptionalism excels by those who promote it, understand it and maintain it.

  51. “And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed;”

  52. I don’t know if turkeys will actually drown, but, I lived within a mile of a turkey farm for several years. When it rained the farmers would either cover the birds or get them inside covered cages. While they were so busied, the domestic turkeys would be standing with their heads tilted back and mouths open. I claim no knowledge of why, only what I saw.
    A wag?? They were trying to see what was hitting them.

  53. Yes domestic turkeys are dumber than a bag of rocks. They are protein production units and little else.
    When I worked with my local State Emergency Services office we were trying to work out a warning system for nearby residents to the Ft. St. Vrain Nuclear power plant in case it had a emergency event that required the public to shelter in place.
    The logical choice in a relatively rural area, was a network of out door sirens to warn the public out doors that something was going on.
    The local turkey farmers shot it down because they claimed that every time the outdoor sirens sounded they would lose a bunch of turkeys as described in the Snopes article, and no one wanted to repay them against such losses.
    As mentioned here, the old saw about turkeys looking up when it rained was common knowledge and none of the turkey farmers contested that statement.
    Larry

  54. It is good to give thanks, count blessings or to simply reflect on all that is good in the world.
    However I was intrigued to notice the President dated his proclamation “3d day of October, A.D. 1789”.
    Was that the common way of expressing the date in the US back then? What happened in the history of the USA to cause the change from the logical sequence of “day/month/year” to the uniquely US sequence of “month/day/year”?

  55. Happy Thanksgiving to you Anthony, your family and all of your blog readers. On Saturday we will have our annual American Thanksgiving Day meal and celebration here in Sweden with 20+ family and friends(and two turkeys at about 6 bucks a pound…$159.00 just for the birds…) gathered around the table. We have much to give thanks.
    🙂

  56. H says:
    November 25, 2010 at 8:55 pm
    It is good to give thanks, count blessings or to simply reflect on all that is good in the world.
    However I was intrigued to notice the President dated his proclamation “3d day of October, A.D. 1789″.
    Was that the common way of expressing the date in the US back then? What happened in the history of the USA to cause the change from the logical sequence of “day/month/year” to the uniquely US sequence of “month/day/year”?

    Your question may be answered thusly: There were several ways of addressing that matter of calendar dates. So, in order to ‘standardize’ the matter —and abbreviate appropriately— it was agreed upon that said calendar dates be configured such as to not confuse.
    But as with most other things, said standardization has not been entirely adopted, and thank goodness for that, lest we all become so ‘uniform’ as to be mere automatons, i.e., BORG (the Star Trek variety).

  57. So much for separation of church and state.
    And a special thank you to Anthony for this most excellent website.
    Happy Thanksgiving to all you pilgrims, wherever you may reside.[the hell you say 🙂 . . you too big guy . . mod]

  58. pwl, as a non-believer, I am with you. Here in Australia we get more than enough kowtowing to an imagined deity, but in the USA it must be overwhelming. God on every corner & all points between. If we could get rid of religion, at least half the world’s problems would be solved.

  59. jorgekafkazar says: November 25, 2010 at 6:57 pm
    . . . drowning turkeys, like drowning polar bears, are a canard.

    Ducks are canards.

  60. I know people are generous and the following appeal is for the families of the Pike River Miners who have been lost
    A lonely death, an inexpressible grief
    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2010/11/a-lonely-death-an-inexpressible-grief/
    the details of the appeal are here:
    Richard Treadgold says:
    November 26, 2010 at 3:50 pm
    The BNZ have given me a little more detail. They have waived transaction fees, so everything you send will reach the miners’ relief fund.
    For New Zealand residents, the bank account to credit — through internet banking or at your nearest BNZ branch — is:
    Pike River Mine BNZ Appeal
    Greymouth branch
    02 0844 0074501-00
    From overseas, the easiest donation method is with a credit card through Grab One at http://www.grabone.co.nz/dunedin-invercargill/pike-river-miners-relief-fund. If you go to the Australian site at http://www.grabone.com.au, there’s a link to the NZ site at the top of the page.
    You have to register first, which is easy and painless.
    PLEASE NOTE that there’s a limit of $5 per donation, but NO CREDIT CARD FEES are charged by Grab One, so to donate more, just perform multiple transactions.
    Large overseas donations
    For those of greater generosity wanting to donate three or four-figure amounts, you should use a Telegraphic Transfer from your local bank. As well as the basic account information shown above, you will need this:
    Bank address:
    Store 91,
    MacKay Street,
    Greymouth 7805.
    SWIFT BKNZNZ22
    Your transaction will cost something at your end, plus there’s a fee of $25 added at this end.
    The latest news is that $1.3 million has poured in to the miners’ relief fund.
    Thank you for your generosity.

  61. pwl was hardly being “obnoxious” by pointing out that religion is the enemy of skepticism. Religious faith is the antithesis of skeptical inquiry.
    Of course it isn’t surprising that colonial era politicians would attempt to give official sanction to Jehovah, considering that the vast majority of citizens (land owning white males) where Christian.
    A few hours ago I ate Thanksgiving dinner with three Christians and two Muslims. They all prayed at the same time and pretended to be praying to the same deity for the sake of pleasant dinner conversation.
    I have talked to each of them separately and of course they all slam each other’s “false god” behind each other’s back.
    AGW proponents at least pay lip service to acknowledging rational inquiry as the only path to understanding the universe. Sadly this is only a cover for their pseudo-religious arrogance. Multiply their haughty smugness by 100 and you get an idea of how the average “believer” comes off to an atheist.
    If thinking of Thanksgiving as a time for family and friends to come together to celebrate the fruits of their labors and their good fortune disturbs you, and instead you insist that it must be a religious celebration thanking Yahweh for feeding and clothing you then I fear you have missed what the rest of us consider the “true” value of the holiday.

  62. From Ray Boorman on November 25, 2010 at 10:40 pm:

    If we could get rid of religion, at least half the world’s problems would be solved.

    What, when it has long been the “enlightened” opinion that religion is a great tool to keep the unwashed masses under control?
    Ah, what a world that’d be. No expectation of eternal reward for good deeds done that do not yield immediate secular benefits. No fear of eternal punishment, the “worst” that could happen to one is painless non-existence, and everyone is going to die anyway. What matters is only what you have when living, whatever power and wealth you can grasp with your own hands.
    Only half? In short order the world overpopulation problem would be taken care of. Heck, most of the world’s population is mired in suffering and poverty, might as well do them a favor. Besides, resources are scarce, we have Peak Oil and Peak Everything-Else to worry about. Why send aid to third-world countries and help them develop? Those people are squatting on resources we may need, and there’s no benefit to developing your competition. Best course is to nip that problem in the bud, permanently.
    It’d also help speed up humanity’s evolution, with the increased selection of the strong and/or clever over the weak. Also consider how much of modern medicine is devoted to extending the lives of those too weak to survive on their own, with perhaps-chronic conditions requiring more than a quick fix and short recovery, and frequently paid for by leeching the wealth of those who are most productive, especially in the case of providing for the elderly. Besides, modern medicine has gotten unnatural, with genetic engineering, and cures for cancer yielding dangerous nuclear waste, and pharmaceutical production generating deadly toxic chemical wastes, with drugs and their residues increasingly polluting our water supplies. When natural selection is again allowed free rein, much of the weakness that medicine coddles will be gone, and humanity’s genetic base will be winnowed, made stronger. For added benefit, favoring strength and speed will increase the general fitness of the population and do wonders to reduce the obesity epidemic.
    Needless to say, that pesky (C)AGW problem will end up resolved as well.
    Such a wonderful Green paradise it would be. Mankind once again living as the animals in Nature do, in tune with our Natural primal instincts, living as Nature intended! If we can get rid of these artificial constraints on our behavior long imposed upon mankind by false religion, those very constraints that we foolishly allowed to be the foundation of our civilizations throughout history… It would be glorious.

  63. From Lance on November 26, 2010 at 12:21 am:

    A few hours ago I ate Thanksgiving dinner with three Christians and two Muslims. They all prayed at the same time and pretended to be praying to the same deity for the sake of pleasant dinner conversation.
    I have talked to each of them separately and of course they all slam each other’s “false god” behind each other’s back.

    And you have found it acceptable to come here and slam their “false god(s)” behind their backs. Noted.

    Religious faith is the antithesis of skeptical inquiry.

    Atheism is also against skeptical inquiry, as it is the absolute rejection of the possible existence of a divine being without appropriate scientific proof. The correct stance for the skeptical viewpoint would be agnosticism, neither confirm nor deny without solid proof either way, remain open to reconsidering a position when presented with new and/or better evidence.

  64. Oh….PWL and Lance… we’ve GOTTA talk, guys.
    I, too, was a skeptical ‘unbeliever’. Even if you don’t wanna know what I did which remedied that… I’m gonna tell you anyway. I ‘dared GOD’. I guess it was a ‘prayer’ ’cause that’s just talking to Him…and I DARED Him to prove His existence.
    (Being hit by a 2/5 ton pine tree in Banff, Canada when I was 17, wasn’t even enough for me… The tree fell on my right shoulder while I was in a tent and at the point of impact – I blacked out. I woke with 200 lbs. of pressure across my lower back. It was heavy – but, I should breathe. Also – let it be noted… I had only one small nick on my chin (no band aid needed) where I hit the ground after impact.
    Weeks later – I had forgotten all about the incident and went to my dentist. You can imagine my surprise when he said: “What HAPPENED to your BITE???” Now, I wasn’t in the position to actually talk at that moment, right? So, he continued: “Cynthia – your BITE has improved!!!”
    Now, guys – THIS IS TRUTH. So……… he didn’t believe me till my mom walked into the office and again related the story of ‘me an’ the tree’… He then, ‘scientifically’ exclaimed: “Well…I’m not going to recommend that therapy to any of my other clients.” End of Story.
    Now ~ while a word for ‘coincidence’ doesn’t appear anywhere in the original Hebrew old Testament, I didn’t KNOW Hebrew…..so even that didn’t dull my skepticism, so I do, indeed, empathize with you two. But, since you guys seem like you like empirical truth………. I’m gonna DARE YOU. It was a full 15 years after that tree hit me that I finally was rescued by JESUS. (does that name, offend??? Big Deal, if it does, ’cause it’s still Thanksgiving, and I’m gonna give truthful thanks this year, so please ‘get over it.) Now – here’s my DARE.
    You two go and do what I did. Find a quiet place and DARE GOD to prove that HE exists. Do what I did. DEMAND ‘out loud’ that HE show Himself to you, and to prove that Jesus Christ is LORD. Ohhhhh….guys…. He loves you just like He loves me and that’s why I’m daring you. Do it. Place your immense intellect against the God of the Universe and just ASK HIM to give you a ‘one on one’, okay???
    Then………….if you dare. Sit back and wait. If you are as lost as I was……..it shouldn’t take much time for your requests to come to fruition. If you have the guts – gentlemen…..(I’m presuming) go on and dare Him to make Himself known. And – if you choose to do it – just remember that if things get ‘scary’ call out for Jesus. He’ll handle the rest. (I’ve known Him for 20 years now……and He’s the ONLY ONE who has never ‘ever’ let me down.)
    This comment – should you choose to accept its ‘dare’, will be the harbinger of the greatest Gift you two could EVER receive. And……..hahaha………you’ll even be able to keep those egos of yours, too.
    Remember now, this is a FORMER skeptic writing this and I’m DARING you, right now fellas……. Wanna give it a ‘go’, as us Aussies say???
    Praying for you both – Cynthia Lauren Thorpe

  65. Thanks, kadaka.
    pwl, Lance, Boorman: thanks also. Spend a few hours with Dr. Godwin at onecosmos blog: you will find great opportunities for the energetic agnostic. Atheists may discover perplexity.

  66. @kadaka
    “Atheism is also against skeptical inquiry, as it is the absolute rejection of the possible existence of a divine being without appropriate scientific proof”
    Argumentum ad Ignorantiam
    and shifting the burden of proof
    thats just sad

  67. Desiderata
    Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,
    and remember what peace there may be in silence.
    As far as possible, without surrender,
    be on good terms with all persons.
    Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
    and listen to others,
    even to the dull and the ignorant;
    they too have their story.
    Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
    they are vexatious to the spirit.
    If you compare yourself with others,
    you may become vain or bitter,
    for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
    Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
    Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
    it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
    Exercise caution in your business affairs,
    for the world is full of trickery.
    But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
    many persons strive for high ideals,
    and everywhere life is full of heroism.
    Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
    Neither be cynical about love,
    for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
    it is as perennial as the grass.
    Take kindly the counsel of the years,
    gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
    Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
    But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
    Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
    Beyond a wholesome discipline,
    be gentle with yourself.
    You are a child of the universe
    no less than the trees and the stars;
    you have a right to be here.
    And whether or not it is clear to you,
    no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
    Therefore be at peace with God,
    whatever you conceive Him to be.
    And whatever your labors and aspirations,
    in the noisy confusion of life,
    keep peace in your soul.
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
    it is still a beautiful world.
    Be cheerful. Strive to be happy. Be thankful.

  68. I believe in the faith of elephants. Now that’s a spiritual life you can hang your hat on. Anyone watching elephants visiting a boneyard or saying goodby to an elephant that had died during migration is a study in the quiet ways of honoring both life and death. Absolutely amazing to watch. That we haven’t seen it in other animals could be due to the fact that we haven’t looked for it.

  69. David, UK:
    Loved that link about Plymouth. Must get a copy of the books referred to in the post. My grandparents raised me. I grew up on an old ranch in NE Oregon. I thought we lived in the lap of luxury. Grandma grew so many veggies, caught so many fish, and along side her man shot so many birds, deer, and elk, that she had to rent freezer space from not one but 3 different grocers. We ate like hogs. And we ate hogs too. She was also a fabulous seamstress and could make sturdy jeans out of Grandpa’s old bib overalls. Both were also well educated and quite worldly in their outlook. I absolutely treasure the education I got from these two folks.

  70. Anthony Watts says: November 25, 2010 at 10:21 am
    Climate change could one day affect the cost and quality of dishes traditionally served for Thanksgiving Day dinner, suggests a recent paper in the journal Food Research International. Pasty, dry turkey meat along with expensive fruits, vegetables and potatoes could be on the horizon if more variable extremes in regional weather patterns continue as a likely result of climate change, indicates author Neville Gregory. The usual star of the Thanksgiving Day feast, roast turkey, could suffer in quality as a result.

    I’ve hunted native turkeys from Texas, Alabama, to the southern reaches of S. Dak., Mon. etc. None further north, (excepting coastal states). It’s very obvious that climate change will restrict the turkey range. Colder, that is.
    The genetic modification of turkeys, scientifically, is restricted to simple Mendelian genetics. They breed this tom with that hen.
    Pamela Gray says:November 25, 2010 at 11:08 am
    Real turkeys are very hardy and can withstand all kinds of bad weather, cold or hot. At issue is what people are used to. People are used to big breasted, genetically engineered Toms.

    genetically engineered Toms means sexually crossed. But I’ve seen a few hens that were big breasted. ;~P
    Happy over-eating recovery day!

  71. rtgr said on November 26, 2010 at 6:00 am:

    @kadaka
    “Atheism is also against skeptical inquiry, as it is the absolute rejection of the possible existence of a divine being without appropriate scientific proof”
    Argumentum ad Ignorantiam
    and shifting the burden of proof
    thats just sad

    I concur. From Wikipedia:

    Argument from ignorance, also known as argumentum ad ignorantiam or appeal to ignorance, is an informal logical fallacy. It asserts that a proposition is necessarily true because it has not been proven false (or vice versa). This represents a type of false dichotomy in that it excludes a third option: there is insufficient investigation and the proposition has not yet been proven to be either true or false.[1] In debates, appeals to ignorance are sometimes used to shift the burden of proof.
    Carl Sagan famously criticized the practice by referring to it as “impatience with ambiguity”, pointing out that “absence of evidence is not evidence of absence”. This should not, however, be taken to mean that one can never possess evidence that something does not exist.

    I specifically chose the third option, referred to as agnosticism, as correct for the skeptical viewpoint as there exists insufficient scientific evidence to conclusively argue either way. I am unaware of any rigorous reputable scientific investigations into either side. I am aware of the limits of technology in detection, how we freely accept the existence of things undetectable thousands or even fifty years ago. We even accept things not directly detected because the prevailing theories say they exist, based on other evidence supporting those theories.
    We currently have insufficient scientific evidence of either the absence or presence of a divine being. To assume a position on either side, perhaps while saying the science is settled, must be an act of faith by definition. To insist either side must be true would indeed be an argumentum ad ignorantiam.

  72. While I totally agree with you, Kadaka –
    I think we can agree that having to exercise ‘faith’ is the key here.
    Men (and, Yes. Women, too) exercise Faith in either a supreme Being – or they want to become that Being – and therefore, they worship themselves. I therefore align myself with those (from the beginning of time) who have been apprehended by a Being greater than myself and my intellect (which, Yes. If Truth is told – I did used to revere.)
    Therefore, I – ‘in total love and truth – extend my ‘dare’ to all of you who haven’t as of yet – been thus apprehended. Rather than throw ‘pot shots’ at other humans – as is often done – have the balls/guts to take on the Big Guy, Himself. Ignoring the state of the human soul’s bankruptcy without God demeans any claim that one possesses
    any semblance of intellect. Shame on you sillies…but, this soul isn’t gonna ‘bash you’ or make you conform to some behavior I’ve drempt up, for……I too, love my Freedom
    and I believe you may, too…so…………..GO FOR IT and place your angst where it will yield the most. Go to your Creator in the privacy of your own heart and argue your case. All the other garbage you spew is truthfully none of anyone else’s concern, for your life is your own.
    God bless you, regardless – those of you who are now exposed as cowards, should you not take up my challenge.
    C.L. Thorpe

  73. I can’t help it… as long as we continue to toss around a dead language, as well…….. my all time favorite is:
    Illigitimi Non carborundum.
    That one, really helps me.
    C.L. Thorpe

  74. Want ‘Proof’ of God’s existence? (rather than examining His Creation?)
    I was walking away from the computer and David Wilkerson’s newest comment just came in. I ask any of you still on this site – to read it. He’s the guy who had the guts to hang out for Christ in NYC in the 70’s with Nicki Cruz et al.
    If you research who this guy is, this commentary should put to rest all anxiety for those who love Truth.
    Thorpie
    —————————————————————
    A CRY FROM THE HEART
    I believe God’s merciful love is revealed in response to a cry from the
    heart—not just any cry, but a humble cry for deliverance. The Bible has much
    to say about this cry from the heart. “In my distress I called upon the Lord,
    and cried unto my God; he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came
    before him, even into his ears” (Psalm 18:6).
    “Many times did he deliver them; but they provoked him with their counsel, and
    were brought low for their iniquity. Nevertheless he regarded their affliction,
    when he heard their cry” (Psalm 106:43-44).
    You can be sure that a cry to God will always be answered by a healing word
    from heaven! No one is too wicked or too hopeless if he reaches out to God in
    humility. The story of the wicked King Manasseh proves it! The Bible says he
    was one of the most wicked kings of Israel. “And he did that which was evil in
    the sight of the Lord… For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah
    his father had destroyed; and he reared up altars for Baal…and worshipped all
    the host of heaven, and served them…. And he made his son pass through the
    fire…and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards; he wrought much wickedness
    in the sight of the Lord” (2 Kings 21:2-6).
    “So Manasseh made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to err, and to do
    worse than the heathen.… And the Lord spake to Manasseh, and to his people;
    but they would not hearken” (2 Chronicles 33:9-10).
    Is there hope for someone who gets so far from God, so possessed by evil and
    darkness? Yes, if he will humble himself, and confess and believe Christ’s
    victory at the cross. Manasseh ended up a prisoner in a foreign nation, bound
    with chains. What a vivid picture of the wages of sin. But in his affliction,
    he cried out and God heard him, forgave him, and restored him.
    “And when he was in affliction, he besought the Lord his God, and humbled
    himself greatly before the God of his fathers, and prayed unto him; and he was
    entreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to
    Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord he was God” (2
    Chronicles 33:12-13).
    “And he took away the strange gods, and the idol out of the house of the
    Lord, and all the altars that he had built in the mount of the house of the
    Lord, and in Jerusalem, and cast them out of the city” (v. 15).
    The word of hope, forgiveness, mercy, love and restoration is for you! Heed his
    Word, repent, and then be made whole and walk with the Lord! There is no sin
    that can’t be forgiven—no one is too far down to be healed and restored.
    —————————————————–
    The ‘dare’ I gave IS the cry of a human heart. Try it sometime.

  75. Wild turkey populations are rather vulnerable to persistent rains. Hens don’t make nests, not really, mostly just a grouping of eggs on bare ground. The chicks that do hatch often succumb to cold rains. Though turkeys will breed into summer, if the rains continue to pound down, the hatch will be especially poor. That has happened in Mizzourah & Awkinsaw the last three spring/summers and populations have dropped. The Arkansas Game & Fish Commission has cut the month long season and bag limit in half.
    The little ice age began with loads and loads of rain btw.
    Quail populations are down also. Except for deer, in many regions [self snip] near everything is down population wise. Except…
    There seem to be too many predators. Including feral and non-feral house cats.

  76. Well hold on there pardner.
    So y’alls go and read George Washington’s proclamation again.
    What he proposed was a ONE TIME EVENT. (A well deserved one); but he did NOT decree Thanksgiveing Day as the Third Thruseday of each November.
    I believe that it fell to President Abraham Lincoln to make Thanksgiving a perpetual holiday; perhaps the most truly American of holidays. But the legal disclaimer. There basically has never been any organized society or civilization from even the most primitive; that has not observed some sort of “harvest festival” kind of celebration. The dawn of “thanksgiving” goes back almost to the beginnings of homo sapiens.
    But check your history books.

  77. “”””” kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    November 25, 2010 at 6:36 pm
    From Peter S on November 25, 2010 at 5:20 pm:
    pwl – I’m not sure how you intended to come across. Probably not obnoxious, but you managed it anyway.
    I agree, he managed it. Spectacularly.
    Picking an argument with a 221-year old proclamation that used the expected language of the time? What’s next? On the Fourth of July he’ll complain about the Declaration of Independence, saying how man was endowed with those certain inalienable rights by… no one? They just happened? “””””
    Well actually the Declaration of Independence says UNalienable rights.
    And actually what WE were endowed with, was the same darn thing, that ALL other living things were endowed with; namely the opportunity to scrap with every other living thing in whatever manner we found beneficial to our continued existence.
    And those that adopted effective survival behavior, tended to survive; absent major catastrophes beyond adaptation.
    Mother Gaia calls it the “Survival of the fittest.” That is what we were endowed with. And you don’t need a whizzbang bomb designing super computer to discover that wasting precious resources on the unfit, is to drive the system in the direction of non-survival.
    So Mother Gaia, would let the sabre-toothed tigers eat the lame and the blind; and anything less than the fittest; just as she does in virtually every other situation. Even the old growth forest is a war zone with fig vines or Rata vines attacking mature trees, and slaughtering them; even though at a speed that makes watching the grass grow into a drag race.
    So who was it that decided that MAN does not live by bread alone. That blind person with enhanced other senses could be a wonderful organist, and make the pipes sing or shudder at his/er whim; and many of them have.
    How about Steven Hawking; whom even the crows would make a meal out of.
    Those whom Mother Gaia would choose to sacrifice to the “Survival of the fittest” have been protected and nurtured to the extent of their needs; so that they too could participate to the best of their abilities and desires; perhaps in the performances of a Stevie Wonder.
    So who was it that decreed that ALL men are created equal. IT WAS US ! That’s what make US Human; that we risk destabilizing Mother Gaia’s delicate balance of survival; by “wasting” precious resources, on those less fortunate, who contribute to OUR lives and well being in other ways, than making better hula hoops.
    How sad it is to simply say “god did it.”
    NoWE did it; and we are better for it, that we hold out a hand to those less fortunate.
    And what of our religious traditions ? Is that not a classical example of the “precautionary principle” ? We better believe in a supreme being and a hereafter; because if we don’t and it turns out we are wrong; we are going to catch hell after we take our last breath. Some of us do good things (for others); but do we do it because it’s just the right thing to do as Humans; or do we do it to rack up brownie points or gold stars, in the hereafter. Is that not the purest form of abject selfishness ?
    So I prefer to think that it was Humans; and certainly some before the American Declaration of Independence; who decreed that “all men are created equal” and by the fact of our birth; we are born with all of our rights; not granted by any government; or any supreme dictator who gave the rest of living species along with us, the law of the survival of the fittest.
    Religion in my view is the single greatest scourge to ever inflict the human race. But the framers of our Constitution had the good sense to declare that the Congress shall make NO LAW respecting the establishment of religion; nor PROHIBITING THE FREE EXERCISE THEREOF !
    There is NO mandate of separation of church and state; simply the state can’t promote a state church or religion.
    But we differ from the animals and other species, in that only we are willing to reserve sustenance as needed for those unable to fend equally for themselves; but who enrich ALL of our lives in other countless ways.

  78. Well said. VERY VERY well said.
    I could NOT agree more.
    Thank You for your lucid synopsis, George.
    While Thanksgiving ‘the day’ has passed – I’m continuing my personal Thanksgiving…
    and you’re gonna be part of what I thank GOD for as this… this world of ours seems to be splitting at it’s emotionally charged seams. I thank GOD for all of you of integrity who are lovers of Truth. There’s NOTHING BETTER.
    Let’s hope that while Chris Monckton skewers those silly folks in Cancun with Truth ~ that others of us from all over the globe get into our proper places to bless others.
    C.L. Thorpe

  79. And……George? You’re right. I thank Lincoln for assigning the last Thursday in the month of November as Thanksgiving.
    C.L. Thorpe

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