- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 26, 2009


Since when did Thanksgiving become a time for suffering limitations? Coming hard on the heels of NBC’s annual Green Week, we are hearing the now commonplace annual buzz about making this year’s Thanksgiving eco-friendly and sustainable. It is another liberal plot to suck the joy out of life.

To the left, Thanksgiving is steeped in sin. It always has been politically incorrect to liberals who see it as a celebration of the European invasion of North America. The day is known as “thanks-taking” to American Indian activists. But in recent years, Thanksgiving has become an affront to environmental activists as well. It is the day when America’s carbon footprints grow three sizes as people travel long distances to feast on factory-fed turkeys and consume far too much electricity watching football on TV. The answer, they preach, is to cut back. Don’t travel. Eat less, and sustainably. Take walks instead of watching bowl games.

The notion of a “sustainable Thanksgiving” has a whiff of yuppiedom about it. The movement was created by and for those who can afford to choose expensive alternatives like organic food and designer turkey. These are people who look forward to pointing out to their guests how virtuous they are because they are burning soy-based candles and composting their vegetable peelings.

“The New England colonists never intended for Thanksgiving to be a day of gluttony,” author Elyssa East sniffed in the New York Times. But gluttony is a vice; Thanksgiving is a celebration of virtues that made the plenty possible. The notion of a sustainable Thanksgiving is at odds with the spirit of the holiday. We are not giving thanks for limits, but for abundance. Especially in times of relative want, it is important to recognize and celebrate the blessings of our country. Thanksgiving and sustainability cannot coexist. Everything about Thanksgiving is unsustainable: the feasting, the football, the Macy’s parade. The most sustainable Thanksgiving would be none at all.

Thanksgiving should be celebrated in a spirit of hope, faith and optimism. It is a time to acknowledge and rejoice in the blessings of being American. It is the holiday during which friends and family gather to renew the bonds of harmony and honor our Creator for the joys of life. This is a tradition worth sustaining.

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