S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving: recipes for compassion

Thanksgiving, aka "Turkey Day" to our (now adult) children, is tomorrow in the U.S. It is a big holiday for us, a day traditionally set aside for giving thanks for the year's blessings. It is also an opportunity to build compassion.
  • For the turkey it might mean a vegetarian menu. Ten million Butterball turkeys will be consumed on thanksgiving, however.

  • For homeless people it might mean a traditional turkey dinner, served by smiling volunteers. The National Law Center estimates that 3.5 million people will experience homelessness in any given year.

  • For families it might mean a peaceful atmosphere around the table. For our family it means a gathering of extended family of 20+ people in a small house. But from years of experience we know that it will be noisy and crowded , but peaceful. For that we feel blessed.

  • For families in distress it might mean just being together and safe. We never know how lucky we are until we ourselves, or someone we know gets into such distress.

  • For workers it might mean the next day off. For people in retail it is a long shot. So while your are fighting the shopping crowds, smile as your your clerk checks you out. You are escaping; the clerks have to be there with the crowds.

  • For travelers it might mean good weather or a hybrid vehicle or both. Be compassionate towards your fellow travelers, and we at home wish you a safe trip.

  • For energy companies it might mean people choosing to make that long drive -- "anyway," or students choosing to become engineers because that will be where the jobs are. For the rest of us, it means we can try to have a green Thanksgiving," showing compassion for our beleaguered environment.

  • For merchants it might mean a safe source of toys for tomorrow's "Black Friday" throngs. The transition away from the Chinese market will be wrenching for everyone.

  • For the families of soldiers in harm's way it might mean no uniformed officials at the front door. Please save a huge helping of compassion for our war fighters and their families this Thanksgiving.
What would it take for a good Thursday? Time's gives us clues in its "Snapshot of America" photo essay. Enjoy!

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Cross posted today at Making Good Mondays.

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