Why the turkey is not our national bird, and why America belongs to us

Thanksgiving is one of America’s few meaningful holidays in a nation that has been blessed with incredible natural resources and even more incredible good luck at key points in our history. But our greatest resource is one we have built for ourselves: America’s strong social cohesion. Our ability to stand together has carried us through the severe crises of the past two centuries.

Now a new time of crisis begins, and as always centrifugal forces appear to alienate us from our past and from each other. This makes us easy to lead.

Thanksgiving offers an opportunity to remember who we are, coming together to celebrate — and recall our shared history and remember that America belongs to us. No matter how powerful our foes, foreign and domestic, we can are responsible for America and the ability to win.

See Christopher Lasch’s work for an intellectual analysis of this, especially The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy (1994). For a musical explanation suitable for Thanksgiving see the “The Egg” by Sherman Edwards from the play “1776”. It explains why we have the eagle as our national bird — not the turkey or the dove. It’s well worth five minutes of your time.

Best wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!

1776
Available at Amazon.

Adams:
It’s a masterpiece, I say!
They will cheer every word, every letter.

Jefferson:
I wish I felt that way.

Franklin:
I believe I can put it better
Now then attend, as friend to friend
On our Declaration Committee
For us I see immortality.

All:
In Philadelphia City

Franklin:
A farmer, a lawyer, and a sage
A bit gouty in the leg
You know it’s quite bizarre
To think that here we are
Playing midwives to an egg.

All:
We’re waiting for the chirp, chirp, chirp
Of an eaglet being born
We’re waiting for the chirp, chirp, chirp
On this humid Monday morning in this
Congressional incubator.

Franklin:
God knows the temperature’s hot enough
To hatch a stone, let alone an egg.

All:
We’re waiting for the scratch, scratch, scratch
Of that tiny little fellow
Waiting for the egg to hatch
On this humid Monday morning in this
Congressional incubator.

Adams:
God knows the temperature’s hot enough
To hatch a stone.

Jefferson:
But will it hatch an egg?

Adams:
The eagle’s going to crack the shell
Of the egg that England laid.

All:
Yes, so we can tell, tell, tell
On this humid Monday morning in this
Congressional incubator.

Franklin:
And as just as Tom here has written
Though the shell may belong to Great Britain,
The eagle inside belongs to us!

All:
And as just as Tom here has written
We say to hell with Great Britain!
The eagle inside belongs to us!

For More Information

If you liked this post, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about ways to reform our politics, and especially these about Thanksgiving…

  1. A Thanksgiving Day note.
  2. Let’s give thanks for America’s luck, and try to deserve it!
  3. For Thanksgiving, Walmart shows us the New America.
  4. Make this a special Thanksgiving: take a first and easy step to reforming America.
  5. Looking back on USMC thanksgivings, reminding us of things for which we should be grateful.
  6. Let’s give thanks for America’s luck, and try to deserve it!