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Thanksgiving gets a bum rap

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By John Whitlock

Sometimes, Thanksgiving gets a bum rap.

I’m not a global sociologist but I doubt there are many other holidays  celebrated across the world where food is such a focus.

A lot of cultures have foods that are associated with a holiday but I would guess there aren’t many in which the meal is the centerpiece of activity.

When people talk about the bad things associated with Thanksgiving, they talk about the excesses. Too much sodium. Too many starches. Too many pies. Critics say there is just too much food and yes, we do know there are people starving in Africa. 

But the meal traditionally prepared by our grandmothers, mothers, sisters and wives isn’t an attempt to trigger the onset of adult diabetes.

The meal is a message.

When you look down the long line of turkey, ham, casseroles, potatoes and desserts, it’s probably more than most people deserve.

The message is ... everything is OK. Everything is alright. We can gather here as a family, enjoy each other’s company and know that there is more than enough bounty for all of us. 

For 364 days out of the year, life can be tough. Sometimes people aren’t sure if they will have enough money or food to get through the month, week or the day.

We can take comfort in knowing that no matter how much stress and pressure we endure, for a few hours once a year, all our loved ones are pulled together to a single table for the simple act of sharing.

We will pay for it later with bigger waistlines and turkey-induced sleepiness. We should all skip that second pecan pie and send the money to fight famine.

But don’t forget to look over your spread at the smiles of your loved ones and remember just how lucky you are.

•••••

Last week, I reminded readers to keep some of their Christmas cash in Owen County and received a lot of positive reaction.

The local merchants depend on your support now more than ever.

Make a promise to yourself that you’ll buy at least some of your Christmas presents here in Owen County.

I’ve already got my eyes on a few things for my mom and wife that I know they will appreciate.

So take a moment or two out of your day and give the local businesses  a chance to earn your money and keep your cash in Owen County.