As we approach a holiday established to thank God for His blessings on our nation, the American people still believe that our rights come from God, not from government, and that the right to believe and practice our religion must be respected.
Thanksgiving is a special day in this country, not just because of the turkey and football and relatives, but also because of the historical memory that lies at the heart of it. The story of the pilgrims and the Indians is our national story, which means we’d better get it right.
As Allen Guelzo, a visiting scholar at the Simon Center for American Studies, explains, the signing of the Mayflower Compact — a covenant that helped establish in America a political community of self-governing citizens — ought to be one of the principal reasons for celebrating Thanksgiving.
As we eat our Thanksgiving turkey and pumpkin pie, it’s almost unavoidable that politics will come up at the dinner table. Someone says something controversial, another fires back, and 10 minutes later mother is removing the knives from the table so no one gets hurt.
“The radical left would like to offer 1619, the year when enslaved Africans were first brought to our shores, as an alternative date for the American Founding,” says Heritage President Kay James in the series’ introduction. “But the year 1620 would be a better candidate.”
If we fail to cherish the special achievements of 1620, Americans a century from now will look forward through the lens of grievance and back with a feeling of contempt. This war cannot be lost, or our country is lost.