2013-11-27 / Opinion

Thanksgiving reminds us of season’s true meaning

Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks. That's what we hear, anyway. What we see is an entirely different story.

It seems we wouldn't need signs at retailers explaining why they won't be open immediately after dishes are cleared on Thanksgiving Day, but that's what we've got. It seems we wouldn't need to prepare extensive maps and lists and get tips from “extreme” couponers for holiday shopping. But when we look around, that is what we see.

If Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks, Christmas is surely a time to celebrate new life ”“ and the coming of a new year. But what we see is a race to get the most stuff, the best stuff, the newest stuff ”“ stuff, stuff and more stuff.

It's unfortunate that our holiday season has been degradated into a time simply to shop, and how to show off our perceived wealth and worth to our neighbors.

This holiday season, we challenge our readers and the community beyond to put down the shopping lists and take time to enjoy the season and the simpler things. There are many memories to be made ”“ such as attending a tree lighting, ice skating and making or hanging holiday decorations as a family.

In addition to the memories we can make with our families, we must remember that there are many, many people who are struggling this holiday season. And we ask you, for each time you think of a gift you'd like to buy or one you'd like to receive, think about how you can help someone else have a better holiday season, too. Whether it's volunteering your time or making a monetary or food donation, get the entire family involved, so we can all remember and celebrate the true meaning of the holiday season together.

All around the county, we can find inspiration in the good works others are doing. This Thanksgiving Day, and in the days leading up to it, there were nearly a dozen free, community meals, open to all. The planning and work leading up to these events is truly inspiring, as well as the work that goes into the thousands of food boxes that are prepared so those less fortunate can have that special meal in the comfort of their own home.

We thank all those who have given their time, money or other donations to help someone else have a better holiday season, and we urge those who have become consumed by the consumerism to remember the true meaning of the holidays upon us.

Happy Thanksgiving, and we wish you all a happy holiday season.

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Today's editorial was written by City Editor Robyn Burnham Rousseau on behalf of the Journal Tribune Editorial Board. Questions? Comments? Contact Managing Editor Kristen Schulze Muszynski by calling 282-1535, ext. 322, or via email at kristenm@journaltribune.com.

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