A Thanksgiving Lesson
For Ms. Ocasio-Cortez


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© Jack Cashill
November 21, 2018 -

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York knows at least that there is such a thing as Thanksgiving.

On Tuesday, America’s youngest member of Congress proved as much by tweeting, "Team Ocasio spent this morning with ‪@FeedingNYC having fun & packing over 6,000 Thanksgiving meals for families in ALL 5 boroughs!"

Along with the message Ocasio-Cortez included a video of herself dancing to the Sugarhill Gang's version of "Jump on It!"

If Ms. Ocasio-Cortez says nothing more about Thanksgiving before the weekend is out, that will be cause for a minor bit of thanksgiving in and of itself.

If, however, she is listening to her progressive friends in the media, the congresswoman-to-be may not resist the urge to put some racist, xenophobic Trump-loving relative in his or her place.

Thanksgiving, after all, is ripe with opportunities for a young progressive to denounce colonialism, genocide, and the ecological holocaust our Pilgrim forebears allegedly brought forth upon this continent.

Real headlines such as “You’re Morally Obligated to Call Out Your Racist Relatives at Thanksgiving” suggest that more than a few Thanksgiving meals will devolve along these lines. https://bit.ly/2OU11r1

To avoid an intra-family donnybrook, it might be safer and certainly more educational to discuss economics rather than race. And while it is true that the local Indians helped the Pilgrims through their first year, it is equally true that the Pilgrims helped the Indians thereafter.

The Pilgrims were able to help their native friends, much as Ocasio-Cortez is now able to help the less fortunate, because they learned a critical economic lesson in their first few years in Plymouth.

That lesson, phrased in a vernacular Ocasio-Cortez understands, is this: socialism sucks. I will let Plymouth Governor William Bradford tell the rest of the story.

The experience that was had in this common course and condition, tried sundry years and that amongst godly and sober men, may well evince the vanity of that conceit of Plato’s and other ancients applauded by some of later times; that the taking away of property and bringing in community into a commonwealth would make them happy and flourishing; as if they were wiser than God.

For this community (so far as it was) was found to breed much confusion and discontent and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit and comfort.

For the young men, that were most able and fit for labour and service, did repine that they should spend their time and strength to work for other men’s wives and children without any recompense.

The strong, or man of parts, had no more in division of victuals and clothes than he that was weak and not able to do a quarter the other could; this was thought injustice.

The aged and graver men to be ranked and equalized in labours and victuals, clothes, etc., with the meaner and younger sort, thought it some indignity and disrespect unto them.

And for men’s wives to be commanded to do service for other men, as dressing their meat, washing their clothes, etc., they deemed it a kind of slavery, neither could many husbands well brook it.

Upon the point all being to have alike, and all to do alike, they thought themselves in the like condition, and one as good as another; and so, if it did not cut off those relations that God hath set amongst men, yet it did at least much diminish and take off the mutual respects that should be preserved amongst them. And would have been worse if they had been men of another condition.

Let none object this is men’s corruption, and nothing to the course itself. I answer, seeing all men have this corruption in them, God in His wisdom saw another course fitter for them.  

Happy Thanksgiving!




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