Racism in the Time of Thanksgiving – Plymouth Rock (1621) to Today (2016)

This is way cool! Hi, it’s me, Ollie, and I just found out that in 1976 James spent Thanksgiving on Cape Cod at Plymouth Rock. Yeah! It’s true. At the time, James was living in Boston. Two dear friends, Lynne and Sam Bowden, were visiting him. They drove to the Cape in their Z car to celebrate a genuine Pilgrims Thanksgiving. Well, sort of. They had Irish coffee and turkey at the local inn, but, as James says, who’s fact checking. Well, truth be told (and I’m a truth teller as an Old English Sheepdog), James told me Plymouth rock is no more than a stepping stone.

It’s the baby steps we take that get us through.

(Thanksgiving 2016 at Barry & Elyn Rosenthal’s in NYC.)

This past week has been uplifting after the election disaster. I got to spend the week in the kennel with my buddies, some old and some new. James spent the week in New York City with friends and seeing movies and theatrical shows. This allowed both of us to forget the fear we have felt ever since the morning after the election, at least for a few hours each day. This year James’ Thanksgiving was spent as they all should, with people from across the globe be they Muslims, Jews, Catholics, gay and straight, women and men, sitting down in harmony.

How quickly the uplifting from Thanksgiving week gives way to sorrow. James believes that while god allows on earth such people as DJT, Mike Pence and Jeff Sessions we need no Hell. These men will make sure our lives are spent, daily, in Hell. Of course, this is in addition to the Military Industrial Complex we will find ourselves under with the likes of retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn as National Security Secretary.

Then again, James informed me that should there be a just god, the Electoral College won’t vote for DJT to be President; but, instead, will put Secretary Clinton in as our next President. Now that would be ever so exciting and revolutionary – YES! He also told me that three of the states that went for DJT are recounting their votes, which could give Secretary Clinton not only the popular vote, but the Electoral College vote as well.

Two weeks ago I mentioned that I might not be able to forgive the people I knew who had voted for DJT. Well, I’m still struggling with this. (I know, that doesn’t deserve a treat.) The main reason has to do with something James told me when I was but a pint-sized puppy. It went something like this….

One of the best things that ever happened to James, who grew up in the segregated south, took place while he was in college. A fellow student, Gregory Kirkland Levy, became one of James’ best friends. Greg, who was nicknamed Bougie, was an African-American student. One of only a handful who attended his college in South Carolina. Having been brought up a bigot, something James struggles with to this day, it was eye opening for him to have the experience of knowing someone who he had been taught was not only inferior, but lazy and no-good. Greg proved to be anything but those things.

Because of this, James exposed me to all kinds of different breeds of dogs so I would learn to like all other dogs, not only those of my kind. This is why, to this day, I love going to the kennel to play with my friends. All other dogs are my friends, no matter the breed or mix, color, size, or any other item that might set us apart. I love them all. (Treat!!) We believe that all mankind should love one another as well. Not simply us dogs.

Which brings me back to the results of the most recent election. It is frightening to both James and me that the shadow of racism has risen its ugly head so viciously in the land of the free (and home of the brave). It had made itself known during the eight years of President Obama’s administration. His being Black brought out the worst in the Republican Party, be they Senators or Representatives, one of whom yelled out “Liar” during President Obama’s State of the Union address early in his Presidency. The good news is that President Obama handled it with grace. The bad news is that DJT has used the latent racism in Americans to his advantage.

Which, in turn, leads me to offer up this for those who create, who like to read/see, who love to lose themselves in books and museums. When you read a good book or visit a museum or gallery, you forget about the nationality of the characters, the authors and the artists. You don’t concern yourself with their skin color or religion. (Yes! I scored another treat with that, but I honestly meant it. I didn’t say it simply for a treat. Reread it and think about it for a minute before going on.)

(James is a proud Secretary Clinton supporter.)

Since Secretary Clinton won the popular vote by something like two million votes and counting, it shows that racism may not be the most popular ism in our land. Both James and I would like to believe that is the case. We have to believe it or else we wouldn’t feel safe living in the United States. Luckily, we live in Vermont that went overwhelmingly for Secretary Clinton, and we know who within our state are the DJT supporters – and we keep our distance.

The forefather’s of this great country (Yes, I may be and Old English Sheepdog, but I’m as American as James.) came to these shores to escape religious persecution, seeking freedom of religion. Some of these same forefathers were atheists – that was the “religion” they wanted to practice. No matter how unimpressed James and his friends were with the size of the stone, James’ visit to Plymouth Rock during that Thanksgiving forty years ago was in celebration of the original giving of thanks held in 1621, three hundred and ninety-five years ago, between the Pilgrims and the Native Americans who found they could sit down and break bread together.

Also, James and his friends were celebrating the decedents of these very same forefathers who exercised their right to form a more perfect government. Let us hope that the law of the land doesn’t get tarnished should DJT (God forbid – a treat!) prevail.

If you’d like to let me know how you feel, you are welcome to do so in the comment section. I always enjoy hearing from you, so please leave a comment on this blog post about this or anything at all.

Until next time,
Short Stories - Author Webpage Help Needed
Sir Oliver of Skygate Farm (you can call me Ollie)

Paw Prints courtesy of www.pawsitivelyloved.com
All photos © James Stack 2016 unless otherwise indicated

2 thoughts on “Racism in the Time of Thanksgiving – Plymouth Rock (1621) to Today (2016)

  1. Could not possibly agree more with every word! Keep fighting the good fight, and keep writing what we all need to hear.

    Dragon wants Ollie to know that she doesn’t care what breed he is, she still loves him! And she would love to meet some of his friends at the kennel. (Actually, I think she just wants to check out her competition. 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

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