A Thankless Thanksgiving
Technically this post is titled The Hell With The Christmas Spirit. It is my complaint about society’s focus upon doing good deeds and being kind during the holiday season. Read the words below and you’ll gain more insight into my irritation with it.
I dislike it because people are hungry year round and I think that the message is wrong. Don’t just give because some people can’t make Thanksgiving dinner without help. Give because those same people have trouble feeding their families on Monday and Tuesday. Give because Friday morning some kids skip breakfast because mom and dad can’t afford it.
Every year I talk to my kids about this and why we need to give back year round and not just during one particular time.
Every year I blog about why I hate hearing about the Christmas spirit. Inevitably these posts generate a variety of emails from my readers ranging from those that politely try to explain why I am wrong to those that suggest I might engage in some sort of anatomically impossible act or better yet…die.
Well my friends I suppose that were I flexible enough I might consider the middle option. It would save a lot of time and money. Just think I wouldn’t have to engage in small talk, cuddle or try to silently sneak away. The third option isn’t quite as interesting to me as I have quite a few things to do and death is really far down the list. However, I would like to address the man who says that I am going to burn in hell because I don’t share his beliefs. Yes, I am sure about my own beliefs and I don’t need to promote them by engaging in religious terror, but thanks for playing.
The real point of this nonsense is to remind everyone that hunger, hopelessness and hurt do not magically disappear after the holiday season. I simply hate the idea of focusing our attention on giving because of the time of year. I have heard all of the arguments about why it makes sense to make the appeal now and I just don’t buy it.
But this year I want to point the spotlight at a different group as well. Let’s not focus the beam on those who are living on the streets or who are “traditionally” poor. Let’s talk about our friends and family who are struggling in silence. They are college educated, hard working members of society who have fallen upon hard times.
They are men and women who have always been productive members of society, but for one reason or another they are struggling now. They live among you. You know them. You see them on a regular basis but you probably don’t hear their stories. They are sad, heartbroken and uninterested in pity. They don’t want to be lectured about what they could or should have done. They don’t want to be judged for for their situations.
All they want is an opportunity to take care of their families. They don’t want hand outs, but a hand up and their numbers are growing. Each day they are beating their heads against stone, fighting for each inch and wondering what they must have done wrong. It may sound like hyperbole or some sort of sad story that you would see on Lifetime, but it is not.
It is life and it is killing people. Their spirits are being broken and their faith is being crushed. The hardest part for many is the feeling that they are dying a slow death. It is like fighting a giant anaconda that slowly squeezes you to death.
And that my friends is my very happy message of cheer and good will towards men.