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November 2017 AD
Thanksgivings -- before the Pilgrims' Thanksgiving
Christopher Columbus sailed to discover a New World in 1492 AD. The Spanish gave thanks to God for the discovery on a new route to China, the previous path having been closed to Christian Spain by Muslims, ever since Spain threw out the co-rule of Muslims and Jews, following a horrific 800-year subjugation of Christians.
The Spanish gave thanks for the founding of St. Augustine in Florida and later in El Paso in Texas.
Our own English founders gave thanks to the founding of Jamestown in 1603 AD. And to the re-founding of Jamestown after the failure of the Roanoke Colony.
But we do not celebrate these fine reasons for Thanksgivings.
Why? Because they do not define the American character.
Thanksgiving - but not for religious freedom
Many falsely look to the Pilgrims as examples of religious freedom and tolerance.
As the story goes, the Pilgrims had finally found at Plymouth Colony a place they could freely practice their religion.
But in fact, while they were persecuted for their intolerant Calvinist-leaning religious beliefs in England, they had left for the city of Leiden in Holland which had given them all the unfettered religious freedom they ever desired. There was no religious persecution of Pilgrims in Leiden which would force them to leave civilization for utter wilderness.
But the other side of unfettered religious freedom for Pilgrims applied to everyone else around them and that non-Pilgrim religious freedom of others was a great temptation for their children.
So the Pilgrims left Leiden because of an absolute religious intolerance of everyone else's freedom of religion. They wanted to isolate themselves from all others.
Unlike the Puritans who did not want to leave the Church, but instead wanted to "purify" the Anglican Church, the Pilgrims wanted to separate from the Anglicans altogether.
No King James Pope of England to replace the original Catholic Pope would do. Each man was to be his own Pope.
Since none of us are of the Pilgrim faith, a faith itself not clearly defined, their religion hardly is a reason to us to celebrate a celebration of Pilgrims self-ostracizing themselves from what in America was still largely an Anglican nation.
Easy to get confused as the Puritans landed at Salem ten years later, and quickly overpowered the Pilgrims.
The Puritans, who wanted to purify the Anaglican faith, were a scary lot, as famously exposed in Salem with their witch burnings.
There is of course no such thing as witches, something the Catholic Inquisition never fell for, as they were based on reason and facts. With more than 50,000 senseless witch burnings versus less than 2,000 tried and adjudicated Catholic cases of religious treason against God, there is good reason we use the term "witch-hunt" today.
The faith of the Pilgrims quickly succumbed to Puritan colonies in the Massachusetts bay area.
So the Pilgrim faith itself was not a long lasting success , and therefore, we do not give Thanksgiving to the Pilgrims' religion.
Why? Because the religion of the Pilgrims does not define the American character.
Thanksgiving - but not for political freedom
The Pilgrims were aiming for Virginia, a place already having a governance, but were blown off course and landed in a place with no governance, so they were forced to create their own form of governance - The Mayflower Compact.
You may think we may have celebrated thanksgiving in the Mayflower Compact, being the first agreement of self-governance in America, precursor to our own liberties from the Old World. But we don't.
In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, defender of the Faith, etc.
Having undertaken, for the Glory of God, and advancements of the Christian faith and honor of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents, solemnly and mutually, in the presence of God, and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic; for our better ordering, and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience.
In witness whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names at Cape Cod the 11th of November, in the year of the reign of our Sovereign
In fact, the Mayflower Compact was an agreement to remain loyal subjects of King James and to remain loyal to God. It contains nothing of any further substance than to agree to any laws or government which may be created, whatever those two laws may look like.
If anything, the Mayflower Compact may look a little socialist when creating a government "combining ourselves together"..."for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience".
The perfect definition of socialism -- Submission and obedience required to force everyone together for the "good of the colony."
So again, Why do we not give Thanksgiving to the politics of the Pilgrims? Because it does not reflect the American Character.
Thanksgiving - but not as originally constructed
What we have here it the perfect storm for setting up a communist government.
There were no churches, no homes, no schools, no roads, no forts.
Even more important, there were no fields of grain. In fact, there were no cleared fields at all with no oxen to plow the fields. Tress had to be felled first and stumps removed. The famously stony New England lands had to be cleared of rocks. There were no livestock to speak of; no chickens, no geese, no pigs, no milk cows, no goats, no sheep, no beef cows. No barns for the farm animals, but no hay to put into the barns anyway. There were no wells for water and no facilities to remove "dirty" water.
Winter was setting in and half the founders would lose their lives in the first winter.
All previous settlements were for economic reasons; to find gold, to establish plantations for the King, to find ways to reach China for trade. These settlements were made by hardy young men and well staffed to handle their needs.
The Pilgrims landed to establish a settlement for religious purposes. Hence, they were full families; children, young adults, married adults and old people.
The old in the Old World had already expended their youth in preparing for old age, yet the old in the New World had nothing to show for a lifetime of toil to provide for their old age.
For all these reasons, it was deemed that the Plymouth Plantation would be "all for one and one for all". A Communist commune.
The Old would be taken care of by our first "Social Security" system. The young strong men would build homes for the weak and the old, delaying their own preparations for the harsh New England winter.
To free time for the young men to build everyone's homes, the married woman would clean their cloths and cook them meals.
The young would resent having to take care of the wives and children of older weaker men, over preparing for their own future families and having nothing more to show for his efforts, for his own future.
The wives would object to caring for the young men, considering the washing of their cloths and preparing of their meals to be a kind of slavery, neither would many husbands like their wives attending to young men with the temptations of the young virile men.
The older weaker men would even resent the indignity of being a charge to others, and the disrespect they received from the ones forced to help them.
Unlike all socialist leaders of the modern world, the leaders of Plymouth Plantation were no authoritarians.
They had no stomach to put a gun to a young man's head forcing them to provide for the old, or to force the women to slave for men to which they were not married.
By the spring of 1621 AD, with half the Pilgrims laying in graves, the Governor changed course.
“At length, after much debate of things, the Governor (with the advice of the chiefest amongst them) gave way that they should set corn every man for his own particular, and in that regard trust to themselves; in all things to go on in the general way as before. And so assigned to every family a parcel of land, according to the proportion of their number, for that end, only for present use (but made no division for inheritance) and ranged all boys and youth under some family.”
Governor Bradford had introduced private property and the profit motive into the colony.
“This had very good success,” Bradford explained, “for it made all hands very industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been by any means the Governor or any other could use, and saved him a great deal of trouble, and gave far better content.
The women now went willingly into the field, and took their little ones with them to set corn; which before would allege weakness and inability; whom to have compelled would have been thought great tyranny and oppression.”
The results were an abundance of goods for all.
“The experience that was had in this common course and condition,” Bradford concluded, “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.”
The Thanksgiving we celebrate from the Pilgrims' autumn of 1621 AD festival is the awareness of the power of free enterprise, which has given Amwerica such an abundance and blessing of wealth, comfort and security, over those meager amounts obtained in all the socialist, communist, tyrannical, and King-focused countries of the Old World.
We give Thanksgiving to the creation of America's free enterprise system and the economy it creates.
We give thanks to God for providing this method of obtaining abundance.
Article located at:
Last Hope for America
Christian Libertarian: Harmonious Union
Church and State
Must Read Classics
"Checks and Balances"
History of the World
The Christian Solution © First Release: March 15, 2008