Cumberland Times-News

November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving

Americans don’t call it that for nothing


Cumberland Times-News

— For most of us (those who must prepare for a houseful of guests being an exception), Thanksgiving is a day in which to rest, relax and be happy, and a time to at least think of home — if we aren’t able to go there.

AAA estimates that more than 43 million people will travel at least 50 miles for Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving may be the time of year when Americans most return to their roots — family and friends, and the places where they grew up.

Most of us do have at least something for which to be thankful. We don’t call it Thanksgiving for nothing.

For all that, too many people are faced with problems that may seem unsurmountable — they are out of work, they are confronted with crippling debt (a situation the nation’s government also faces), their homes and workplaces have been devastated by fire and storm, or they (or someone close to them) are suffering a debilitating disease, maybe a disease from which there is little or no hope for recovery.

None of that is meant to cast gloom upon your holiday; we hope that you and yours are doing well, and that your Thanksgiving leaves you filled with warm memories. Most of us, when we think about it, do have much for which to be thankful.

It’s simply a reminder that for too many people, life isn’t as good as it might be. We particularly salute those in the Salvation Army or the Union Rescue Mission in Cumberland, which are staffed by people who have devoted their lives to helping those who need it — the same mission hat has been adopted by many of our churches and private organizations.

And let’s not forget those who serve in our armed forces. They may be lining up for a big Thanksgiving dinner, wherever they are, but they are still on duty, far from home and their family of bloodline. Those with whom they serve are family of a different kind ... and maybe even closer.

Have a happy Thanksgiving and, if you can, help somebody else who might not otherwise have one to do the same.