On this Thanksgiving, 2017, let us give thanks but let us also remember what it means to give thanks and what doing so requires.
Let us be thankful for our freedom but let us remember that this was freedom was not given to us but was gained through the efforts of many who came before us and will only remain if we work to maintain freedom. And just because we may feel we are free, we must realize that others do not share in that freedom, and until that day that all are free, no one is free.
Our freedom can never come at the expense at others but in conjunction with others.
Let us be thankful that we have the right to be independent, to think for ourselves and develop our own ideas. Our individual and collective freedom is a product of our ability to be independent and free thinkers.
And with this most important individual right comes the realization that we cannot think for others nor can we let others think for us. We must work together to foster an environment that allows independent and free thought.
Let us be thankful that we have the right to believe as we wish. But we also must also realize that our right to believe as we wish can never prevent others from believing as they wish to believe. Our own right to believe does not allow us to dictate how others will believe nor can we let others tell us what to believe.
Ultimately, we can give thanks for freedom in many different ways but we must also realize that freedom is the outcome of the ability to independently think and believe while realizing that implementation of only one set of beliefs in the framework of a single mindset does not bring us freedom.