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Happy Thanksgiving? Has Anybody Asked the Turkey About That?

Between Alexander Hamilton’s proclamation that “No citizen of the United States should refrain from turkey on Thanksgiving Day,” and English author, Charles Mackay of Life and Liberty in America fame, declaring the big bird “the great event of the day,” the turkey hasn’t been able to catch a break in over 150 years.
ben franklinOf course, around this time of year, we should all find something to be thankful for, even the turkey. And the first thing that comes to mind is that Tom should be glad this kind of foul behavior toward fowls only happens once a year. It could be worse — we could be out shopping for them in droves every day. Even hunters are limited to a season. What more could a turkey want, right?
But, it’s probably a given that being the centerpiece for a ravenous assemblage of relatives who appear to not have eaten since the last time they all gathered for the feast, would continue to upset turkeys everywhere. Go figure.
If speculation is permitted; how does a turkey really feel about being the main course on Thanksgiving?
From a turkey’s perspective there must be many reasons Thanksgiving, for lack of a better phrase, ruffles its feathers. Imagine the degradation of being placed prone on your nether regions, legs tucked around your inert body, and then stuffed unmercifully with corn bread and other paraphernalia. It has to be the worst possible way to be remembered before you’re plunged into a burning hot oven.
angry-turkey-300x289OK, nevermind, the bird has already seen the bright light and been plucked and processed. Semantics, right?
And wasn’t it rumored that Benjamin Franklin lobbied for the turkey to be our national bird? Well, that part is true: it was rumored, but he never actually lobbied for it. Instead, Ben simply wrote in a letter to his daughter that since the bald eagle looked so much like a turkey anyway, we might as well have the turkey as our communal bird.
But he did believe the turkey was much more respectable than our national symbol, what with the eagle’s bad moral character and all. And if the turkey was good enough for Ben, well…anyway, it could be a valuable argument.
Maybe if the noble turkey had signed some sort of legal document when all this started hundreds of years ago, we could all feel validated over our mass consumption of them at the holiday meal. You know, something like a formal Pilgramatic Proclamation stating that once a year turkeys agreed to become the bird-of-choice for humans if we reciprocated by giving them chickens to be at their beck and call the rest of the year.
But as that didn’t happen, we’ll have to content ourselves with the fact that turkeys aren’t the only ones with a mapped-out destiny. Christmas is right around the corner and ham’s time is coming.
Happy Thanksgiving!
Angela Rogalski is a HottyToddy.com staff reporter and can be reached at angela.rogalski@hottytoddy.com.

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