Being Thankful in Louisiana

by Bob Forward

My cup is full! We arrive at another Thanksgiving, counting our blessings. America still represents the broadest spectrum of free people who can voice themselves in the broadest range without fear of persecution on the face of the earth. Citizens participate in educational opportunities, religious celebrations and business ventures that in many countries would be banned. Yet, we have not realized our potential.

We are restrained by laws and courts from activities that are often ruled extreme of otherwise unacceptable, but we generally “negotiate” and find some common ground, or at least we did in the past. More than anything we only restrained by ourselves.

Conflict today is measured by ultimatums, that previous generations managed to work through. Power in the hands of governments as well as in the seemingly fluid movements of the streets and parks is managed by a few who often work out the end-game and manipulate the masses toward a narrow goal. Only when we arrive at the impasse or confrontation do “we the people” see how we have been herded.
On this day of Thanksgiving it is ironic that we examine the full glass each year and analyze its content.

We recently concluded another season of elections; some good, some bad decisions were made. The blessing of the “Freedom to Vote” seemed to be ignored by over 75% of our citizens.

We have turkeys, rice, and oysters for dressing, yet record sickness and even death is traced to the chemicals in our oyster harvest, partially linked to the BP disaster.

We have record profits in many companies, the new bounty of natural gas below our feet yet unemployment and record deficits face our next legislature.

So many opportunities in the State blessed with so much and still so far to go. So our wish this Thanksgiving is that “We the People” (that’s ALL the people) will recommit to diminish the ultimatums, sit down together, and work toward resolving issues that appear to hold us back.

Citizens who commit to work can find common ground that benefits all. Our full glass may not be full of potable water, but the opportunity of America is still there to clean it up.

Happy Thanksgiving to all – Geaux Tigers!