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tv   Washington Journal 11252021  CSPAN  November 25, 2021 7:01am-10:02am EST

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mountain or pacific time zones, (202) 748-8001. you can also send us a text, that number, (202) 748-8003. please include your name and where you are from. otherwise, catch up with us on social media. twitter, @cspanwj. facebook.com/cspan. a very good thursday morning, thanksgiving. we are beginning with yesterday's verdict in the murder trial for the killing of ahmaud arbery. here is the headline from the atlanta journal-constitution, jury finds three men guilty of murder in arbery's killing. pictures online showing those three men, william bryan, gregory mcmichael, and his son travis mcmichael come all found guilty on 23 of 27 counts, including malice, murder, felony
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murder, aggravated assault, multiple cases of assault, false imprisonment, and criminal intent to commit a felony. all men found guilty on the charges of murder, and it was travis mcmichael, the younger mcmichael, found guilty of malice and murder. we will go through those charges and reaction on capitol hill. mostly, we want to hear from you this morning. (202) 748-8000 is the number if you live in the eastern or central time zones. (202) 748-8001 if you live in the mountain or pacific time zones. reaction from just outside the courtroom yesterday, here is ahmaud arbery's father, who had this to say after the convictions were announced. [video clip] >> all lives matter, not just blacks. we don't want to see nobody go through this. i don't want to see no daddy
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watch his kid get lynched and shot down like that. so it is all our problem, all our problem. so hey, let's keep fighting and keep doing it and making this a better place for all human beings, all human beings, everybody. love everybody. all human beings need to be treated equally. we are going to conquer this lynching. today is a good day. >> amen. host: ahmaud arbery's father yesterday. he was removed from the courtroom after the first guilty verdict was announced yesterday for his reaction inside the courtroom. the judge removing him, having him removed from the courtroom. you saw his statement after the verdicts were announced. this is president biden's statement yesterday, ahmaud arbery's killing witnessed by the world on video is a
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devastating reminder of how far we have to go in the fight for racial justice in this country. mr. arbery should be here today, the president said, celebrating the holidays with his mother and his father. nothing can bring him back to his family and community, but the verdict ensures that those who committed this horrible crime will be punished. while the guilty verdicts reflect our justice system doing its job, that alone is not enough. he said we must recommit ourselves to building a future of unity and shared strength were no one fears violence because of the color of their skin. my administration will continue to do hard work to ensure that equal justice under law is not just a phrase emblazoned in stone about the supreme court but reality for all americans. the president with his statement yesterday. we want to hear your thoughts this morning, spending this first hour this thanksgiving morning getting your reaction to those murder convictions. jerry out of detroit, michigan,
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good morning to you. caller: good morning, and greetings yet again from motown. i think this verdict against these three racists who murdered ahmaud arbery sends a clear message to every white racist out there that they cannot continue to get away with this, continue to beat and kill us, and get away with it. so i think a message has been shot out regarding that. i would also like to say that until this case, we have seen racist white men continue to get away with murder, whether in the form of white racist police officers or self-styled vigilantes like these guys and also kyle rittenhouse. they have been given carte
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blanche because of the political climate created, especially by the previous administration. i think after i get off, i will be trashed by a lot of racist whites on the republican line trying to defend these three men and make excuses for them and blame the victims for their own deaths. host: do you think the justice system is working in this country? caller: in some cases, it does. it worked for this case, but i do not think it will work for others, because i question whether or not there is indeed such a thing as equal justice when it comes to either black people or white people. and white people are usually given the benefit of the doubt, because they want to paint a picture of the sort of evil, violent black man, and i think
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that is a lot of the attitude, a lot of racist white people on the republican line, you know, have of us. they feel they should get away with it and always blamed the victim for their own deaths. host: this is ron in michigan, as well. good morning. caller: good morning. i never thought that they would get the conviction, number one, because of the cover-up and the woman who will be prosecuted for it. but it was good that it was a predominantly white jury that convicted them in the heart of the south. it shows that there still is hope in this country for racial healing and bringing together, but what it also showed was an unarmed black man could stand up to three heavily armed white supremacist hunting death squad and, in his death, bring them down and send them to prison, which is going to be hell if
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they ever make it to prison. but it just shows that there is hope in this country, hopefully, that we can live together and learn to love together and learn to have justice together. and everybody have a peaceful thanksgiving. try and be peaceful. host: the jury included 11 white jurors who deliberated for about 10 hours before returning those convictions, 23 out of 27 churches found -- charges found guilty, including felony murder convictions. jay is next out of north carolina. caller: good morning. i feel absolutely horrible for what happened to ahmaud arbery, should have never happened. but i am confused by something. why does the fuhrer always have to butt in with his two cents? joe biden is the most racist man on the planet but always has
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something to say, doesn't he? why don't y'all talk about the black supremacist who ran over people at the christmas parade, and i say black supremacist because that is what he called himself. a black militant this is all the white people should die. i guess that is too much to ask the white media in this country because you have already forgot about the little baby that was murdered by this black supremacist. in the middle, you think white people, you're the idiot. host: do you think justice is working in this country? caller: yeah, i think it is working if you are black. if you are black, you are entitled. if you are white, you are the enemy, a white supremacist. in the media's own words, if you are white, if you sit down and nancy pelosi's desk, you are a terrorist. if you are black or you murder
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police or murder people on the streets on camera or you rape women on trains or you push people in front of trains, which happens every single day, then you are a good person. host: jay in north carolina. bob in brentwood, maryland, you are next. caller: good morning, c-span, and thank you for letting me comment. hey, i do not want to be on the wrong side of this, but i never believed he was jogging. and i could not believe that the prosecution said that he was jogging. clearly, he stopped. joggers don't do that. from the footage that i saw, he was in that building. now, they should not have did that. you fight, you going to commit a citizen -- it is three of y'all,
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you get him down to the ground. as an african-american man, people are not going to understand this, but this is the time that we live in. i am not going to go in south georgia in certain neighborhoods if i do not live down there, but i know he was casing the place, and that was his intent. i always wondered -- host: do you think he was murdered? do you agree with the jury that found he was murdered? caller: they could have shot one in the hand. they shouldn't have did that. i am a property owner. we know that people steal and case all the time, and burglary happens all the time. and another thing, this is what zimmerman should have got. that young man, nah, he wasn't jogging, and i am never going to believe it. and the parents know that their
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son was not a good kid. host: speaking of ahmaud arbery's parents, we showed you his father outside the courtroom. this was the comments from wanda cooper-jones, ahmaud arbery's mother, just after the convictions were announced. [video clip] >> it has been a long fight, a hard fight, but god is good. early in, i never thought -- to tell you the truth, i never saw this day back in 2020. i never thought this day would come. but god is good. and i just want to tell everybody thank you. thank you for those who marched, those who parade -- most of all, the ones who prayed. thank you, god. thank you. now quez, which you know him as ahmad, i know him as quez, he will now rest in peace. host: wanda cooper-jones, ahmaud
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arbery's mother, outside of the courtroom yesterday after the convictions were announced. we are getting your reaction this morning to those convictions, the murder convictions in the killing of ahmaud arbery back in february 2020. phone lines, (202) 748-8000 in the eastern or central time zones. (202) 748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. i promise you, we will let you know some reaction from capitol hill as the case got national attention over the past year. this is a few tweets from members of congress, including congressman federico wilson saying yesterday, finding the murderers of a modern greek -- ahmaud arbery guilty helps me reconcile the not guilty verdict of george zimmerman in the trayvon martin case. we still have a long way to go. democratic congresswoman from south florida. barbara lee of california saying nothing will lessen the pain of
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his murder, but today is a step towards justice for his family, hearing the guilty verdict brought tears from my eyes. injustice against black people is the norm. we have much work ahead, but today offered a glimmer of hope. a democrat from hawaii saying, jerry confirmed what we all knew, ahmaud arbery was targeted, attacked, and killed because of the color of his skin, and it should not have taken weeks of protests for charges to be brought against his murderers. justice was served, but it does not bring ahmad back. debbie wasserman schultz saying, for this young man's family, i pray it brings some solace and peace in their heartbreaking loss, and i hope the verdict reminds all americans, especially the african-american community, that while we still have much work to do, justice is still attainable. may ahmaud arbery's memory be a blessing. statements from republican members of congress, betty carter of southeast georgia's first district saying that the
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right to a trial by jury of your peers is fundamental to a free and fair society. justice was served today, and i think the jury and judge in the legal counsel for their commitment to our orderly system of justice. i pray for the family of ahmaud arbery. i hope this verdict brings some much-needed comfort ahead of the holiday season. from senator ted cruz, republican of texas, saying, we can again take pride in our criminal justice system for delivering justice based on the facts presented in a court of law. the end of it -- the evidence demonstrated that the three defendants followed, salted, falsely imprisoned, and tragically murdered mr. arbery. senator cruz saying he and his wife will continue praying for the families and loved ones hoping they find some level of comfort in this just verdict. a few comments from members of congress. we mostly wants to hear from you, your reaction to those convictions announced yesterday in the georgia courtroom.
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shirley in columbia, missouri, you are next. caller: good morning. yes, can you hear me? host: yes, go ahead. caller: yes, i think justice was served for this young man. and that caller from maryland should be ashamed of himself or saying he was not jogging. he should be ashamed of himself. as far as ted cruz, we do not need his sympathy. he is not for us, no way. he is for the white supremacists and for donald trump. he is on tv with donald trump with thumbs up. he should have been thrown straight into jail. it does not matter what color your skin, death is death. host: i asked the same question a couple callers back this morning. do you think the justice system works in this country? caller: no.
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for some, it does. for blacks, it don't. over 400-something years in this country, and ain't nothing changed yet. showboat for the white people who try to get us locked up and throw away with the key. i am not a white supremacist. i am not a racist. but some of these white people should be thrown to the dogs. host: a couple calls bringing up the rittenhouse not guilty verdict from just last week. we showed you president biden's statement about the guilty verdicts in the murder trial of those who killed ahmaud arbery. this is what the president said last week about the jury's decision in the rittenhouse case , saying that the not guilty verdicts believe many americans feeling angry and concerned, my song -- myself included, he said, but he added that the
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jury's decision must be acknowledged. i stand by what the jury concluded, he told reporters about the rittenhouse case, the jury system works and we have to abide by it. that is what the president said following the rittenhouse not guilty verdicts. james in grand forks, north dakota, good morning. caller: hey, jon. happy thanksgiving to you. host: same to you. caller: i do not like to be drawn into this stuff, but i got to comment. i have to be devils advocate sometimes, a blue-eyed devil. i find this -- first of all, i seen a picture of those three guys that are convicted, and i am glad they're convicted. they look like a couple of scumbags. that stuff happens every day, no doubt about it. but then, as i often bring up on this show, are black people going to actually play this card here and act as if white people
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are really roaming the streets hunting them down? i mean, come on. when you look at racial crime statistics, fbi stats, national crime victim surveys, c-span's archives, jared taylor and other people who have been on your show talking about them, people like heather mcdonald, it is about, on average, about 80% of interracial violence on this country every year is black on white. we all know that, don't we? we do, right? we do know that, right? host: the same question we have been asking, does the justice system work in this country? caller: yeah, of course it does, i guess it does. i'm wondering why joe biden did not apologize to mr. rittenhouse for calling him a white supremacist a year ago in an interview, and he killed a couple of other white scumbags. one of the guys had just gotten
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out of prison for child molestation. i do not think he should have -- he was defending himself. he killed, but these guys they kill this arbery guy, i'm glad they're convicted. but statistics do not really pan out. you know, black people are acting as if it is 1954 and the klan is riding through the streets. host: you mentioned the conviction, the three men, travis mcmichael, william bryan, gregory mcmichael, their time before a judge and jury is not over yet. several authorities set to charge them with hate crimes, and those trials are still to come. so we will see them back in court down the road. this is richard out of durham, north carolina. good morning. caller: yes, i want to make a suggestion to improve "washington journal." host: always open to
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suggestions, richard. what do you think? caller: why not have an evening show to allow everyone working in the morning in the daytime to have a chance to practice this democracy? most of the people that call are elderly people. why not give us that have to work during the day a chance to participate? host: i appreciate that, richard. i will mention it to my boss. we have occasionally done evening shows. right at the beginning of coronavirus, we had a "washington journal" primetime program with all the news happening around the beginning of the pandemic, for several months. it is not something we have not done before, might be something we do again. thanks for the suggestion. do you want to talk about the verdicts? caller: first of all, i believe
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that the executive branch, through the cia, are preventing a race war. what do you think? host: why do you think that conspiracy theory is something the cia would want? why would the government want that? caller: well, once you have a people that have very little military, political, or economic power, you can easily control them. host: this is al in medfield, massachusetts. good morning. caller: hi, how you doing? host: doing all right. caller: can i ask you a question? host: sure, do not know if i can answer it, but go ahead. caller: you are a democrat, right? host: no, al, the idea of trying to figure out what the hosts on this program are and aren't, is
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sort of distracts from the callers. that is why it is something we do not really talk about, because this whole show is to focus on you and your phone calls. do you want to talk about the case? caller: no, i got another comment. host: you don't want to talk about the case? talk about the case because that is what we're talking about this morning. john in pennsylvania, you are next. caller: yeah, thanks for having me on. try not to cut me off, like you always do, jon, will you, please? i thought a couple callers back, it was appalling letting that man say we should throw white people in jail and all those things. it has nothing to do with race. it has to do with the law, just like in the kyle rittenhouse case. joe biden telling everybody this kid is a white supremacist. joe biden is a loser. let me tell you this right now, ok, these two people broke the
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law, and the law works and found justice. in philadelphia, you have 499 murders, and a pregnant woman was just killed he was taking packages out of the trunk of her car, ok, and they ain't even found them -- they do not care. they only care when white people kill black people. do you understand? host: more from the reaction outside the courtroom yesterday after those verdicts were announced. this was the rev. al sharpton, who had been attending vigils outside the courtroom during the trial and made appearances inside the courtroom, as well. this is rev. al sharpton from yesterday. [video clip] >> and let the word go forth all over the world that a jury of 11 whites and one black in the deep south were in the courtroom and
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said that black lives do matter. let it be clear that most 10 years after trayvon, god used wanda and marcus' son to prove that if we kept marching and kept fighting, we would make you hear us. we have got a lot more battles to fight, but this was an important battle today. this was proving that our children know their value, and that is why those people that marched -- i am talking about the people here, that was here when nobody else was here, they stood up -- brunswick, georgia, will go down in history as the place that criminal justice took a different turn. host: that was the rev. al
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sharpton yesterday outside the georgia courtroom. this is michael in stamford, connecticut. good morning. caller: hey, good morning. i have a couple comments. one is the case, those three guys, the one who videotaped it, he must have had a bad lawyer. how did he get thrown into jail for murder? he got the evidence to put those two away. if there is any appeal for that guy, i think he may have a chance to get off on that because he is the one who had the evidence. if it was not for him, none of this would've been around. and there was a, darlie or about the justice system working or not -- and another thing, you made a comment about the justice system working or not. if it did work, wouldn't donald trump be in jail for assaulting 60, 70 women? he says they all lied. they all lie. how many times did he lie while president, 10,000, 12,000?
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host: you talk about the charges against these three men. william bryan was the one who filmed the final moments of ahmaud arbery's life, found guilty on three counts of felony murder and three other churches, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, and criminal attempt to commit a felony. gregory mcmichael, travis mcmichael's father, was found not guilty of malice murder but ill to have all of the other county faced, the other eight counts, including felony murder counts. then travis mcmichael, the one who ended up shooting ahmaud arbery, was found guilty on all nine counts that he faced, including the most serious charge, malice murder and felony murder. kathy in bonaire, georgia, your next. caller: good morning. happy thanksgiving, everyone. hey, living in georgia, this
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case has just touched all of us very deeply. and because of this murder and how they chased and corralled ahmaud arbery, georgia has now changed two major laws. the first change is the repeal of the civil war era citizens arrest. no longer broad. it is very narrow now. second, georgia now has a hate crime law. georgia cannot go after these three men for a hate crime, but these three boys are facing federal hate crime. and because they have been convicted, i guarantee they will be convicted on federal hate crime law. and if they think prison is going to be hard enough with the prison population knowing what they did to ahmaud arbery, wait
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until the prison population finds out they have been convicted of hate crime. this was a horrific thing these men did, and i am so thankful justice is being served and they will spend the rest of their racist lives in prison. p.s., this is libby jane, y'all. i love y'all. happy thanksgiving. host: kathy lee georgia, or libby jane on her twiddle handle. there is some folks that follow and speak about us nearly every day, libby jane one of those folks. @cspanwj if you want to follow along with that conversation. that happens every day in that that social media space. following up on her comments, the defense lawyers relying in this case on citizens arrest law in georgia that was enacted in the 19th century. the christian science monitor picked up on those laws in states and what is happening with them, and kathy talked a
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little bit about it. the courts dealing with the ramifications of violence in the name of protecting others, but the issue coming to a head when it comes to elected officials dealing with this. georgia quickly narrowed its citizens arrest law to allow only shopkeepers to detain suspected shoplifters. the republican governor said the old law could be used to justify rogue vigilantism. whether other states will follow suit, and clear. south carolina's law suggests citizens in the cover of darkness can capture citizens a suspect of wrongdoing. that was written back in the 1860's. legacy of citizens arrest laws in the united states in the christian science monitor. rick, westminster, colorado, good morning. caller: good morning. host: go ahead. caller: i think that justice was served in both of these cases
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this last week. you know, for the one kid, he was just defending himself. these other fellows, i do not know why they did not just dial 911. you have a problem in your neighborhood, that is what our police or for. host: rick, with all of these cases happening at the same time, and there is maybe a third case in the mix, the civil case against a dozen white supremacists that marched in 2017 rally in charlottesville found guilty in civil court, liable for some $25 million in damages, that conviction, earlier this week, back on tuesday. i wonder your thoughts on all these cases happening at the same time and the conversation around our justice system in this country, has it been a good conversation to have this week? is it something that is creating a reckoning on this issue? caller: well, sort of.
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i think people understand that black people feel like they have been taken advantage of. but for the average guy, like myself and my friends, my family, you know, we try and do right by all people. when you ask, is the justice system working, it works for certain individuals. if you have enough money or enough power, you are not going to see the system like, say, myself or some average black fellow. so yeah, things are bad in our country, but the average human being, the average citizen of this country, are trying to do the right thing, the majority. host: that is rick in colorado. mark out of northwood, new hampshire, good morning. caller: hey, good morning. i am pretty much in agreement with most of the callers. these three men should have been charged and will be convicted and sent to prison, like they should be. my biggest problem is the promotion of al sharpton. he is one of the most racist
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black people we have ever seen, and to be called the moral voice of the democratic party just drives me crazy. this man, we need to do a little bit of history on al sharpton, where he came from, what he di , to his anti-police and antiwhite rhetoric, he is the worst person to be seeing up there. until i saw al sharpton this morning, i had nothing to say and was in agreement with everything. but he muddies the water terribly. host: do you think any party has a moral voice? is there someone you would point to as the moral voice of either party in this country? caller: no, there is no moral voice to any party in this country right now, absolutely not. and the current state of affairs shows that. there is no moral voice.
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there are no morals in america anymore. we would not be having the riots and the problems we are having if people were a little bit more moral. come on. host: do you think one side does it better than the other? caller: no, no. as a white man in america who has traveled the country, worked with different ethnic groups all over the place, texas, california, florida, new hampshire, new york, i have traveled the country as a painter and a mechanic and have worked with all different levels of financial and racial people. an honest, hard-working person in this country has no problem advancing, if they are honest and hard-working. that is all it takes. host: how long have you been traveling the country, mark? doing that work? caller: from 1969, when i got out of high school, went into the service, traveled my country until i was in my 30's, before i
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finally got married and settled down. but the point is, i have worked construction, worked motorcycle business, have worked everywhere and had multiple different jobs, and it all comes down to the same thing, if you are a moral, intelligent, educated person, life is good. if you want handouts and want to be an ass, then you get what you deserve. i don't care what color or ethnic group you are. america is the greatest place if you work for it. host: a lot of people say that things are as bad as they have ever been, pointing to politics, political divide, racial divide in this country. take me back to 1969 -- i was not alive then -- is it better today than it was in the late 1960's in this country? how would you compare? caller: i would say on some cases, it is better, and in
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some, it is worse. the media definitely does not help us out the mainstream media with its inflammatory headlines and its jump and rush to decisions and opinions, it muddies the water of the people. we don't get the full truth on both sides. we never do, never have. in 1969, i went into the service. i have not trusted my government ever since the kennedy assassination which, unfortunately, again, is before your time, but i have not trusted the mainstream government since then. host: with the media -- was the media giving the full story back in the late 1960's, 1970's question what did you trust the media more back then? caller: no, i do not trust the mainstream media to give honest sides of the story.
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years back, 20/20, the tv show, was supposed to be a bipartisan show that give you 20 minutes of one side, 20 minutes of the other side, and then 20 minutes to fill out the hour with conversation about the opinion of each site. now that show is nothing but a -- i do not even know what it is, have not watched it in years, just an inflammatory murder series. even "60 minutes" does not give both sides of a story like they used to, way back in the beginning. no, i have no faith in the mainstream media, and it does not matter which side of the coin you belong on or feel like you belong to. without the full, unadulterated truth, we are not getting all the information. host: so you do not trust mainstream media appeared where do you go for your news? it is a question we often ask of people critical about the media, whether mainstream or not. what sources do you trust? caller: i trust my gut.
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host: what do you read on a daily basis? caller: nothing. to be honest, i watch your show every morning. because i had the luxury, as one caller just asked about doing a primetime show, i'm retired now so have the luxury to sit and drink my coffee and watch her show. and i have to be honest and say half the time i turn you guys off because the direction of the questioning and/or the crazy answers that people call in with, the comments. it just turns me off, so i turned it off. i watch a little bit of c-span, a little bit of fox, watch my local news every night at 6:00. but all i want out of my local news is local news. i want to know what is going on in my state of new hampshire. i really don't care about the rest of the country because i do not live there anymore.
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i have to deal with my family, my home, my town. but now there is this big push about -- i know i am changing the subject, but the big push for electric cars and everything. what is happening in california today? thanksgiving day, they are shutting the power off for people. what is happening in this country today? there is such a division because of the media and the way things are portrayed unfairly on both sides. it is just disheartening. host: appreciate the call. thanks for talking about it. happy thanksgiving to you and your family. caller: same to you, and thanks for letting me on salon. host: jonathan in canton, ohio, your next. caller: good morning. happy thanksgiving. it is a beautiful day in the neighborhood. like mr. rogers would say. it is disturbing to me, in my viewpoint, how the disparities
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of the viewpoints of your callers are. the core of the whole thing is about injustice. so if we can't verbalize with the real injustice is against african-americans, how would they allow rittenhouse to go across state lines with an ak-47 and kill somebody and talk about the people who got killed and judge them what they were? it is nobody's judgment call to talk about what they were, if they were pedophiles, molesters -- that is not nobody's business. it is disturbing how people want to judge. that is why the judge said we cannot call them victims because of their background. and i just don't understand
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where these discussions are going. it is really not going to the point of the fact of the matter of what really is going on. host: that is jonathan in ohio. comments from social media this morning. this is dave on twitter, i personally think this country has more of a vigilante problem than a racial problem. there is a subset of gun owners that fancy themselves heroes. this from john on twitter, my reaction is the system worked because there was video that caused protests and forced reluctant officials to act after months of an action. that never would have happened without a video. thanks for the video. thanks for the verdict. this one says the jury brought about accountability, something that has been lacking for quite some time. we still have to bring about reforms by voting people and office that will do the job. but now the arbery family while closure.
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this is rene in pennsylvania, good morning. caller: hi, good morning. happy thanksgiving. i feel sometimes it works, the system, sometimes. and there was a time in america where it did not work for certain people more, more. today it has gotten a little better. but also, there is another situation, class and money. sometimes when people do crimes and they have money or a certain position, sometimes they do seem to get away a little bit. but the thing that disturbs me with these two cases that are more recent, the rittenhouse vigilante people, they are coming out. the former president did mention tell people at one point, you can hit this person, you can do
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this, do that, say this. and people started coming out, you know. i have been in a parking lot at a grocery store a couple times and some strange things said to me. and people just started saying and doing things. that is very dangerous. these things -- if you want to become involved, he could have came with his friends, called the police, addressed the police out there to different situations or something. or if a group of them stood there and held hands or made a line in front of the businesses or something. but when you go out with a gun and you have a gun, usually, like i told my stepson one time, when you have a gun with you, something is going to happen and you're going to end up using it, and it is not going to go well. i mean, police officers, sometimes there are mistakes, and they are trained.
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and sometimes are mistakes with them. when individuals start using guns and going around and thinking they can be the law and all that, it does not work well. i just do not think it works well. that is how i look at both of these cases come in a way. host: you talked about your nephew, i think? how old is your nephew? caller: he is 40, in jail since he was 20, but i told him this when he was in his teens. i told him this in his teens. i heard him one time speaking about having this gun, and i come from a family of older people, older people when i was a kid who hunted. my grandparents would use guns, rifles, my great aunt, that is what those folks did. but when i came up as a child, and i was from the city, i did not touch anybody's gun. host: if you do not not -- mind
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me asking, did he go to jail on a gun conviction? caller: yes, yes. and he was warned, and i had that conversation and told him, once you have something like that on you, you know, something happens and you think first you will use that against the other person or whatever, and that is exec the what happened. host: have you ever talked to him since going to jail about that original conversation, that warning you gave him back 20 years ago? caller: yes, yes, yes. yes, he has a lot of regret and different things. yes, he understood what i was trying to do for him. i was trying to make sure he had some type of education or trade or something. education first, then some type of trade or something. that would've been more for him, appropriate for him. host: how much longer does he have in jail? caller: he is never getting out,
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never. never. host: thanks for sharing your story. jack in el paso, texas. good morning. caller: good morning, sir. happy thanksgiving to all americans. just want to say one thing. i agree with the previous callers, that one little thing, something has really been forgotten in this country, is the fact that last year in detroit, chicago, new york, atlanta, there were over 50,000 murders in the black community. and i did not see rev. al sharpton out there for one of them. today there are 16 kids being
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buried in black communities, 16 kids, i just seen on the internet, and not al sharpton or anyone has said a word about it. the black community has got to do something, it seems to me, to get control of the situation. they are killed or running drugs, looting stores, as we seen yesterday on television, with sledgehammers, knocking out windows and cases, and dozens and dozens of kids think it is ok. host: what do you think of this case that we're talking about and what it means for whether the just and -- justice system works in this country? caller: excuse me, i just have a cat who had nine kittens last night. [laughs] i am up to my ears and kitties.
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i think justice was served, but one little thing here, they were patrolling their own neighborhood, just trying to make sure that a crime did not occur. that does not give them the right to go out and apprehend anybody and have that happen. i think justice was served, yes. host: lambert is out of brooklyn, good morning. caller: very good morning. i do not get so emotional over an incident like that, maybe because of my background. you asked the question, is justice served? how do you view the law as the standard of justice? did someone violate the law? if you are carrying a gun, you do not know whether or not or when you will use it, therefore, if you are about to use that
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gun, you must ask yourself if the law justifies it, does the law say i can do this? that is what you have to do. therefore, these men carrying guns, it is whether or not they're using of the gun was justified. through accident or whatever, it should have never happened. therefore, it is not based upon individual. could have been whiter could have been any other people -- could have been white or could have been in other people. it is whether or not it was justified. he is not a cop. call the cop and let the cop to the work. the cop can find out where this guy is running to and let him go his way. but with their egotism, they are there. that violates the law, not just killing somebody, violates the law.
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and it is justifiable to put someone in jail that violates the law, the consequence, that the court says this is what you pay when you violate this law. so you know, that is how it goes. host: now they are facing life in prison in the wake of the convictions on felony murder charges. mike in bessemer city, north carolina, good morning. caller: good morning, and happy thanksgiving. happy thanksgiving to all americans out there. i think this case is proof -- proof was in the video, but i do not much agree with it because the arbery attacked travis mcmichael. that has been seen. but the false imprisonment, that there is a different story. a previous caller, where
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rittenhouse came across state lines with the gun, even cnn said the gun was already in wisconsin and rittenhouse's dad worked in wisconsin. and it is not a right story. everything evolves around race. everybody says rittenhouse is a white supremacist in a militia, and the three guys shot, one was a five-time little boy rapist. and in this case that the guy went through the christmas parade, on facebook he is blm supporter and posted on their about running over white people. now i wonder if they will consider federal hate crime charges against him. host: howard in melville, new york, your next. caller: greetings, and thank you very much.
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i think it is the mentality that we have to change. even the people who are thinking he should have just called the cops. why do you call the cops on black people? if a man is walking through a neighborhood jogging through a neighborhood, leave him alone. it is this mentality and disrespect in their estimation of black people's value that is the problem. you have a white man walking through the bronx or any black neighborhood, you know what people would say, hey, interesting that white men just walking to the neighborhood, but no one is going to roll up on him and do him any harm, that is not the mentality. so the mentality is what has to change. for the callers talking about chicago and black on black crime, for millennia's, human beings have been killing the people they live next to. eskimos killing the eskimos. in the dark ages, we kill people in europe we lived next to. so this argument about, ooh, i care about the black people in
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chicago, we can stop that argument because people kill who they live next to, not just black on black or white on white or chinese on chinese. that is who we are. the mentality has to change overall to respect that people as the people who have a great history, not just 300 years but thousands and thousands of years. host: there is just a view minutes left in this first segment of "washington journal." we're just asking you for your reaction to yesterday's convictions in the murder of ahmaud arbery. taking your phone lines. for (202) 748-8000 for eastern and central time zones. (202) 748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. just a few more minutes left on this conversation on this thanksgiving morning. sai is in scottsdale, arizona. caller: good morning. happy thanksgiving. in terms of the problem in the
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murder trial, i think justice was served and the information was out there. i think we live in a country of such division, and i think c-span brings a refreshing view that i can listen to people on both sides, even if i disagree with them. the big problem today with this mountain of disinformation, what are you going to do? if we do not come together and try to talk things out, and right now our leadership and all the way down are not talking things out. thank you. host: this is anna, de soto, texas. caller: good morning, and happy thanksgiving to america. the problem -- i was shocked, really, that it was an 11 member jury, one black.
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i am not going to live, i was shocked. like, ok, kyle rittenhouse, the same thing. so i want to apologize first to those jurors. one thing that we -- and i am talking about myself as a black community, we have a neighborhood association, and when we see things that don't look right, we call the nonemergency line or the police. we are not the police and do not take it into our hands. we have had a few problems, and the police have solved the problems. so we keep our neighborhood and watch the children. but there is one thing we do not do. we can complain all day, but until you vote for your mayor, your governor, your state senator, your state representative, your district attorney, these are the crucial -- because they hire the police.
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my grandson is a policeman, and when he takes off his uniform, he becomes a black man, a black male. but we have always taught our grandchildren and our children -- i have three sons and eight grandsons, and yes, i do have to give -- we have to give them the speech of what you should do because things that happen to white kids do not necessarily happen, do not turn out good for us. but until we do that, until we go out and vote, half of the people in the united states do not know who their u.s. senator is, their u.s. congressman, do not even know it. and then we complain. but until you go to the polls and vote -- and i think after every meeting that reverend al or anybody else has to say, this
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comes to us because we do not go out and vote. jon, we have 35,000 people register to vote last year. only 4000 voted, that's it, and that is shameful. host: you started by saying you need to apologize to those jurors. can you follow-up a little bit on why you felt like you needed to say that? caller: because i did not trust them. and let's be honest, i didn't. i am like, ok, what happened in wisconsin is probably going to happen in georgia, these men are going to get off. now what i feel like is that the youngest one, travis -- i think that is his name -- had a 10-year-old, and when he was saying that he was struggling with the youngest on arbery that
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he thought about his son, well, that mother thinks about her son also. but then we have to realize how many people standing in those crowds are registered to vote. the negative -- host: the question we have been asking, because we are running out of time -- do you feel like the justice system works in this country? caller: she pulls up her veil when it comes to black people. i grew up during segregation. i feel like it was then, people voted, and we did not have -- all your policeman -- because our sheriff in longview, texas, was the grand dragon of the ku klux klan, so you really never got any true justice.
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but nowadays you have a right to go out and vote. we have a district attorney that says $850, if you steal that amount, we're not going to prosecute you. well, that is crap because you have small businesses, like, you stealing my stuff. host: time for just one or two more calls. paul has been waiting a while in kansas city, missouri. caller: good morning, and happy thanksgiving to you. all my fellow americans, whether you agree with me or not, today is thanksgiving. i am a 64-year-old black man, and you could never accuse me of being a gang member because i do not associate with them and i do not even know what a gang sign to throw up would look like. but joe biden is having to apologize to kyle rittenhouse, who spent his 18th birthday in a
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bar with white supremacists, and there is a picture of it on the internet of him holding up white supremacy signs or whatever. you are who you associate with. and as far as justice in this trial. the truth prevailed. the lie in this started and all of it was well documented. the lie in this case started when the police showed up. it took so long for it to even come to the case. by the same token, kyle rittenhouse by the laws of his state is innocent. whether you are in agreement with that or not. one thing that has been a lot on this show is white men calling and saying for some reason,
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everybody is calling them racist. i've never met a racist person, a person that didn't like people of other races, whether they were black, white or asian that didn't know they were racist. if you come on and say, i feel like they are attacking me, only people who realize they are not racist realize they are not racist. i'm going to give you a quick suggestion and then i'm going to go. the thanksgiving today, family gatherings, a lot of things are hard to talk about but either before or after you gather and you say the lord's prayer, sing the theme song for all in the family, and for good times. we all know the words. then sit down and discuss the difference in those two songs.
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maybe that will open you up to crt. host: that was paul in kansas city, missouri, our last caller in this first segment of "washington journal." a lot more discussion about thanksgiving in this country coming up over the next two hours of the "washington journal ," including up next, we are joined by author and hudson institute senior fellow lenny kirkpatrick, to discuss -- melanie kirkpatrick, to discuss her book, "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience." we will be right back. ♪ >> book tv, every sunday on c-span2, features leading authors discussing the latest nonfiction books. at 2:00 p.m. eastern, hillary clinton and a mystery writer discuss their international thriller, state of terror.
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at a: 30, a journalism professor offers for thoughts on the challenges facing american journalism in her book, news for the rich, white and blue. at 7:30 p.m. on about books, former new york democratic congressman -- on opening a new bookstore. plus bestseller lists, and other news from the publishing world. at 10:00 p.m. on afterwords, -- only to increase profits. he is interviewed by reg matthew, harvard and it -- harvard university economics professor and former chair of the president's council on -- council of economic advisers during the george w. bush presidency. watch sunday on c-span2, or watch online anytime at book tv
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-- booktv.org. ♪ >> "washington journal" continues. host: a conversation now on 400 years of the american thanksgiving story. our guest is melanie kirkpatrick, hudson institute senior fellow and author of the book, "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience." let's jump a little more than halfway through those 400 years to the mid-1800s.
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you write that the story of how thanksgiving became a national holiday is itself a classic american saga. explain. guest: the woman who was sitting around our thanksgiving table with us today was named sarah hale. she was editor of the most popular magazine -- one of the most popular magazines of the pre-civil war period. she had this idea of a national thanksgiving day. back then, thanksgiving was separated state by state or even community by community. we didn't celebrate on the same day. she had the idea that if all americans could come together to express gratitude on the same day, that it would help bring the country together, help unify the country. as we got closer to civil war,
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she pressed this theme, hoping it would help us avoid war. finally, she also wrote to many influencers, including presidents of the united states. because she was such a well respected figure, they wrote back to her and gave her the argument that they didn't have the power under the constitution to call a national thanksgiving day. that power was in the hands of the governors. in 1863, she wrote to president lincoln, who in the middle of the civil war took up her idea and called a national thanksgiving day, calling on all americans to look forward to a day when the country was together, unified as one nation and asking that americans celebrate with one heart and one
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voice, which is a beautiful sentiment that i hope we all strive to do today, when we sit down to our thanksgiving dinner. host: that letter to the president, published in its entirety in your book, along with other letters and writings about thanksgiving. the purpose of this letter is to entreat president lincoln to put forth his proclamation appointing the last thursday in november which falls this year on the 25th, as thanksgiving for all of those classes of people under the national government and commending this union thanksgiving to each state executive, thus by the noble example and action of the president of the united states, the permanency and unity of our great festival of thanksgiving would be forever secured. why was this issue such a passion for her and where did she come from?
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how did she become influential back in the 1860's? guest: sarah hill was born on a farm outside newport in new hampshire. she loved the holiday with a passion. as i write in my biography of her, "lady editor," she wrote in 1827 in a novel, she gave what i think is the best description in all of american literature of thanksgiving day, describing a classic new england feast. both the food and the sentiments that were present. as editor of the ladies book, she believed that america had been unified politically. i should start by saying she started her editorial career in 1828. she believed america had been unified politically, but not
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culturally. she set out in her magazine to try to help create a common american culture. she did that by publishing literary figures that have now become famous. edgar allen is one, that the annual hawthorne is another. harriet beecher stowe was a third. she also started publishing recipes. she was the first to introduce a recipe section to her magazine. she published many tips about housekeeping. her big shtick was education for women, and that is a subject for another day. she introduced the white wedding gown to america, a tradition that is still followed today. she also introduced the christmas tree. in a few weeks when you start celebrating around your
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christmas tree, think of sarah hill. host: sarah hale in the making of the modern american woman. "lady editor" is a book you might be able to pick up if you want to learn more about her. melanie kirkpatrick is the author of that book and also this book, "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience." that is what we are talking about in this hour of the "washington journal." 400 years of the american thanksgiving story, asking you to call in on this thanksgiving morning on phone lines split regionally. in the eastern or central time zones, it is (202)-748-8000. if you're in the mountain or pacific time zones, (202)-748-8001. go ahead and call in with your questions about the 400 years of the american thanksgiving story. melanie kirkpatrick, take us back or hundred years to the origination of the -- take us back 400 years to the origination of the thanksgiving story.
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guest: i will come to the pilgrims and native americans in just a moment but i will point out that that story is just one of the influences on the holiday we celebrate today, and it is not even the first thanksgiving. there are european thanksgivings that were celebrated in texas, florida, maine in virginia, all of which can lay claim to being the first thanksgiving on these shores. even earlier were the days of gratitude, celebrated by the native people. president reagan was the first to acknowledge that native tradition of giving thanks, in his 1984 proclamation, in which he quoted a lovely prayer. back to thanksgiving 400.
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there are two eyewitness accounts, both written by pilgrim leaders. we know a little bit about what happened that day. those days, it was a three day feast. 90 warriors from the confederation of indian tribes, compared with just 52 pilgrims, half of whom were women, children or youth. if you think about it, the 90 warriors might have overcome the pilgrim tribes, but they did not. it was a time of unity between the two people, of friendship, and i think that is important to remember.
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some years later, all of that collapsed and erupted in the terrible king philip wars. at that moment in time, i write that it pointed the way to the diverse and multicultural people our nation has become. what was on the table? culinary historians will tell us more about what was not on the table. we do know that because one of the pilgrims wrote this, that the native americans brought five deer, that would have set the group for quite a few meals. it was a mainstay of the feast. we also know that the native americans taught the pilgrims to plant corn and squash and beans,
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which were a mainstay of the native diet. we know there was no cranberry sauce. there were cranberries in new england, but if you've ever eaten a cranberry, you know you will not want to eat a second one, unless there is a sugar added to it. so cranberry sauce didn't appear until sometime later, when the settlers had sugar with them. it was too expensive back them to have brought it to the new world. we also know that they didn't have pie, because the settlers did not have wheat or butter. but they may have and probably had pumpkins in some form in another -- some form or another. they might have stewed it because native americans ate pumpkins to.
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they did not have potatoes. potatoes are a new world such double, but they were not native to new england. while the pilgrims may have eaten potatoes in england, they did not bring any with them. sweet potatoes came from the caribbean, and were not native to new england. if you want to eat what the pilgrims ate, i would recommend lobster, venison and pork. host: one thing they also had was prayer at that first thanksgiving. you write in your book that the religious aspects of this holiday, and perhaps the thing that has changed the most over time, over these 400 years as we look back. explain that aspect of this unique american holiday. guest: the pilgrims were great practitioners of the arts of
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gratitude. they gave thanks before every meal, and would have done so at the first thanksgiving. from the pilgrims' perspective, this was not a thanksgiving day or festival. the pilgrim and eyewitness accounts i mentioned do not include the word thanksgiving. they reserve that word for 1623, to lie, two years later when a drought threatened their crops and rainfall save them. the governor called a thanksgiving day to give thanks for that rainfall. that brings me back to the religious aspect of the holiday. when governor bradford called the religious day of thanksgiving, everybody stopped work and attended church for
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much of the day. as the holiday continued throughout the 17th century, it changed and by the end of the 17th century, people were going to church in the morning but in the afternoon, they were having a great feast with family and friends, and as it expanded over the country -- over the centuries, we kept the tradition of attending church early in the morning through the 19th century and into the 20th, but today, while churches and other houses of worship may mention and give thanks and follow -- talk about the custom of the day, services around the holiday, it is rare
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to have services on the day itself. as for americans giving thanks around their own thanksgiving table, it is impossible to know how money people will say thanks or give thanks. -- how many people will say thanks or give thanks. my guess is that it -- my guess is if anyone says grace during a dinner, it will be thanksgiving day. going around the table and asking people to express gratitude for some specific blessing that they have, and finally i will say that thanksgiving is unique. there are other thanksgivings in other countries, but nothing like what we do. one unique aspect of it is that it is a holiday that is open to people of all religious faiths
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and none. everybody is welcome around the table, and asked to give thanks in the way that is the way that works for them and goes along with their own religious beliefs. host: i want to come back to that in a moment, of how it became that way. callers for you. melanie kirkpatrick with us until the top of the hour. you can join the phone queue. (202)-748-8000 if you are in the central or eastern time zones. (202)-748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. robert is up first from clearwater, florida. we are talking about 400 years of the american thanksgiving story. go ahead. caller: with things settled in georgia, i hope giving is about peace for everyone getting together.
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this country is going too wild with fighting and arguments and chasing people down the road. i'm glad that verdict is over. i hope everyone gets along. 400 years ago, we brokered peace with the native people at thanksgiving and they shared that turkey or whatever. thank you for letting me call in. have a nice thanksgiving. host: same to you. on thanksgiving, amid times when the country has been divided, has it helped bridge that divide? guest: i think robert makes a good point about thanksgiving being about peace. in times of national crisis, and times of stress, the thanksgiving holiday has a
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comforting aspect to it. in our own time of cultural and political disunion, we live in a rougher culture today than a lot of times in our past. i think it is important to look at this history of thanksgiving, and how americans faced a lot bigger troubles than we have today. it helps give us a little perspective on that, and i hope it helps to moderate our discussions around the thanksgiving table. host: on the issue of this being a holiday for people of all religions and people who may his -- you may be of no religion, talk about the origin of that and fort washington's involvement in that -- and
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george washington's involvement in that. guest: americans can think george washington -- can thank george washington for that. he issued the first president told proclamation in 1789, when he called a national thanksgiving to give thanks for the constitution and the unification of the country, the creation of the country. washington said specifically that the holidays should be open to people of all faiths. washington was very conscious of his influence as the first president, and the things he did would set a precedent for years to come. i believe that this idea of thanksgiving that was open to all people was deliberately
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expressed, so that he could make the point as he did in other aspects of his presidency as well, that what unites us is not religion but our shared experience as americans. there is an interesting story in the 1840's in south carolina. the governor there proclaimed a thanksgiving day. as i mentioned earlier, these were state-by-state. in his proclamation, he specified that it was a christian holiday. there was a large jewish population in charleston, and they objected, of course and wrote back, explaining why
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thanksgiving was celebrated by people of all faiths, and pointing out that the governor's proclamation excluded not only jews but unitarians, muslims and people of other religions. the governor wouldn't given, but the next governor who took office early the following year, a month or more after thanksgiving, issued a new proclamation, making it open to all peoples. host: bobby is waiting in maryland to join the conversation. we are talking about the american thanksgiving story. you are on with melanie kirkpatrick. caller: good day to everyone. i am calling to talk about how most americans, especially if you are not anglo-saxon, has been given this one-sided narrative of thanksgiving. i think you guys should have somebody that is of native origin to talk about the other
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side. i feel like we make this very fanciful -- i honestly wish the natives were here. i wish they would let them go ahead and be the cannibals that they were. they showed so much amenity and then look what they got. look what they got. host: melanie kirkpatrick, the other side? guest: thank you bobby for that comment. i interviewed a number of native american leaders for my book. the take away that i found was that many native americans look at thanksgiving through two lenses. one lens is as american citizens and the other is as members of
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their native ended -- native indian nation. as americans, they will celebrate the day in the traditional way, expressing gratitude and eating turkey and watching football. at the same time, native americans use the day to look back on the terrible tragedy of the native people of this country, and also to honor their ancestors. i think this is something that all of us could incorporate into our thanksgiving day, native and non-native, to remember the tragedy of the indian people. at the same time, i will point out that that day, that thanksgiving day itself, while full of myths as you pointed out. there are lots of legends that
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aren't true. but the heart of the story, about two disparate people coming together in fellowship, to enjoy a big meal together in a spirit of gratitude. that is what that first thanksgiving was about. host: how many countries have a thanksgiving holiday like we have in the united states? guest: i found seven. two of them, canada and brazil, are copies of the american holiday. in brazils case, the ambassador to the united states in the 1940's liked the holiday so much that he took it back home with him, and the holiday was created. in canada, the canadians from a
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bully first celebrated -- the canadians probably first celebrated as new englanders who -- when new englanders who supported the crown fled to nova scotia and took the holiday with them. other countries i remember, korea has a kind of harvest festival. china also has a harvest festival. none of these other thanksgivings have the connection with history, the way ours does. host: about halfway through our conversation with melanie kirkpatrick on this thanksgiving morning, talking about the stories from her book, "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience." asking you to join in on phone lines, split regionally. (202)-748-8000 if you are in the eastern or central time zones. (202)-748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. gary from east brunswick new jersey -- east brunswick, new jersey. caller: good morning and thank
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you for taking my call. happy thanksgiving to you, personally into this program that i've been watching for many years. i turn 84 in two months. i've been a social justice activist and i am thankful for the almighty. today i will be celebrating thanksgiving alone because my former wife has passed away, and my young daughter died 32 years ago from a birth defect from an approved drug from the fda, from morning sickness that my wife took. yesterday, the headlines on the new york times and wall street journal when i went to do some shopping made me feel very good. the headlines, a full page was that a federal jury in cleveland held criminally responsible, cvs, walmart and walgreens for providing the drug that killed hundreds of thousands of young people.
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the next thing that got me very happy was that a jury found a number of people guilty in georgia for killing a black man. today, i'm going to enjoy thanksgiving by watching the thanksgiving day parade, which i used to take my daughters to and my wife. i will be thankful that i'm alive at 84, even though i have some medical issues. i'm thankful to your program which i watch every morning. i'm thankful that i am free in america, a great country. i have one more comment to make. i am an american of the jewish faith. i am thankful that even though we have anti-semitism, it is being curtailed. all people have to be lifted together. i just gave a scholarship to a young african-american child, in memory of my daughter, who graduated from that high school in new york. once again, i want to thank c-span for the expert job. i want to thank the author for
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her book that i want to buy a copy of, and donate to my library next week. take care, stay safe and enjoy thanksgiving. host: gary, happy thanksgiving and thank you for the call. melanie kirkpatrick, what do you want to pick up on? guest: i would like to express to gary a very happy thanksgiving. i'm sorry that you are celebrating alone, and i would like to say that this is not in the tradition of the holiday. americans over the course of hundreds of years now, have tried to include in the celebration, those who perhaps cannot celebrate themselves. people on the margins of society. that would include the elderly, people who are may be in nursing homes or hospitals, and people who are in prisons.
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individual americans, religious organizations, and philanthropies go all out on thanksgiving, to make sure that everybody gets a good dinner. that would also include our military, serving overseas. i'm sorry that you will not -- that you will eat your thanksgiving dinner by yourself, but i admire your attitude and your focus on gratitude, which is the hallmark of the day. thank you for calling in. host: the caller brings up watching the macy's thanksgiving day parade. in the realm of traditions on thanksgiving, if you are a wall street journal reader, there is a tradition that has been happening since 1961 at the wall street journal. the printing of two editorials.
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one entitled the desolate wilderness and one entitled the fair land. melanie kirkpatrick, former deputy editor at the wall street journal on the editorial page. explain that tradition and what those pieces are about. guest: i spent 30 years at the wall street journal, and i can tell you that those two editorials are tremendously popular with readers. they began under the editor of the vermont -- and in 1961, he published this extract from a 17th century document, we know know was based on william bradford's journal. the second editorial, he wrote himself and it is about what he observed as he traveled around america, and it is a beautiful
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piece of prose. he was a magnificent writer and as i might say, instead of -- i commend it to your attention. i noticed this morning when i was looking at them in the paper online, there are already a lot of comments on the editorials. host: on that second editorial, not to read the whole thing but this is the final three paragraphs of that. we can all remind ourselves that the richness of this country was not born in the resources of the earth, though they be plentiful, but in the men that took its measure. for that reminder is everywhere, in the cities, towns, farms, roads, factories, homes, hospitals, schools that spread everywhere over that wilderness. we remind ourselves that for all our social discourse, yet remain longest enduring society of free men governing themselves without benefit of kings or dictators.
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being so, we are the marvel and the mystery of the world, for the enduring liberty is no less a blessing than the abundance of the earth. we might remind ourselves also that if those men sitting out from -- and have been daunted by the troubles they saw around them, then we cannot this autumn be thankful for a fair land. that is the name of that editorial, the fair land. melanie kirkpatrick, our guest as we talk about 400 years of the american thanksgiving story, taking your phone calls about it as well. melanie kirkpatrick, i want to jump to 1939 in the american thanksgiving story. when we do these rankings of presidents, fdr always gets a lot of attention for his influence and what he was able to do during his terms in office but the one thing he was not able to do was move the date of thanksgiving.
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explain? guest: fdr had a good political -- but not when he asked not when it came to thanksgiving. he said he was changing the date of thanksgiving. he wanted to make it one week earlier than the traditional date because he had a dubious or i might even say dumb economic idea that if he extended the shopping. -- the shopping period between thanksgiving and christmas, americans would spend more money. of course americans would have been only too happy to spend more money but they didn't have any so it was the great depression. the country rose up and was very upset by his decision to change the date, and so half of the states decided to celebrate on the new date, the one that
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roosevelt proclaimed, but the other half wouldn't have anything to do with it, and they chose to celebrate on the traditional date. soon the thanksgivings were being called the democrat thanksgiving and the republican thanksgiving and even franksgiv ing, after franklin roosevelt. in my own case, i have a story and gary might remember this. my mother, who was from buffalo in new york state, roosevelt's state. new york was celebrating the new date, while she was in college in boston. massachusetts, the home of the first thanksgiving, they were definitely traditionalists. she couldn't go home for thanksgiving for three years because it was celebrated on different days. i should also mention that texas had a wonderful idea about this.
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instead of choosing a date, texas decided to celebrate both dates, which was a very happy solution. everybody wants two turkey dinners. in 1941, roosevelt admitted that it was a failure, and said that henceforth, starting in 1942, the country would celebrate on one date. this is where congress came in. . because congress. had never acted on the national thanksgiving holiday, there was no law respecting it. congress passed a resolution saying that thanksgiving would be the fourth thursday of november. roosevelt signed into law and in 1942, americans came together on the fourth thursday of november to celebrate the holiday. the first time it was official.
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host: callers this morning and folks on social media asking questions as we talk to you about the american thanksgiving story. emily in louisville wants to go to your roundup of what was served at the first thanksgiving. you write in your book about food traditions over the years and emily wants to know about oysters. with they have been served? -- would they have been served? guest: oysters were a staple of thanksgiving in the 19th century for sure and there is a good chance pilgrims eight oysters. one culinary story said muscles were -- mussels were more abundant than lobster closer to plymouth and oysters were found a little farther away. it is certainly possible that eight oysters. host: mary is next out of hudson, ohio. caller: good morning.
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our local newspaper did a history of thanksgiving and they mentioned that the spanish were one of the first. they had thanksgiving when they were in the area of texas, and then also saint augustine had thanksgiving celebrations in the 1500s, way before the pilgrims. they also mentioned something about cape cod, but i can't member the date. there are other instances of thanksgiving meals before, and i was wondering if you want to comment on that. thank you. guest: thank you, mary. i do have a chapter in my book talking about these claimants to the first thanksgiving. the one that i found perhaps the most interesting, you're right about florida and texas. but i particularly love the story from berkeley plantation in virginia, and -- which
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celebrated thanksgiving a couple years before the pilgrims did, and during the kennedy administration, a state senator wrote to kennedy complaining that his thanksgiving proclamation in 1961 did not mention virginia. fortunately for this senator, the letter landed on the desk of a special advisor to kennedy who as we know, was a great historian of america, and they wrote back and said you are right and he said it won't happen again and sure enough, the next year, kennedy's
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proclamation mentioned both massachusetts and virginia. host: melanie kirkpatrick with us this morning for about another 20 minutes if you want to join the conversation. (202)-748-8000 if you are in the eastern or central time zones. (202)-748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. another question from social media. this tweet, wondering if thanksgiving were a chapter taught in a critical race theory class, what do you think would be said about it? guest: i don't think i can answer that question. i certainly hope that doesn't happen. i hope critical race theory is taught in no american school. the focus on race in my view is overstated, and it divides us more than unites us, and that is not the purpose of thanksgiving.
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we want to and in martin luther kings words, focus on the content of one's character, not the color of one's skin. host: do you think thanksgiving has become politicized in this day and age? guest: yes it has, it has become politicized, and it is a shame because i think first of all that detractors of the holiday are not aware of the history of the first thanksgiving, and i also think they are forgetting what the spirit of the holiday is about, and i will say the spirit of peace, fellowship and coming together, giving thanks for our shared blessings as a nation is what the holiday at heart is about.
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it has been imperfectly practiced throughout our history. we are imperfect people, but nonetheless, this is a day when we focus on the aspects of the country and of our own lives for which we can be grateful. host: if thanksgiving has become politicized in this day and age, was there a time in the past when it had also been politicized? maybe not for the same reasons, but where thanksgiving became part of the political back and forth? guest: yes. slavery was the issue. a governor of virginia wrote to sarah hale, the godmother of thing's giving, saying he was not going to put up with the
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national claptrap of thanksgiving ammo because he said it was just an opportunity for preachers in new england to preach against slavery, and he thought -- he of course was a slaveholder, and therefore he associated with thanksgiving -- he associated thanksgiving with the antislavery movement. it had become politicized in his mind for sure and in the minds of others -- other southerners. host: one thanksgiving tradition but hopefully does not become politicized is the turkey pardoning. as we talk about these traditions and the things we see each year on thanksgiving, there is the image of the turkey pardoning at the white house. where did that tradition come from? guest: i think the root of that tradition goes back to the root of our national holiday today. lincoln's son, todd had a pet
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turkey by the name of jack. the story goes, i couldn't corroborate it but the story goes that jack was intended for the family dinner, probably on christmas. todd loved jack and went to his father and asked him to pardon, asked him to spare jack this terrible fate and lincoln agreed. jack did not make it to the dinner table on christmas or thanksgiving. host: a caller earlier mentioned the macy's thanksgiving day parade, another thing a lot of americans will be doing today, watching football. tying together thanksgiving and football, when did that start? guest: that started after the civil war, in 1869.
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the first collegiate football games were played, princeton versus rockers. rutgers won. in the 70's, the 1870's, princeton and yale started celebrating their championship football game on thanksgiving day. it started out in hoboken, new jersey and then moved to new york city. in new york city, people took up this game with a passion. even if they didn't go to the game, they would take sides and you would find people walking up and down 5th avenue. some people wore orange and black for princeton, others wore blue for yale. it became a big deal. new yorkers are trendsetters, and soon, thanksgiving day games were being played in other parts of the country, and by 1893, by
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one count, there were 5000 thanksgiving day games being played across america. these would be high school games, college games and a local football team. the idea was that people would go to the game in the morning and then come home and have a good dinner. some of these thanks giving championship games are still happening. there is one in boston, i believe that has been going for more than 100 years. host: ronald is waiting next out of miami, florida. you are on with melanie kirkpatrick. caller: good morning, happy thanksgiving to everybody. two points. the one about critical race theory, that is something that is taught at the graduate level. it is not even taught at high
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schools or even college-level. it is graduate-level classes. it is nothing more than the study of slavery and the effects that slavery had and how that in fact -- how that impacts folks now. that shouldn't be a problem. i can see where some folks -- we had slavery for how many years and don't want to think about slavery at the same time a celebrating thanksgiving. [inaudible] host: thanks for the call, from miami. to his last point, did slaves before the time of the civil war, do we know about
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thanksgiving on slave plantations and what those stories might be? guest: i was not able to find anything about it. i believe that there may be more out there now, but at the time i was writing the book, i was not able to find anything. i think ronald's point about not having much to be thankful for is an important one to think about. i will mention another legend that goes back to the pilgrims. the legend is something called five kernels of corn. the legend is that during the starving times of the pilgrims' first years in plymouth, the governor would handout five kernels of corn to each individual to eat. that was their allotment for a
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meal. even though it was a poor allotment, hardly enough to keep them going, they would always say grace and pray and thank god for that meager allotment. this is probably not true, at least not in that form, but it is interesting that in the 19th century, a tradition took hold and some people would place five kernels of corn on their dining table, in memory of the difficulties, the great difficulties that the pilgrims had, and in gratitude to the native people who help them and made it possible for them to survive. i mention this story because while i agree with ronald, that
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slaves would not have a lot to be thankful for, as the conditions were horrific, at the same time, even in the deepest despair, i think it is possible for us to remember or give thanks for some small aspect in our lives. host: as we come towards the end of this discussion, one more text message question from a viewer. they want to come back to that first thanksgiving. "i heard there were no long tables and that celebrants sat on the ground and that they ate with knives and spoons. is any of that true? " guest: i'm sure the pilgrims would have brought a table with them, but i can't imagine that there would not have been enough
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tables or chairs to seat everybody. that is probably true. similarly with knives, forks and spoons, they would have brought enough to make it possible for everyone to have a knife, fork and spoon. host: coming back to the book, "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience," towards the end of the book, you offer up several readings for the thanksgiving holiday. letters and writings from over the years, about this american story of thanksgiving. if there were one or two of those you would recommend an american family read around their thanksgiving table this afternoon or this evening, which would they be? guest: i like them all, so it is like asking a mother to choose a favorite. i think -- you mentioned
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lincoln's proclamation which is a beautiful piece of prose. that would be near the top of my list if not number one. i also think the two pilgrim accounts of that day. each is very short, just 100 words or so, but that would be on my list. there were a couple fun ones, a couple more personal ones. abigail adams writing to president adams, saying she is sorry he is not going to be home for thanksgiving. that she was going to have to deal with the relatives by herself. that of course, that kind of family dynamic has always been a part of the celebration of thanksgiving. host: the book again, is "thanksgiving: the holiday at the heart of the american experience." melanie kirkpatrick is the
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author, also a senior fellow at the hudson institute. thanks for sharing your thanksgiving morning with us on the "washington journal." guest: it was wonderful to be with you. thank you to all the callers and happy thanksgiving 400. host: a very happy thanksgiving. that will be the topic in our final hour of the "washington journal," as we turn the phone lines over to you on this thanksgiving 321. we want to know your thoughts on this thanksgiving day. what are you think will for? what should this country be think for four? phone ines -- phone lines split regionally. in the eastern or central time zones, (202)-748-8000. in the mountain or pacific time zones, (202)-748-8001. go ahead and start calling in now. we will be right back. ♪
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>> sunday night on q&a, in his latest book, a professor at university of british columbia looks at the evolutionary purpose of intoxication and the role drink and has played throughout history. >> alcohol makes it harder to lie. it is harder to make up a lie. this is may be more surprising, it makes us better at detecting lies. humans, we are focusing consciously on detecting lies, we don't do a good job, but if we relax and kind of take in the cues, we can spot lies. it is like when we shake hands to show we are not holding a weapon. cultures use intoxication at
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treaties or business meetings, anything where potentially hostile people need to figure out cooperating, as a sort of cognitive disarmament. >> you can listen to q&a and all of our podcasts on our new c-span now app. >> sunday, december 5 on in-depth, historian and conservative commentator victor davis hanson joins us live talk about war, politics and citizenship in the united states. his book titles include the father of us all, the case for trump, and his latest, the dying citizen. he says the idea of american citizenship and the ideals associated with it are disappearing. join the conversation with your phone calls, facebook comments and texts and tweets, sunday, december 5 on in-depth on book tv. before the program, visit cspanshop.org to get your copies
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of his books. >> abraham lincoln and his wife mary where the parents of four boys. only one, robert, lived beyond his 18th birthday. author jason emerson spent nearly a decade traveling across the united states, visiting and researching in numerous archives, museums and historic places. he was studying the 82 plus years in the life of robert lincoln. he focused on the president's oldest son as a union soldier, a minister to great britain, a u.s. secretary of war and the president of the chicago-based pullman card company. jason emerson is an independent historian who has been writing about the lincoln family for over 20 years. >> on this episode of book notes+. it is available on c-span now or
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wherever you get your podcasts. >> "washington journal" continues. host: thanksgiving day, 2021 and the phone lines are yours, to talk about what issues you want to bring up this thanksgiving morning. what you are thankful for, what the country should be thankful for. your thoughts on this thanksgiving day. (202)-748-8000 if you are in the eastern or central time zones. (202)-748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. we will take this conversation until the end of our program today, as usual at 10:00 a.m. eastern. alan in arkansas is up first. good morning -- happy thanksgiving. i'm thankful for the pilgrims, for crying out loud. i'm a retired american history tv -- teacher.
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will you do a sort of add-on on your screen, pull up a website so people can reference after the call, you've been talking about bradford the first hour bang. bradfordsofplymouthplantation -- could you pull that up and scrolled through that while i take a minute? host: what will people learn? caller: if you would, just will it up and scroll down to chapter four where it talks about the three reasons, everyone writes about the three reasons they left holland for america. it's such a glorious story to talk about the founding of our country. it gives the reasons.
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in the first one was -- it becomes so hard to live there -- but they said they were enjoying their liberty but the hardness of the place, he doesn't say exactly what. that was the first reason. he says because they wanted to save their kids. their kids had become involved, used two words, listen justness on dissolutions this -- it sounds like what is going on today. they want to save their kids. our country was founded on a group of people that wanted to save their children so it is all about family. the third reason, to spread the gospel of christ. those are the three reasons. your author for an hour talked about the first thanksgiving which is always incorrectly referenced being with the natives. it was actually on board the mayflower. she didn't mention the mayflower
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compact. they signed the mayflower compact the first thanksgiving 401 years ago, not 400 she said, 401 years ago. and in its, they established -- in it, they established the first civic government in the world and public schools, talking about crt that came up. then mind you, they had no slavery and the first thanksgiving with the natives a year later is after half of them perish during the difficult winter. the story she could have told about squanto who had become a slave and returned to america, the same place where they landed, plymouth, to the village that had been decimated apparently by probably smallpox
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from the original folks that had come into do some land investigation and such. host: i wish i could give you the chance to chat with the author from the last segment why didn't you call in? caller: i wanted to have a couple of minutes to introduce this one online reference that i hope you will pull up. host: i will do that for you. the state of massachusetts, mass.gov has a downloadable copy of bradford's manuscript of plymouth plantation. you can download the digitized version of that and take a look through the chapters that alan brings up, mass.gov. surely in harvey, louisiana is up next. good morning. caller: good morning. i called a couple of months ago and talked to you concerning my
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mother. i'm the one that said she took the covid shot and it didn't go well and she had a blood clot in her legs. she's not able to walk, but i am thankful and i'm thankful to god that she is still here today. and guess what? on this day is her birthday. she was born in 1921. today she's going to be 100 years old. host: what's her first name? caller: her name is miss willie mae. and she lives in houma, louisiana. we are thankful that she is still here. she may not be able to walk, but her mind is still there. she is just as safe as ever and i say -- i pray to god for that host: will you wish her a very happy birthday from us? a very happy 100 earth day.
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sherry -- birthday. sherry and portsmouth, virginia. caller: happy thanksgiving to everyone and i particularly want to say that we are all grateful for the verdict in the ahmaud arbery case and that family has suffered and now on this -- it is very symbolic that on this thanksgiving, they have got some justice. i think the entire country needs to feel relieved and thankful for that verdict that came down in the ahmaud arbery case because lots of us know the american dream is still available to all. host: i wonder -- at the thanksgiving table tonight and is that something you think will be a subject that you all agree on or may have different opinions? caller: it is a subject we all can agree on.
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the video was conclusive in terms of their guilt and the verdict was symbolic of the fact that in america, you still can't do that and you can't commit a crime and get away with it. families across the country will be talking about that verdict because it tells that the american dream is still possible for everyone. the same thing that happened in charlottesville, we are beginning to see that our system does work and we needed to have that confirmation and to have that on this thanksgiving is a gift i think we all can appreciate. host: thanks for the call. we will continue to take your calls until 10:00 eastern. (202) 748-8000 in the eastern or central time zones. (202) 748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. callers this thanksgiving day
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bringing up the topics of covid-19, about the verdict. a conversation now for a few minutes around what could be tricky conversations around your thanksgiving table. families getting together, perhaps after two years apart, and trying to navigate what could be difficult political topics or difficult topics with issues happening weird by her thomas coleman, a professor at columbia. he's also the author of the book "the way out: how to overcome toxic polarization." good morning to you. guest: thank you for having me on, and happy thanksgiving. host: where would you start on your advice to families sitting around their tables, it may be years apart, and who may be concerned about a relative they haven't seen for a while who may
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have a different political opinion. guest: i think i would just begin by acknowledging that this is a particularly difficult time in the life of most americans. i think being locked down, shut down for two years, being disappointed by the fact that we thought we were coming out of this and then we went back into it because of the delta variant, and all of the stresses that have come around that, it's been an extraordinarily difficult time for most americans. some more than others. i think recognizing that this is a hard time for everybody. whether we can tell it or not, whether we see it in our stress or not. i guess i begin by asking people to just take a second and think about themselves as they go into thanksgiving. where are they emotionally? are they in a place to open their hearts and engage with the people they love or that they are coming together with?
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one of the main things i ask people to think about is when they engage in thanksgiving and gather with our family and friends, what do they hope to see happen today? do they want to have debates, do they want to go into political discourse and challenge one another, or do you want to to some degree put that aside or at least for a bit, and reconnect with people we haven't been with for a couple years? i think that intention, that decision is really important. americans in particular tend to come up when political issues come up, they tend to move right into debate. a debate is a game to win an argument that could easily escalate because of the tensions we are all experiencing. is that what you want to do, or would you rather hear from people about how they are doing and how the last year or two has been since you saw them last?
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talk a little bit about where you are in your experience and sort of begin in a place where you can reconnect with one another, certainly before you launch into any political debate. host: for a lot of folks, personal health is an issue that they can't put aside. what advice do you have for navigating relatives who may have different views on covid, on covid behaviors and safety? what do you say to those folks in that unique situation, as we are in our second thanksgiving of pandemic? 1 as -- guest: as we all know, this issue of masks and vaccinations has become very polarized and politicized. unfortunately, but it's there. my recommendation is that whoever is the convene or of the meal -- convener of the meal,
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the day, the host, it is incumbent on them to take this seriously. if you know there are folks coming that are not comfortable being vaccinated, not comfortable wearing masks, it may challenge that, you need to head that off. one way i recommend you do that is in most families, in most friend groups, you know somebody who is kind of the natural mediator, the person that when there's a problem sort of steps in and says, let's sit down and think about this and try to work this. i would think about who in my family has that kind of trust that members of your family trust, and turn to them, reach out to them and say, we need to figure out how to do this beforehand so it doesn't become tense as people show up. i would try to be proactive about it as much as you can and i realize this is thanksgiving
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morning so you don't have a lot of time, but making a couple of calls and coming up with an understanding that most people are comfortable with is a way to start it so that it's not a surprise or it's just not a landmine that you happen to step on as people walk in the door. host: at one point -- what point should people not go? guest: that's a difficult and personal decision. if you don't go because you are afraid for your health and being exposed to covid, if you don't go because you are sending a message to your family that you disagree with politics, those are significant signals that you are sending, powerful signals. if you decide to do that, i would way it carefully and can -- weigh it carefully and communicate beforehand. this is where im.
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i am uncomfortable with my health or live with someone whose health is vulnerable or even say, my politics -- i'm passionate about my politics and i don't feel comfortable and i think things will light up if i show up. if you decide not to go, it is something i would weigh carefully because it does send a message and could have lasting repercussions in your relationships. talk to them beforehand, lay out your take on it and act accordingly. host: the book "the way out: how to overcome toxic polarization," what do you say to people who are exhausted about the political divide in this country, people who are wondering if they bottomed out or where the bottom is in this country of being divided? guest: it's a great question. the good news is, you are not alone. there have been surveys that
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have identified something like 86% of more politically moderate americans are exhausted. they are tired of the dysfunction in washington, tired of the vitriol and hate they see on news programs. they really just want us to lower the temperature and get back to a more functional government and society. and so there's a large swath of people that feel the same way as you do. that's why wrote the book, to specifically say that akon you are not alone. -- a, you are not alone. the, there is five things -- be, there is five things you can do -- before you launch into conversations with people with different political views from you, stop and reflect for a second about, what do i want to do here? how do i want to engage this person? i try to use science and
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research divided societies that have stopped and pivoted. what does that mean for individual lives, communities, and scaling up to our nation? it is good that we are exhausted because that's when people start to really think about changing direction. but they need some clarity about what to do and one thing to do is again, find somebody who you trust and do you think others trust and get some help with it. how to engage with others who oppose political views. host: i just want you to respond to two folks on social media who have been tweeting as we've been having this conversation, @cspan wj. juggernaut rights this about this cut -- writes this about
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this conversation. i have to discuss my mail to female transition with my family. i have told them about this within the month but only some. the elderly relatives do not know and dancing around the topic today is going to be scary and hard. what are your thoughts? guest: again, it's important to recognize that you're not alone. many americans go through similar kinds of transitions and have faced them. talking to members of your community that have had similar experiences as a place to start. know that most americans today are not in a great place to deal with difficult conversations if everything becomes quickly polarized. it is a very loaded time, so recognize that particularly for older members of your family, it may be particularly challenging
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at this time for them to take in new information. you will want to try -- tread slowly and carefully, but this is a new era for you. in some ways, it's a wonderful era for you. it's a time of freedom for you and so it is something too old to mentally celebrate those with whom you can celebrate. but also know that for others, it might be a really challenging topic. so you want to do your best to be clear about it and honest about it and tell your story, but in some ways, you need to titrate your expectations about what they can do certainly immediately in the short run. it sometimes takes people a while to get used to these kinds of transitions and come around. host: this is steve on twitter -- with my dad's side of the family, if and when we rarely get together, one of the aunts has to yell out there is no
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talking about politics. we just have bad uncles that love the shouting matches. the people that want to have the shouting match, want to have the fight? guest: again, that's a really interesting question when there are those divides. it's fine for whoever's home it is that you are at set up some guidelines. it's like, ok, for those of you that want to get into this, head out to the backyard, head down to the basement, and have at it. if it is something they find like sports, engaging and competitive and interesting, maybe it works for them. maybe it goes well and maybe they can have those kinds of conversations. if it spreads and becomes contagious and spreads to the wholemeal and shuts down -- the whole meal and shuts down the day, you've got to put a
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firewall to say, if you want to do this, do it for a bit but when you come to my table, open your hearts and minds. let's be together and connect. that's what this day is about, being grateful and thankful for having each other. i think you need to have some kind of authority in your home about the conditions under which people can do that and the spaces and times when they can't. host: peter thomas coleman, i know we've taken you longer than we had you booked for, but thanks for taking the questions, important conversation. happy thanksgiving. guest: same to you. thanks for having me on. host: the book is "the way out: how to overcome toxic polarization," peter thomas coleman of columbia university. back to your phone calls this morning, about 40 minutes left in our program. giving you the phones to talk
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about thanksgiving 2021. brent is in quincy, michigan. thanks for waiting. caller: hello. i'm thankful for art. someone once said we don't -- we have art so we don't die of the truth. this holiday is based on a romantic mythology. which is unfortunately untrue and anybody who would like to know of the real story of the clash of cultures between europe and the native peoples should read "the history of the indies," or as a priest, he participated in the conquest -- where as a priest, he
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participated in the conquest of cuba. some more mythology getting to current affairs, i just got news this morning that my aunt -- actually cousin -- died of covid today at 6:30. host: sorry for your loss. caller: i'm a little bit revved up, especially when i see -- i live near hillsville college, the bastion of conservatism. i am looking at one of their articles that says -- as yet another show of tierney, president jim -- tyranny, president joe biden claims the society may be that -- must be vaccinated to return to normal. my response to my learned student of history from hillsville college is that it is george washington, if her cry of
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tierney had prevailed against -- tyranny had availed against george washington in 1787 that his troops be inoculated against smallpox, they would probably singing "god save the queen" at the beginning of the sporting events. so this is the present day mythology that we have that we need to be thankful for. host: thanks for sharing. sorry again about your loss. lucas, fredericksburg, virginia, you are next. caller: good morning. happy thanksgiving. in general, i'm thankful for my friends and family, especially colleague of mine who's been a big help inside and outside of work, as well as my managers, all of my people, followers on social media, etc., stuff like that.
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host: what kind of work do you do? caller: i do retail on the marine corps base. it is like target for the marine corps and their families only. saturday's i am a party host at a family entertainment center. host: what has that latter job been like during a time of covid? caller: i'm sorry, what do you mean by latter job? host: the weekend job, is that something you are able to do during covid? caller: yes. march 2020, i got to work one day and then the state -- stay-at-home order came. we came back as -- and then we eventually returned to parties. host: hope you can party this thanksgiving. happy thanksgiving. jonathan, jersey city, you are next. caller: thankful for c-span, a
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wonderful service you provide in helping keep the democracy vibrant, very appreciative of that and tankful, and also, i still believe in america -- thankful, and also i still believe in america that we have a system that allows us to debate different laws. things like stand your ground, i've started to think about how to change those laws so that tragedies don't happen and people don't get killed. for example, perhaps people should have to try to wound somebody before actually taking their life. again, thankful we can have a conversation about that and we the people can change laws. i have an association in my city that we've gotten a lot done. thankful again for c-span and living in the united states of america. host: loretta, pueblo, colorado. caller: i'd like to echo his
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sentiments because that's exactly how i feel. i'm thankful we can gather around the thanksgiving table, i hope, and not get into a free-for-all about politics, about what's going on and the ahmaud arbery trial. can i talk about that a little bit? host: of course. caller: it is probably what we are going to be talking about across our thanksgiving table. host: do you think the folks at your table are going to agree on your opinions about the verdict that came down? caller: not all of them, but most of them will. i agree with the verdict. i think that if i see somebody running, whether i think they committed a crime or not, my instinct is to call police. that's everybody's instinct. even though we do have a gun in our house, my son-in-law is a former deputy, we would take gun and chase the guy.
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as the caller said, the one caller said, he might have been casing the joint. even if he was doing that, you don't have any proof so you have to call the police. that's my stance on that. i don't know -- on both sides of the issue people get hot and there were arguments and they quit talking to one another, and that's one of the problems right there. you quit talking to the other side so you don't see where they are coming from. host: thanks for the call. on this issue of arguments around the thanksgiving table, some polling on how often that happens courtesy of the jennifer harper's column in "the washington times." pointing to two poles about americans habits, many shatter the notion that thanksgiving is
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a battleground. 79% of u.s. adults say there are no arguments about politics at their thanksgiving celebration, including 80% of republicans, 81% of independents and 79% of democrats but some acknowledge political conversations occur, 17% of republicans, 18% of democrats. another quinnipiac poll released shows respondents plan to avoid political chatter, 68% of republicans, 69% of democrats. 74% said political arguments among family or friends were not likely to occur in the first place. that from jennifer harper's " inside the beltway" column. let us know what you are thankful for this year and what the country should be thankful for. (202) 748-8000 in the eastern or
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central time zones. (202) 748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. irving, laurel, maryland. caller: how are you doing? good morning. thanks for having me on. i just wanted to say that i am thankful this thanksgiving for everything that has happened in my life, the way that the spirit has been guiding me through this year and through these storms we've all been through. it's been a hard almost two years for everybody. it allowed us to see things that i don't think we would have been able to see had we not went through some of these hardships and struggles. so i'm just thankful to the great awakening and the growth that's allowed me to have in the whole country as a whole.
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i just pray that we all try to stay on this path of just looking for more information on our own and being more enlightened to what's really going on around us and being more impactful, not only with our words but with our actions. host: irving, thanks for the call. rebecca, merced, california. caller: good morning. this is kind of regarding conflict. i would say keep alcohol to a minimum. even before covid and before the racial and political divide, thanksgivings have turned into a nightmare when people start drinking and turning into idiots. i would say limit the alcohol because it is a fuel. it definitely will light the fire. happy thanksgiving, everyone. host: happy thanksgiving.
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keep calling in for about the next half hour on "the washington journal." it is just about 9:30 on the east coast this thanksgiving morning. as you continue to call in, i want to play for you president biden earlier this week offering his thanksgiving message. [video clip] president biden: this thanksgiving, we have so much to be grateful for. vaccines are effective, safe, and free, promising new treatments promising for hope that we can bring an end to the worst tragedies of this crisis. record job growth, the strongest recovery in the world, and most of all, the chance to be together again with the people we love on thanksgiving. as you gather together with your thank -- your family, i want you to know how grateful i am to serve as your president. i promised i will never stop working to address your families' needs and we will confront challenges that we face
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and face them honestly. that we will keep building this economy around hard-working folks that built this country. host: president biden from earlier this week, talking a little bit about the economic recovery and things to be thankful for, and the biden administration getting more good news on that front just yesterday. the number of americans filing initial unemployment claims tumbled to 199,000, the lowest level since november 1969. that's according to a labor department report that came out yesterday, as "the washington post" describes it as a spate of economic good news that many of the wrinkles continue to smooth out. it was the latest bit of good news for the labor market, they write, which remains about 3 million jobs below pandemic levels but has staged a recovery
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of about 189,000 jobs a month this year. consumer spending increased by 1.3% in october, the fastest pace since march. they write americans continuing to spend their dollars. back to your phone calls on this thanksgiving morning, mary, harwood, missouri. caller: i would just like to say i'm very grateful for my family and i'm grateful to live in the united states of america that is a free country, and i'm grateful to the lord for keeping us safe during this pandemic. host: thanks for the call. barbara, new york city. caller: good morning. i'm calling to thank the people who took time out of their grief and with the relentless propaganda from "washington journal," on covid, they took time out to warn us about the
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dangers of the next covid vaccine. mr. ramirez 16-year-old son died from the vaccine and the nurse who called to tell us that 10 out of 12 people in her icu were people who were fully vaccinated. and a man who called about a relative who tested negative for covid one day, got vaccinated the next day, and died. host: are you unvaccinated? caller: i thank those callers for their courage. host: will you ever take the covid vaccine? will you get to a point that you will trust it? we lost our brother. phone lines if you want to call in this thanksgiving morning and tell us about what you are thankful for and what the country should be thankful for, (202) 748-8000 in the eastern or central time zone. (202) 748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. we showed you president biden
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just a little bit ago. it was kevin mccarthy on the floor of the house last week talking about the biden administration's policies, what it's done to prices in this country, and painted this picture of thanksgiving 2021. (202) 748-8003 --[video clip] >> it is thanksgiving. i guarantee what they will talk about, this is the most expensive thanksgiving they've ever had read i know -- ever had. i know those in virginia and new jersey realize what poverty in one year can do. americans are paying more for gasoline, the highest price in seven years. mr. speaker, that was the last time president biden was down in the white house. to get to and from work, to drive their kids to school, for
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bringing their elderly parents to a doctors appointment, americans are paying more for materials their businesses need to operate. which means higher prices for consumers and less opportunity for wage increases. inflation is a tax on all americans and is robbing americans of the future they deserve. host: the minority leader on the floor of the house last week. it is thanksgiving morning. let us know what you are thankful for. geneva, albany, kentucky. caller: i just want to say that i'm thankful for south-central kentucky and growing up in a loving home with a mom and dad and several -- seven siblings. and the last year in the united states of america. thank you so much.
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host: jerry, hartford, kansas. caller: hello. my name is jerry. i live in kansas, the flyover town or country. my family misses -- my family -- this is our second pandemic to live through. the first one was in 1918 and door jet, my grandfather, -- georgia, my grandfather, was taking care of sick people. he told me a wagon would come around and say, "bring out your dead," and he was very active in taking care of sick people and helping. the only thing he could say that was different about him as he chewed tobacco the whole time. he made his whole little family chewed tobacco because he thought that would keep them from getting the spanish flu. and nobody caught it. they all survived well. just wanted to say hello to
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everyone in happy thanksgiving, and i am a very -- everyone and happy thanksgiving, and i'm a very blessed woman. host: how many people are getting together in your house? caller: about 35 people. host: any of those that you haven't seen for two years? will there be folks you haven't seen since the pandemic started? caller: no. we are a very small town, a town of 500. most of these people, my family, live about 20 miles away, so we get together and each other. i have had both my shots. some of my family have had both their shots, but the ones that haven't very careful to use their masks and hand sanitizer and we are very careful about each other. it's a very hard time we are going through right now, but if you do it right and use your head and do whatever everybody tells you to do, it will be
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fine. host: over 30 people getting together, are there many political disagreements or do you all get along pretty well? caller: we get along really well . we have lots of different political agreements but when you get together for something like this, it's the time to leave all those things at the door and just come in and enjoy the family. it would be so boring if we all felt alike. host: who usually sell -- says the blessing? caller: my daughter would say the blessing. host: why is that? caller: she's very good at the blessing. she's just a very good, outgoing , loving person, and everybody would love to hear her say the blessing. host: call back down the road and let us know what she says at this thanksgiving 2021. caller: thank you. host: paul, front royal,
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virginia. caller: good morning. i am thankful for our suckers. i drive a lot in my job and they work long hours, drive into the night to keep -- truckers. i drive a lot in my job and they work long hours, drive into the night. they are like the honeybees of our nation. without them we wouldn't surprise -- we wouldn't drive. host: are you driving a truck right now? caller: no, i just drive for my job host: what kind of work do you do? caller: i work in sales. host: do you know many truckers? caller: my uncle is one and i know the lifestyle he had to go through. it's a tough job, especially if you have family. we need them. host: why did he like it so much? why did he do it so long?
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caller: why did he do it? host: what did he like about it? caller: he did it because it probably paid well and he had to support his family. he lived in a low income area of texas so it was all the jobs that i guess were available. host: what kind of sales do you do? caller: i work on college campuses. host: what's life like on a college campus right now amid covid? how different is it this year versus last year? caller: i feel bad for the students. my college experience, there was a lot more freedom that they get to experience. i can't imagine having to do the majority of your classes online. that would drive me nuts. i probably personally would have taken the year off instead of going through this. host: why do they do it?
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you talk to those kids about taking a year off or continuing their studies under covid? what do they say? caller: i don't ask them about that. i feel like that's a personal question so i don't get into it. host: thanks for the call. on the issue of thanksgiving in this year of the pandemic versus last year of pandemic, cdc director rachel wilensky -- rochelle walensky talked about that topic. here's a bit of what she had to say. [video clip] >> as we approach the thanksgiving holiday, i want to reflect on where we were a year ago. i can remember waiting in great anticipation for the life-saving vaccines we currently have at our fingertips. last year, many families did not gather and celebrations went
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without parents, grandparents, and uncles and cousins. this year i am more optimistic. i've heard from many families who are now able to reunite because of the protection from covid-19 vaccine. there is certainly much to be thankful for this year. for me and my family, we will reflect on how deeply thankful we are that we can safely be together. if you or your family members are not yet vaccinated, please consider the benefits of vaccination. roll up your sleeves and get protected or boosted, especially if you will be around those that are at higher risk or children under the age of five who are not yet eligible for vaccination. host: cdc director rochelle walensky from earlier this week. back to your phone calls, this is macy in venice, florida, good morning. caller: good morning, sir. i cannot be thankful enough this year to have president biden in
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the white house. in relation to what he's doing and liberty and freedom that he has brought back to our country. host: macy, i think you are not talking into your phone anymore but we got your point. we will go to richard in lakewood, california. good morning. caller: good morning. i'm thankful for my family, of course, and the u.s. constitution, and thankful for c-span. it's great. host: richard, you are thankful for the constitution. what's your favorite part? caller: the whole thing, every bit of it. all the amendments and all the original stuff. nothing in there is wrong. the bill of rights is always opposed. host: if you could propose your
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own constitutional amendment, any idea on what you would propose? caller: if everybody could learn to get along better than they are doing now. host: that would be a tough one to enforce. caller: of course it would, but that would be my hope. host: thanks for the call. happy thanksgiving. steve, western, massachusetts. caller: good morning. first and foremost, i am thankful that i was born an american. secondly, your guest mr. patrick mentioned thanksgiving football games -- ms. kirkpatrick mentioned thanksgiving football games. i am thankful i played in a rivalry that is over 100 years old between westberg and -- massachusetts. i am sad they are not playing this game because southbridge was unable as i have been told to field a football team.
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this is a great rivalry. we had john fitzgerald, center for the dallas cowboys, played in this game. it's a great tradition. i'm just happy i played for it. host: is this a local turkey bowl? caller: no, it's a thanksgiving tradition. when i played in 1968, we had 10,000 people. webster, massachusetts was a big male down. -- mill town. we had the largest optical company in the world. when i was in school, i knew a cheerleader and three of them went over to the neighboring town. they had a cinderblock thrown through the back window. i mean, this is how vicious or how contentious the rivalry is. i mean, i don't think latin
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boston and english plays anymore. i'm just glad to be in this country. we have our problems. we've always made it through. one more thing -- host: just one question. i found a book on amazon, "they played to win: a 70 year history of the football series." is that the series you are talking about? caller: that is absolutely the series. host: that was written in 1989 so 100 years. who usually gets the better of who? caller: i think it's pretty even. southbridge is a bigger town than us. yeah, southbridge is a bigger school. good night, we had much back in the 1960's, i think the coach of
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southbridge was caught trying to make it through the fence at one of our practices to see what we were doing, what sort of plans we had. one year we played, my junior year, snow and ice on the field. we won my senior year 34-0. ha ha. rivalries like this, competition like this are what makes america great. one thing about prince philip's war, ms. capac mentioned this, -- per patrick mentioned this -- king philip's war, rather. it was a landmark for the indians, that and mount what tusa. that is one of the main routes i have read for the natives when they attack the colonists for king philip's war. there's a lot of history around here. our town, most of these towns
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were incorporated precolonial times. we have woodstock, connecticut, which used to be new rocks. , massachusetts. i believe that was inc. 1640. i'm just grateful to be here -- we have a diverse community. america is changing for the best. host: what position do you play? caller: i was a defender and a guard, and i played linebacker. host: thanks for the call. caller: thank you. host: about 10 minutes left in this thanksgiving "washington journal," 10 minutes to hear about you -- hear from you about thanksgiving day 2021. (202) 748-8000 in the eastern or central time zones. (202) 748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. dodge city, kansas, this is les. caller: good morning, john. host: good morning, sir.
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caller: i want to wish everyone a happy thanksgiving. the other night, i was watching an old program called "tour of duty," when our soldiers were in vietnam and it was thanksgiving. they were all talking about their mothers and what they made special, the turkey, the pies, the cranberries and all that. then their commander came over and said, come on, man, got a surprise for you -- men, got a surprise for you. they came over to a feast laid out for them. they were also amazed and so happy and they all sat down to eat, and they were talking about thanksgiving and how great it was. the first thing they did was open their big yaps and start shoving food in. not single one of them said "thank you, god, thank you for
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this day, thank you for this food, thank you, lord for loving us enough to give us this meal." thanksgiving is for saying thanks to our god. can you remember that, people? this is america. we got a lot to be thankful for. thank god. host: les in kansas. this is a thanksgiving proclamation issued at the request of congress by george washington october 3, 1789. and printed in today's "washington times," here's part of what that proclamation stated. "therefore i do recommend assigned the thursday -- third thursday of november -- glorious being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, and that well be, that we may all -- reunite for his
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kind care and protection of the people of this country, previous to their becoming a nation, for the signal and manifold mercies and favor, able positions of his providence in the course and conclusion of the late war, for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have enjoyed, for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been able -- enabled to establish constitutions of government for the civil and religious liberty, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge, and in general for all the great and various favors which he has been pleased to confer upon us." george washington, october 3, 1789. sam, rockville, maryland. caller: thank you so much, john. i am thankful for the work of god that literally got me out of
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covid when i was in the hospital at shady grove hospital. i was in the hospital and i literally thought i was going to die. i'm not afraid of death because i know my redeemer, but i was just really sick and i thank god for the church and people who came around and just really helped me. i wanted to say something real quick, that i am thankful for chaplains who are the present bodies. they kim -- come up when natural disasters happen, shootings. even though it was instituted by george washington, chaplains started when he saw the soldiers needed spiritual guidance during the revolutionary war. so chaplains started then. it is a constitutional thing
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with that. chaplains are not just christian. there are imams, rabbis, chaplains in congress. i want to thank god for spiritual presence. i actually got out of the hospital on the wing of a prayer before i went on a ventilator, and i am so thankful today. i can just sit back, listen to programs like you, listen to people calling from all over the country, and this and that. i'm thankful to be alive and i'm thankful for the word of god and i'm thankful for our lord almighty. host: a few more of your comments from social media, timothy writing in -- "i'm very thankful for the affordable care act and the professionals who help me get by even though i don't work." jason in honolulu
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saying -- "thankful for living in america and being able to exchange ideas freely." bobby saying -- "are we thankful some people have exhausted their unemployment benefits and are still unemployed? " it is not a place to demand your freezing -- freedoms, just be glad for them -- thankful for them, and not be so selfish as to get the crust of the pumpkin pie. caller: i just want to thank as that lady was saying, thank god i'm still alive. last year i had covid and almost died at 105 fever. i barely made it through and i'm just thankful i live in a great nation. we have a great president. unemployment is low. i know gas prices are high but he opened the oil strategic reserves so i think the prices will go down. i want to think that we live and
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a great nation and we can all get along, and we still have a democracy left. what happened january 6 was not right so that cannot happen again. i am thankful we have a great nation still and a great president, and a great and bright future. host: what makes you optimistic about the future? i think we lost dan. randy in louisiana -- before we get to randy, following up on dan's comments and other colors on the -- callers on the issue of covid, infections and hospitalization starting to surge particularly in midwest states. this is the daily average of new covid cases from june of this year through now. you can see the surge in the south in the late summer and early fall months. the south is the place where new covid cases are the lowest but that surge as the headline notes
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, is happening particularly in midwest states. in 14 states, cases are up 40% or more of the last two weeks, that again from "the new york times." if you want to keep calling in and let us know what you are thankful for this year, this is randy in louisiana. good morning. caller: good morning. like the last two callers that are thanking god for our country and thank god for the constitution. and they are about to rip that apart, it looks like, try to. australia and the people that gave up their second amendment there, that that was totally fruitless. they never should have done that. host: when you say "they are
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going to tear it apart," who is "they?" caller: the communists. khrushchev -- thanks to eisenhower forewarning us -- khrushchev said we will take this country over without firing a shot and they are doing a great job. this place is being torn down by the elites of the world which that is just a few people. and i give thanks that i can protect myself like the rittenhouse kid did. those that murdered that black man deserve what they got so far, justice has prevailed on that, but this country has been had by the democrats and republicans of this united states, and the people need to wake up and realize these people
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are not for us. they got -- they are either blackmailed or intimidated. host: the caller before you said he was optimistic about the future of this country. where do you stand on the future of this country? caller: i'm optimistic too, because they woke everybody up. what they are trying to do to our children in the schools and a talkshow host back in the 1990's, he always says, always used the term "government training centers." there was neil boards and i don't know whatever happened to him. they are trying to say, we just discovered this. this has been going on for quite some time. trying to change the minds of
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our kids. the parents are hopefully waking up. you have a bunch of apathetic parents out there ever since probably -- i am almost 70. this wasn't going on when i was going to school, but -- and i say this has been going on ever since they took prayer out of school and with lbj and that botch. host: randy in louisiana, our last caller. one more tweet to show you. this one from the library of congress on this thanksgiving morning. here's what they sent out -- "i thanksgiving tale that you may not know. in 1926, president coolidge supporters in mississippi sent him a raccoon for him to kill and serve thanksgiving dinner. yes, you read that correctly.
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instead, the coolidges adopted the raccoon and named her rebecca. that is where we will end on this thanksgiving morning. we will be back here tomorrow at 7:00 eastern, 4:00 pacific. have a very nice thanksgiving holiday. ♪ ♪ >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government funded by these television companies and more, including charter communications/ >> broadband is a force for empowerment. that is why charter invested billions upgrading technology and empowering opportunity in communities big and small. charter is connecting us.
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>> charter communications supports c-span as a public service along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> here is what is ahead on this thanksgiving day. a couple of former white house chief of staff's talk about the position. then focusing on nutrition in the united states. then part of this symposium on the legacy of clarence thomas focusing on federalism and the separation of powers. ♪ >> black friday, the sale you've been waiting for starts this friday at c-spanshop.org, c-span's online store. shop friday through sunday and save up to 30% on our latest collection of c-span sweatshirts, hoodies, blankets, and more. there is for every c-span fan through the holidays and

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