Vail Daily editorial: Give thanks |

Vail Daily editorial: Give thanks

the Vail Daily Editorial Board

This week marks our country’s Thanksgiving holiday. It’s a holiday born of heartfelt gratitude by the first settlers of the Plymouth Colony in today’s Massachusetts. It’s a recognition of hard times overcome and better days on the horizon. Thanksgiving was informally celebrated until it was made an official holiday during the Civil War, one of our nation’s most turbulent times. The proclamation was signed by President Abraham Lincoln, who, we often forget, wasn’t much loved until he fell victim to an assassin’s bullet.

Those early Thanksgiving celebrations, then, were often heartfelt, especially in times when our nation was torn asunder, but also when celebrating the bounty of the growing season just past struck closer to home than a simple trip to the local supermarket.

This year it seems as if the world is in a particular hurry on its trip to hell in a handbasket. If you’re traveling, especially overseas by air, please be alert and watchful. The world’s barbarians are particularly barbaric these days.

But people in these United States have plenty to be thankful for this year. The nation’s economy is improving, if not sparkling — labor force participation, in particular, remains a stubborn problem. Low fuel prices are keeping many other prices under control, so our paychecks aren’t under quite as much pressure from so many directions. Just that is reason enough to celebrate.

Despite the bleating of the perpetually-aggrieved, we continue to live in a free, prosperous land.

Life here in the Vail Valley isn’t always easy. Our businesses are once again hard-pressed to find workers, and those workers are again finding it hard to find housing. Remember, though, that those problems are better than the reality of just a few years ago, when foreclosure notices filled several pages of this newspaper every week.

Even with an improving economy, though, many of our neighbors still have a hard time making ends meet, much less finding cash for extras as simple as a holiday meal.

Still, we have much to be thankful for. For the second year in a row, we have abundant snow in the valley. That’s the perfect substance to nurture and raise this year’s crop of visitors, the people on whom our economy depends.

What the rest of the winter brings is still up anyone’s guess, of course. But we’re off to a good start, and we all need to take a moment to savor that. More important, please remember: We get to live here.

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