Kass: Will Trump and Biden Allow Americans to Set Aside Our Tomahawks for Thanksgiving?
Who should be really thankful this Thanksgiving? CNN. That's right, their viewership (link below) has dropped 70% since Trump left office. Well, King Kong's back and with him "engaging news" (& viewers and profits). Congrats to all the media outlets. Your ship has finally come in.
Will Trump and Biden Allow Americans to Set Aside Our Tomahawks for Thanksgiving?
By John Kass
November 16, 2022
America has been feasting for years on angry politics and toxic politics and tribal politics. Many of us are literally fed up. And Thanksgiving is coming.
The White House picks turkeys to get a pardon. Can’t Americans be pardoned from the exhausting drama of politics? And before one of you starts screaming at me in the voice of the Napoleonic duelist Harvey Keitel to say that I never loved the emperor, all I’m asking is this:
As we prepare for Thanksgiving can we just push back from the table a little bit and set aside the warclubs, tomahawks and swords?
Yes, I know this will upset the true political warriors, but can we keep the tomahawks out where they belong, at least for Thanksgiving, just outside the doors of the lodge? Unclean, somewhat grisly tomahawks should be nowhere near the Thanksgiving table. The mere sight will ruin the appetite and kill dinner conversation.
Even so, Trump’s pronouncements from Mar-a-Lago on Tuesday night bear digesting. His words will take some time to sort out. I don’t feel like blasting out some quick hot take about Trump and the Republicans. I’ve already done that. And now I’d rather consider, and digest what the former president says and take my time.
It may be that the former president’s time has passed, that Republicans appreciate his combat with the establishment but now they’re looking to move on. At least, that’s the media theory, and you know how fairly Trump has been treated by the American media.
Or, it may just be that he’s been playing a turtle trick, hiding back in his shell to see who will come out against him and then grab them like that old snapping turtle in the muddy waters.
I’d like to clear my mind and ride a good horse in the snow. A fine high stepping sure-footed horse, a Friesian horse or maybe a good old American quarter horse. A horse in need of good work, the horse stopping on the trail, breath pluming, maybe an antlered buck with his head up nearby.
I’m tired of the drama, Mr. Trump. And I think many Americans are tired of it. The thing is, I can’t stand the left, I can’t stand the media that simpers about “speaking truth to power,” yet carries the left’s water day after day on behalf of Big Tech and Big Government and the Security State and mocks the American people. Watch the lefty cable news, read what we used to call “mainstream media,” and the sense you get from them about Republicans is that we’re the people the country is supposed to hate with reason.
But I’m also tired of the drama. Maybe someone who could read animal tracks in the snow can look over those political numbers from the mid-term election and see the evidence of Americans dragging their heels, tired of constant drama, dreading the next news cycle.
Leading up to the Trump event announcement, the other day on The Chicago Way podcast with Jeff Carlin, and again in my free column off the podcast, I wondered if Trump was about to “jump the shark” like Fonzie in the old “Happy Days” sit com, and wear a leather jacket like the Fonz while water skiing near Mar-a-Lago.
Or are his voters committed to the fight with him in the lead? They can’t just be whipped on in a frenzy, with screams of “lock her up,” not if you want a nation at the end of victory. They must be inspired to reach for the greater good, inspired to exhort each other to that good. That’s leadership. It leaves something behind worth building.
Politics is important, yes. But Thanksgiving is coming, and thanking God is also important, too. And the nation needs a break. The presidential election is two years away. President Joe Biden doesn’t know what time it is, he can’t remember the time if you wrote it on his forehead. He can’t stay up late, even in crisis. And now we’re told that missiles fell in Poland and now NATO wants to ratchet us up to World War III. As we stumble ever closer to nuclear war, the rest of us could use a few days of peace, even if Biden is mercifully isolated away from world leaders and media and left to chatter to himself in a room alone.
Some of us are trying to get our minds right. Yes, there has been a lot of loud, angry politics in America, the assault on the eardrums of the middle class designed by hard Marxist left that dictates policy to the Democrats, just as in Russia years ago the Bolsheviks devoured the liberal and weaker Mensheviks. Perhaps it’s what Saul Alinsky of Chicago and his “Rules for Radicals” intended things to go for us here in this country.
And if all our hands aren’t bloody, exactly, is there a soul that has paid attention to the news and is not stained?
The Democrats called out the warclubs in the cities of 2020, in those “mostly peaceful” George Floyd BLM/Antifa that were designed to gin up the anti-police fever and whip up the anti-Trump vote. They succeeded by destroying the downtowns.
If you were a protester, you didn’t have to worry about Covid because 1,000 leading “health professionals” who had already locked down your lives, your churches, your businesses and schools in the name of science came to the rescue. In the name of science, these 1,000 “health professionals” agreed that all protesters should gather together in dense, closely packed crowds and scream their heads off at police and each other without fear of Covid.
Big city newspapers were so awestruck, they didn’t mock these 1,000 leading “health professionals” for fools. And American cities, including Chicago, have never recovered. But you’re not supposed to mention that.
And Republicans have called out the warclubs ever since, first with Trump and the presidential election, and the Jan. 6 election protest disaster, and then later President Biden trumped the Republicans by branding at least 75 million of them a bunch of no-good “semi-fascists.”
You know what you can do with people after the authoritarian in the White House stands before a blood-stained wall and accuses them all of being “semi-fascists?”
You can do anything to them. They’re not human at that point. You’ve dehumanized them. And then can burn them like witches.
Because of politics.
That’s why I’m asking for a break, to try to remember what it was like when Democrats didn’t go out of their way to hate Republicans, and Republicans didn’t go out of their way to hate Democrats.
Wait, did that happen here, in America or was that in another country?
My friend Thom Serafin of the Chicago consulting/marketing/public relations firm Serafin & Associates loves talking politics, but he knows what’s important. I’ve known him for almost 30 years, our sons were in pre-school together, and if there was ever a man who could play George Bailey from “It’s a Wonderful Life” in real life, it’s Thom Serafin.
“Politics is terrific to watch and be part of,” Serafin said as we were talking politics on an earlier edition of The Chicago Way podcast. “But we’re moving into the Thanksgiving season, we need to be grateful for our lives and our friends and put the swords down at the door. And think of each other’s well-being, and a little more love in the world. And as we get close to Christmas, we should really, really understand the season of love and hope and of living.
“It’s a much better life when you can live in peace,” Serafin said.
Put the swords at the door? OK. That’s easy for some to say, but impossible for many of us to do. And still, it must be done, if not for the good of the nation, then for the preservation of souls.
I’m not calling for a retreat, or capitulation. I’m not saying that political debate isn’t important, or that we shouldn’t push common sense policy against the crazies.
So, for example, calling school boards to account for supporting measures designed to keep parents in the dark about school discussions with their children over fundamental issues like gender and/or gender dysphoria is critically important. And the upcoming school board elections organized around this radical idea—that children don’t “belong” to educrats and woke government schools but to the parents who gave them life–is worth arguing about.
What’s also worth arguing about? How about an examination of the frenzied efforts of Democrats to make ousted Republican U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney their Patron Saint, even as Democrats ignore the fact that her father, Dick, (who had George W. as his front-man) is considered to have been the worst president in American history.
And I’m sure you have your own issues worth fighting about, but know this, the first time you use “fascist” or “Hitler” you might as well just start running out the door without the turkey or the trimmings, not even pumpkin or pecan pie, because you’re not getting any.
Some of are Americans and yet don’t care for turkey and wouldn’t know or care who to thank and for what.
But in the spirit of ecumenism, I’ll bite my tongue and offer up some other way to take a break from this constant verbal tomahawk warfare of ours. At least these are things that I’d love to do for a mental break from the constant barking of these dogs.
As I write this, with the politicians jabbering on cable news, with Trump and other politicians ready to jabber some more, I yearn for distractions without drama.
Like riding a fine horse in the snow.
Or going on a bird hunt with your brothers and your dog, remembering what was like to be a teenager with shotguns in the car in the school parking lot and not considered a threat or abnormal. Or hooking into a steelhead in a river up north.
Or reading a book by the fire with a good whiskey in hand and your dog on his favorite blanket dreaming of summer days. And watching the United States Men’s National Team at the World Cup that starts with Wales on Nov. 21, then England on “Black Friday.”
Just sitting at the kitchen table talking to my mom and my sisters-in-law on an afternoon.
And none of it politcal.
Some of you know that both of my shoulders are shot now, and I couldn’t very well hold a horse or swing a shotgun or fight a big steelhead. But I have promised myself that both shoulders will be repaired, and I will make sure that they’re limber enough to do the job.
I want to ride that horse so I can fulfill a dream of mine, call it a boy’s dream, to ride out into the Dakotas and take a hunting hawk and pointing dog out into a field, and kick up a pheasant or a rabbit and watch that hawk stretch and strike.
And set that hook into a steelhead trout in that river up north, and feel that rush of warmth running through me in that cold river, with snow on the bank behind me and Ruffed Grouse drumming in the woods on the far side.
Just a break from the screaming and the whining and the screeching, at least for Thanksgiving, with our swords and our tomahawks outside the door.
Just a few days without the drama, to take a deep breath and thank the Lord for this nation we were given, to think about Christmas and the reason for it all, and a few days to get our minds right. And then, refreshed, back into the breach. As my friend Thom says, it’s a much better life when you can live in peace.
And isn’t that what we’re fighting about?