Communism Rejected on Thanksgiving
By Carole Hornsby Haynes, Ph.D. November 21, 2023 Adapted from original publication by American Thinker
In 2021 our nation celebrated the 400th anniversary of the first Thanksgiving of the Pilgrims who had arrived on November 11, 1620 on the Mayflower with 102 passengers -- men, women and children. They came as families to set up a society of self government with freedom to practice their own religion without fear of persecution from the English government or its church. This brave community laid the foundations for the United States of America.
Blown off course, the Mayflower arrived in what is now Provincetown Harbor where 41 men signed the Mayflower Compact, a covenant of self-rule that birthed American liberty. A precursor to the U.S. Constitution, the Compact was essentially the cornerstone of self-government under God which has made America unique among nations.
From there the ship sailed on to modern day Plymouth, Massachusetts where they founded the Plymouth Colony in the middle of December.
American Indians Taught the Pilgrims Survival Skills
That first winter the settlers faced incredible suffering with disease, severe cold, starvation, and desolation. Out of the original 102 passengers, only about 52 survived including four women and their first elected governor of the colony, John Carver.
In early spring 1621, the Pilgrims entered into a treaty with the Wampanoag Indian tribe’s leader, Massasoit. Squanto, a member of the Patuxet band of the Wampanoag tribe, had been captured by earlier settlers but freed by Catholic friars and taken to England where he learned to speak English. He became an interpreter on an English ship in 1618 and returned to the New World where he taught the Pilgrims how to grow crops in the hard rocky New England soil.
Sometime in the fall of 1621 the Pilgrims, together with Massasoit and 90 members of his tribe, held a three-day harvest festival of thanksgiving, feasting, and entertainment with athletic events of shooting, foot races, wrestling, and bow and arrow.
Pilgrims Tried Communism
One of the more familiar stories in American history is the disastrous experiment in a communal social and economic structure in the Plymouth Colony from 1621-1623. The communal lifestyle in the colony resembled a socialist society.
The colony’s storehouse, houses, gardens, and other improved land were all shared. No one could own private land or work at a private business because of their business deal with their investors. The colonists collectively cleared and worked the land. Many worked hard to provide for their families and lay up stores for the winter while others sloughed off, knowing they would receive equal shares from the single pot regardless of how little they worked.
Anger and resentment grew among those who did the lion’s share of the work so they became less willing to work. As a result, the colony could not produce enough food to feed everyone.
Pilgrims Rejected Communism For Free Enterprise and Private Property
After two years of living under communism, only a few of the original Plymouth colonists were still alive. By 1626, to avoid an extinction of the colony and provide a solution for repayment to their investors, a new system with private property rights and the right to keep one's production -- free enterprise – was implemented by Governor William Bradford, one of the signers of the Mayflower Compact and the second elected governor of the colony. Each family was assigned personal plots of farm land according to family size and the common storehouse was abolished. Immediately men and women returned to the harvest fields and produced a large harvest.
Land ownership became a priority of the early settlers. For more than 50 years colonial villages tried to survive under the common ownership system without success. Each village found that private ownership of the means of production was the most economically profitable and the most efficient way to accomplish the Christian goals of social peace. Gradually the communal system gave way to private property rights.
The concept of the family farm grew out of combining personal responsibility with private property rights. It was the tradition of the independent small farmer that heavily influenced the political philosophy of Thomas Jefferson. The superiority of individual responsibility over that of government about the best use of land became a fundamental principle of 18thand 19thcentury American life and the American dream.
400 Years Later, Americans Try Communism Again
It was the fierce spirit of personal responsibility, liberty, and private property rights that laid the foundation for the principles of limited government, personal freedom, and a competitive free marketplace that have brought us great prosperity.
Now America is moving in the opposite direction – back toward a socialist society that our forefathers rejected. We’re seeing the misery and problems faced by every society that has tried socialism.
As we celebrate Thanksgiving in 2023, America again is experiencing a crisis due to the government progressively implementing Marxist policies. Beginning in 2021 we have been seeing a disruption of the supply chain, skyrocketing inflation, scarce supply of goods, and what’s left is difficult for middle-class families to afford. Since 2021, prices for the most basic of commodities that Americans rely on daily have surged by 17.1%.
The Farm Bureau’s 38th annual survey shows that the cost of Thanksgiving dinner is down 4.5% over historically high prices in 2022 but still 25% higher compared to 2019, prior to the pandemic. Although the centerpiece on most Thanksgiving tables – turkey – is down 5.6%, there was a 21% increase in 2022. In their comparison of regional prices, the Farm Bureau reported that the cost for the classic Thanksgiving of turkey was lowest in the Midwest ($58.66) and South ($59.10) and highest in the blue state areas of the West ($63.89) and Northeast ($64.38).
This is a precursor of what is yet to come if America falls to Communism. We can look at Venezuela right here in our own hemisphere to see how this Satanic ideology has brought famine, poverty and even death to a country that was once the richest nation in South America and one of the 20 richest in the world. Venezuela has the world’s largest proven oil reserves of 300 billion barrels but now produces little oil because of the policies of Marxist president Chavez and his successor, current president Maduro. Between 2012 and 2022, the GDP plummeted around 250 percent. Although the state unofficially claimed a 7.3% rate, Bloomberg estimated the unemployment rate to be more than 44% with an expected increase to 50%. Abject poverty pervades the nation with 94.5%of the population living below the poverty line on $3.20 a day.
Paulo Velasco, author of Venezuela and Chavism in Perspective, notes that the plight of the people is worse than anywhere else on the planet, even more than in African nations. “It’s the worst economic and humanitarian crisis ever recorded in Latin America, and there were many.”
Americans Reject Communism On Thanksgiving Day
This is not the future that Americans want for our nation and our families. Whether or not America survives as a free nation depends upon our willingness to fight – literally if necessary – the Marxists to stop their takeover of our government and every aspect of American society. As we give thanks to our Creator this Thursday, let us pray for strength and resolve for the war ahead.