For this one day, let’s all just be thankful

The sun rises over the Mississippi Sound.
The sun rises over the Mississippi Sound. Sun Herald file

We believe most Americans would agree this has been a contentious, sometimes brutal, year.

It began with the inauguration of President Donald Trump to begin a presidency that millions refused to accept. And the president has done little to win them over and much to lose the support of many who voted for him. His tweets often are less than presidential and frequently antagonistic.

He has picked fights with the media, with sports leagues, with college basketball players. He has belittled the intelligence community and the judiciary. His administration has taken stances hurtful to LGBTQ people. He threatens Mexicans with a border wall and Middle Eastern Muslims with a travel ban.

But we also have many problems that transcend a single leader or political parties.

There have been too many horrendous mass shootings. Yet we remain divided on the cause and cure.

We have awakened to a nationwide opioid epidemic.

We are in the midst of a burgeoning sexual harassment scandal.

But we remain optimistic.

The nation survived vicious and violent protests and counter protests over the Vietnam War. It came through the violence and murder of the civil rights era a better country.

And we’ll emerge from these present trials a stronger nation. Because at our core, we are good people.

And that is what should be on display as we gather with friends and family Thursday for Thanksgiving — the best of America and the best of ourselves.

In South Mississippi, we have much to give us hope, much to be thankful for. Our national economy and the stock market continues humming along. We live in one of the most beautiful parts of the United States. Coast seafood. Barbecue. Great authors such as the Coast’s Jesmyn Ward. Rock ‘n’ roll and the blues, music with deep ties to Mississippi. Freedom to worship and hundreds of churches to choose from. And our contributions to a strong national defense: Keesler Air Force Base, the Seabee Base, Ingalls Shipbuilding, Stennis Space Center and many others.

Yes, as we gather, we should remember that as troubled as it is, America gives us much to be thankful for. We should remember that most Americans agree we should strive for a better future for our families and friends. And that we are at our best when we find common ground, common goals. When we are truly the United States.

Yes, perhaps a truly united United States is a lofty ideal, but it is a worthy one. And it’s not one we’re ready to give up on.

The editorial represents the views of the Sun Herald editorial board. Opinions of columnists and cartoonists are their own.