(The following is satire)
Tuesday, November 20th, 2012,
(KANSAS CITY, MO) —“We’ll give thanks this year that. .. that … we’re giving, uh … thanks?” mutters a glum Javier Mendez, as he scours the grocery store isles for last-minute Thanksgiving Day items. Mendez found out last month he is being laid-off from his job as manager of Beckle’s Auto Traders in Kansas City, along with the rest of the private car dealers’ 32 employees, effective January 30th.
The 49-year-old Nicaraguan native came to the U.S. in 1979, escaping civil strife, disease and chronic poverty for a better life in the States. But this Thanksgiving, along with the rest of the country he has assimilated to and loves, Mendez is at a loss, unable to find a single reason to be thankful. Even more depressing: Mendez’s cynicism is not only shared among many Americans, it is official government opinion.
After months of research, the U.S. Department of Gratitude and Optimistic Affairs (DGOA ) released a dire statement Tuesday, officially declaring the United States “out of reasons to be thankful” this Thanksgiving. The independent federal agency usually lists dozens of reasons for Americans to be thankful every Turkey Day, but this year it is out of options.
“Everything from the average family’s personal wealth, to joblessness, to gas prices, to the national debt, to political hostility, to world ‘peace,’ to rising costs and regulation of healthcare, to more children coming home with failing grades, neon green hair, face tattoos, reeking like Keith Richards on a bad day … sure, people may be finding little things to be thankful for here and there, but we as a nation are officially out of reasons to be thankful,” said DGOA Administrator Lance Hennessy in a press release.
“For example,” Hennessy continued, “millions of Americans brush their teeth every day without accidently brushing so hard that they jam the toothbrush through their skulls and die. That’s something to be thankful for. Another example: most Americans have walked down city streets this year without falling through uncovered manholes. And millions of men are able to shave their whiskers in the morning without accidently decapitating themselves; tragedies that will not happen this Thanksgiving. These are certainly things to be thankful for.”
The White House is naturally finding fault with the DGOA’s assessment of America’s overall attitude. “The administration disagrees that there are no other reasons to be thankful this Thanksgiving other than that people have not decapitated themselves while shaving,” said President Obama’s Chief of Staff, Jacob Lew, to reporters Tuesday. ”…Americans are increasingly living in brighter, economically vibrant times. They’re going to have Obamacare, and Obama phones. He gave us a phone…he gonna do more. If you on food stamps, you on Social Security, you got low income, disability…”
Added Lew, “He gave us a phone. He gonna do more.”
It are the “little things” that Americans should be collectively thankful for in these rough times, said Mouni Khan, PhD, Professor of Psychology at Dartmouth University, Tuesday. Dr. Khan, an expert on treating anxiety and depression has begun working on her newest book, “What the Hell To Still Give a Damn About In the Age of Obama,” a 300 page how-to guide for uplifting one’s spirits since the President’s re-election Nov. 6th.
Said Dr. Khan to Duh Progressive, “There is no shame in, what’s the popular American expression…’downsizing’ their list of things to still be thankful for. It’s only natural when tough times and pessimism abound.”
“My own case, for instance,” Dr. Khan added, “… as a proud American I’m thankful this year that I have been able to save enough money over time to allow me to send my children to study in Singapore. With any luck, they’ll find great jobs and stay there, sparing themselves from enduring the unimaginable economic, moral, and political apocalyptic nightmare that will be America.”
But for average citizens like Javier Mendez, who fears he is living in a land slowly morphing into that which he came here to escape, this year’s Thanksgiving comes with scant joy. As the father of three children, ages 11, 12, and 17, Mendez wishes he could tell his wife and them they have more to be thankful for this year other than that no family member was maimed or killed (yet) in the process of purchasing and preparing Thanksgiving dinner.
“Nobody has been sucked down our sink’s garbage disposal while cutting peppers. Nothing has exploded. We’re all still alive, we’re healthy, and we have each other. That’s what really matters,” said a somber Mendez as he and his wife, Grace, as they stuffed the turkey for Thursday’s big meal. “It’s just sad to think next year we might not be able to afford a turkey or meal this size. But that’s okay, maybe we’ll get some help from the government. After all … he gave us a phone. He gonna do more!
Duh Progressive sincerely extends warm wishes for everyone to have a Happy Thanksgiving this year, and knows we all still have much for be grateful for. Happy Thanksgiving, America!
(The preceding is satire.)