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Thanksgiving. 2009. Not for Some Animals.

It's going to be the day to give thanks very soon, but not for some beings. Their slaughter, unfortunately, is a requisite for many families in America, turning the hapless turkey into the centerpiece of their thanks-giving. I remember as late as the 1970s when some of my friends and acquaintances frowned at my idea of doing a Thanksgiving dinner without the turkey. I wasn't into animal welfare yet at that time. True to my iconoclastic nature, I just thought that the tradition was to give thanks, and not the turkey on the table. So, my family had many Thanksgiving dinners/lunches without the turkey while my so-called friends accused me on trashing a cherished tradition and setting a bad example and a terrible precedent for my then young son. Well, if one is comfortable with a tradition and it fits well into his/her personal philosophy, then so be it and be happy with it. However, there are no limits on tradition and new traditions are born all the time.

As for those Thanksgiving dinners of the past, my family opted to served some Filipino dishes at home, sometimes partaking in a Japanese buffet or some Italian cuisine minus the yams, the cranberry sauce, and the bird. All these done in the spirit of giving thanks for the good life we have enjoyed so far. Let there be no one to accuse me of being a lesser American because I chose to give thanks in a non-traditional way. America culture is ever-changing because her demographics are ever-changing. Diversity is our strength, and not our liability. Since I became an animal rights proponent, it has become even clearer how absurd some traditions are...

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