Presidential Pardon, Dispensation, Thanksgiving


By —— Bio and Archives November 22, 2012

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‘Father Barack Obama‘  mocked the Sign of the Cross at the White House yesterday. 

It was an open mockery of the Christian prayer that is accompanied by the immortal words used by peasants and kings over the centuries: “In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit”.

Obama, who is left-handed,  made the sign of the cross with his left hand, which out of respect for the centuries-long Christian practice, no one ever does.

Obama’s left-handed sign of the cross was made over a gobbling turkey during the National Thanksgiving Turkey Presentation Ceremony, that takes place at the White House every year shortly before Thanksgiving, having been resurrected by George H.W. Bush in 1989. 

Obama departed from the usual “presidential pardon” granting the turkey a “special dispensation” in words as he twice made his left-handed Sign of the Cross.

There were lots of giggles from the two Obama daughters and lots of gobbling from the turkey recorded during the ceremony now on YouTube.

Clearly using his left hand for all to see, Obama made the Sign of the Cross backwards.

Pagan and fairytale like in concept, beginning in 2005 presidential “pardoned” birds were sent to Disneyland to live, and served as the “honorary grand marshal” of that year’s Thanksgiving Day parade, following concerns raised by animals rights objections that the birds had not survived for long.

“For the previous 15 years they had been sent to Frying Pan Park near Herndon, Virginia. (Wikipedia).  “Names were generally chosen in online votes taken at the White House website.”

“In 2010 and 2011, the turkeys were sent to live at Mount Vernon, the estate and home of George Washington.

“The origins of the tradition of pardoning the White House turkey are unclear.  Many credit President Harry Truman with starting the informal and lighthearted tradition in 1947.  However, the Truman Library says that no documents, speeches, newspaper clippings, photographs or other contemporary records are known to exist that specify that he ever “pardoned” a turkey.  The Eisenhower Presidential Library says documents in their collection reveal that President Dwight Eisenhower ate the birds presented to him during his two terms.  President John F. Kennedy spontaneously spared a turkey on Nov. 18, 1963, just four days before his assassination, but did not grant a ‘pardon’. 

“Presidential pardoned turkeys are to be are raised in the same fashion as turkeys designated for slaughter,  but are selected “at birth” for pardoning and are trained to handle loud noises, flash photography and large crowds.  Because most Thanksgiving turkeys are bred and raised for size at the expense of longer life, they are prone to health problems associated with obesity such as heart disease, respiratory failure and joint damage.  As a result of these factors, most of the pardoned turkeys have very short lives.  After their pardoning, frequently dying within a year of being pardoned.”

Why Obama would choose the Thanksgiving Turkey Ceremony to mock the Sign of the Cross two weeks after his reelection is anybody’s guess.

But many will be asking is making a left-handed Sign of the Cross amid giggles and gobbles a mockery only a Muslim would make?



Judi McLeod -- Bio and Archives | Comments

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Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years’ experience in the print media. A former Toronto Sun columnist, she also worked for the Kingston Whig Standard. Her work has appeared on Rush Limbaugh, Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, and Glenn Beck.

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