n case you’ve been living under a rock for the past month, last Friday marked the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It was an event that left an indelible mark on a generation of Americans, and I know there are many who are still fascinated by talk of conspiracy theories and cover-ups. Between you and me, I can only take so much conjecture about grassy knolls, book depositories, and multiple gunmen. Mercifully, this isn’t why I’m bringing up our 35th President — I actually have a Thanksgiving-related reason.
Turkeys have been presented to the President by the National Turkey Federation since 1947. Back then, the President would get one live turkey and two dressed birds, ready to eat. The tradition of pardoning a turkey wasn’t made a permanent annual tradition until President Bush I in 1989. His predecessor, President Reagan, was actually the first to grant a presidential pardon, doing so jokingly so as to deflect questions about the Iran-Contra affair (sly dog).
You may already know where I’m going with this, but I love stories about how traditions get started. In 1963, JFK spared his turkey, but not as a publicity stunt. He thought the bird was a little undersized, so he said they should take it back to the farm and “let this one grow.” A week ago Monday, November 18th, was the 50th anniversary of this first “unofficial” turkey pardoning.
So here’s where I try to bring all this back around to small business lending and why you should work with us, right?
Not this time. Just an interesting bit of history as we all get ready to do Thanksgiving tomorrow. I hope you’re able to spend the time with family and friends — people you care about and who care about you. And I hope you eat ungodly amounts of food (I know I will, no matter how much self-control I try to muster).
Happy Thanksgiving to You and Yours!