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Editorial: Reflect on the good today

It has been a busy year. Emerging from the pandemic, dealing with inflation and navigating an election are just some of the experiences we have all embarked on together. There's always room for improvement. But Thanksgiving is a day to reflect on what we do have and to consider those around us who might also be in need.

Community and support are more critical now than ever before as loneliness rips through the fabric our society. Take time today to connect with someone you know or a stranger who might need a kind word.

And take some time, even a moment, to celebrate the good.

We can be thankful that after Election Day candidate advertisements are off the air. More importantly, we can appreciate that elections have again concluded with our national and statewide institutions intact.

While some are undoubtedly discontent with the election results, our democratic system continues to flourish. We should be thankful for all of our state and nation's newly-elected leaders and hold them to uphold their oaths to the people of our state and nation. 

And we can be grateful that we can vote them out in a few years if they do not. 

We can also be thankful that many in our nation have jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we’ve reached the pre-pandemic unemployment rate. October's national jobless rate was 3.7%, up only slightly from September’s 3.5%.

Michigan's economy continues to rebound from the effects of the pandemic, and workers here should have no problem finding employment. Though prices have risen, we're grateful to not see widespread layoffs throughout the economy.

Let's also be grateful that despite turbulence, the stock market hasn’t crashed. In recent weeks, cryptocurrency company FTX went down in Chapter 11 bankruptcy flames and took with it the savings of American customers who may never see any of their investments. Despite a bear market, there have been hopeful predictions and, at times, a rallying market.

We are even grateful the Detroit Lions have been able to win some games this season. We're happy to take what wins we can and hope for better the next time.

But perhaps we can be most grateful that this year people can once again freely come together and spend time with each other, one of life's greatest blessings.

As President Ronald Reagan said of Thanksgiving in 1985:

"While entire nations must endure the yoke of tyranny, we are free to speak our minds, to enjoy an unfettered and vigorous press, and to make government abide by the limits we deem just. While millions live behind walls, we remain free to travel throughout the land to share this precious day with those we love most deeply – the members of our families."