Not exactly a Thanksgiving message, but what I quote below is from E.M Forster, a writer, and man I greatly admire. His Aspects of the Novel, is a fundamental primer for anyone interesting in writing a novel.
I do not know where this comes from in his voluminous work, but I am happy to pass it on as a Thanksgiving (or any day) thought.
“I believe in aristocracy, though—if that is the right word, and if a democrat may use it. Not an aristocracy of power, based upon rank and influence, but an aristocracy of the sensitive, the considerate and the plucky. Its members are to be found in all nations and classes, and all through the ages, and there is a secret understanding between them when they meet. They represent the true human tradition, the one permanent victory of our queer race over cruelty and chaos. Thousands of them perish in obscurity, a few are great names. They are sensitive for others as well as themselves, they are considerate without being fussy, their pluck is not swankiness but power to endure, and they can take a joke.”