Politics

Rep. Todd Akin: The Pilgrims Came To America To Flee ‘Unbiblical’ Socialism In The 1620’s

Today, millions of Americans celebrate Thanksgiving with their families. To mark this holiday, Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) took to the floor of the House of Representatives on Tuesday to explain its history. At one point, he opined, “It might be helpful to think back and say there’s more to Thanksgiving than the Pilgrims.” He explained that they were “a group of people who were willing to change the system, to think of different ideas.” Akin continued, “They came here with the idea that after trying socialism that it wasn’t going to work. They realized that it was unbiblical, that it was a form of theft, so they pitched socialism out. They learned that in the 1620s”:

AKIN: It might be helpful to think back and say, there’s more to Thanksgiving than the Pilgrims. They were a group of people who were willing to change the system, to think of different ideas. They came here and separated civil and church governments. They came here and created the model of a written constitution, the idea that the government should be the servant of the people. […] They came here with the idea that after trying socialism that it wasn’t going to work. They realized that it was unbiblical, that it was a form of theft, so they pitched socialism out. They learned that in the early 1620’s.

Watch it:

Of course, the Pilgrims did not come to America to flee socialism and embrace capitalism “in the early 1620’s.” Socialism as an idea didn’t really even come into popularization until the 18th century and socialist political parties did not start to gain power and influence policies until more than a century after that. And it is difficult to see how socialism is unbiblical, given that the concept did not exist at the time of the writing of the Bible.

The real reason the Pilgrims came to the New World was to flee religious persecution. Thanksgiving is based around remembrance of the tale of how, in 1621, Native Americans helped the Pilgrims at Plymouth Colony survive harsh conditions by sharing their food with them. In other words, Thanksgiving is a parable about how people should take care of eachother and not just look out for themselves.