The annual pardoning of the turkey is a White House tradition. The turkey pardoning reportedly dates back to John F. Kennedy, though it was George H.W. Bush who made it a White House tradition. The National Turkey Federation has presented the president with a turkey every year since 1947, though they weren’t always spared.
The pardoning event is usually a fun, lighthearted event, where President Obama gets an opportunity to show off his amazing wit.
This year though, Obama got serious, and took a veiled shot at Donald Trump and his alt-right supporters, telling attendees in the Rose Garden to remember that diversity is one of the America’s greatest strengths.
At the event in the Rose Garden, Obama said, “Thanksgiving is also a reminder of the source of our national strength, that out of many we are one, and we’re not bound by any one race or religion but rather by an adherence to a common creed that all of us are created equal. And while accepting our differences and building a diverse society has never been easy, it has never been more important. We are people that look out for one another and get each other’s backs. We keep moving forward defined by values and ideals that have been a light to all humanity.”
Obama did end up being his funny self, and said, “Malia and Sasha, by the way, are thankful that this is my final presidential turkey pardon. What I haven’t told them yet is that we are gonna do this every year from now on. No cameras, just us every year. No way I’m cutting this habit cold turkey.”
WE ARE GOING TO MISS THIS MAN!!