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MEMORIAL DAY IS A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE, NOT CELEBRATION
Thought this opinion piece was worth sharing. It explains Memorial Day and gives instructions how to properly observe it.
From Coffee Or Die Magazine regarding Memorial Day. Some of the points:
For too many Americans, Memorial Day is little more than a three-day weekend, a holiday in May marking the unofficial beginning of summer. The long weekend is filled with pool parties, first-of-the-year barbecues, and, of course, retail bargains. This, not to put too fine a point on it, is wrong.
Memorial Day was created as a remembrance to honor the fallen by decorating graves — a holiday meant to provide a pause so we could remember those who have given the most they could give in the name of freedom.
It doesn’t help that Memorial Day comes right at the kickoff to summer, a time for warmth and parades and the return of the sun after the bleakness of winter.
But the general population isn’t entirely to blame for not recognizing the day’s significance. They’ve been conditioned by decades of advertising and deep discounts for everything you can imagine, especially big-ticket items like home appliances. Memorial Day has essentially been rebranded by companies that cash in on any and every holiday to boost sales.
This isn’t about a 30% off mattress sale,” Hafer said. “BRCC never has and never will profit from Memorial Day, and it’s immoral for any company even to make a dollar off this day of remembrance.
Marines with 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, salute during the playing of taps during a memorial ceremony, April 29, 2011, at Camp Pendleton, California. Moments before, the Marines fired a 21-gun salute in honor of the 25 fallen warriors of the battalion. US Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Ned Johnson, 1st Marine Division.
Where Memorial Day Comes From
The Civil War had claimed more lives than any other conflict in US history, and was also the reason for establishing the country’s first national cemeteries. The death toll for the Civil War, estimated at 620,000, is equal to the American fatalities for the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican War, the Spanish American War, World War I, World War II, and the Korean War — combined.
But it was not yet an official national holiday. Different municipalities and states adopted their own Decoration Day. Waterloo, New York, was one of many towns that closed all businesses, and residents took the time to decorate soldiers’ graves with flowers and flags.
What’s the Difference Between Memorial Day and Veterans Day?
Memorial Day and Veterans Day are often confused because they’re both about the military. However, Veterans Day in November is a celebration of those who signed on the dotted line and were willing to risk it all for the freedoms enjoyed in the United States.
In contrast, Memorial Day is a day of remembrance to honor those who died for our country.
“How you honor Memorial Day, whether it’s with family at a barbecue or friends at a grave, it doesn’t matter,” Luke Peelgrane, BRCC’s vice president of media, said. “What matters is that you take the time to remember why you’re here, why you’re able to spend a day with family and friends peacefully and safely — it’s because of the sacrifices of others.”
Memorial Day From the Eyes of a Veteran
There is a seismic difference between what Memorial Day means to the military community and what corporate America has turned it into. In a way, corporate America has stolen the meaning of Memorial Day from the military community and bastardized it into a shopping adventure.
On Memorial Day, we must stand united as a nation to honor and remember the indomitable spirit of sacrifice that flows through the veins of our heroes,” said Mat Best, BRCC co-founder and US Army Ranger veteran. “It is a day when we humbly acknowledge the immeasurable cost paid by those brave souls who selflessly laid down their lives so that we may cherish the freedoms we hold dear.
Their sacrifice echoes through the annals of history, resonating in the hearts of grateful generations. They fought not for personal glory or gain, but for the ideals of liberty, justice, and the pursuit of a brighter future. They bore the weight of duty, shouldering the burden of protecting our nation's honor, and paid the highest cost. For that, we are forever thankful, and we will never forget.
Memorial Day can be difficult for those who have lost friends and loved ones to their time in service. If grieving or finding ways to process grief takes precedence over a cookout for either you or someone you know, find ways to take time for yourself, set boundaries, or talk to someone who will listen.
Again, this is the link to the whole article which expounds on what I briefly placed here.
There is nothing wrong with getting together with family and friends for Memorial Day. It is definitely not a celebration! Take some time as a group to reflect on how much it cost for you to even be able to gather freely in the first place!
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