I decided to give all of the other posts that are running around in my head a break today to talk about Memorial Day. I would imagine that many people are already starting their holiday, or if they haven’t, they will soon. Time off from work is always a good thing and I would certainly never dissuade anyone from spending time with friends and family. However, along with whatever celebration you have in mind, I would encourage you to spend a little time thinking about the terrible price of our freedom—the price paid by our sailors, marines, soldiers, and airmen. You don’t have to make an event of it—a few moments will do.
The idea behind Memorial Day (originally called Decoration Day because people decorated the tombs of the fallen) is to remember those who died in battle. The holiday began sometime around the Civil War as a means of remembering those who died in that war (both North and South) and to provide a time of healing for the country. After World War I, Memorial Day became a time to remember all those who died in service to our country and their fellow man in any war. There are many rituals associated with Memorial Day today, but really, all that anyone would ask is that you think on the cost of your freedom and who paid that price.
There is an official time to spend a moment thinking about Memorial Day. President Bill Clinton created a memorandum asking all Americans to pause for a moment at 3:00 local time to commemorate those who died. There are some suggestions on how to do this (such as playing taps), but any act of reverence—even a moment of silence is more than sufficient. If you feel so inclined, you might want to participate in a Memorial Day activity of some sort. In fact, it’s especially important to teach your children about the day because these service members died for their freedom too.
I’ll also be taking a special personal day off on Tuesday, 29 May. So, my next post will be on the 30th. See you then. In the meantime, thank you so much for taking the time to read my posts and to send comments on them.