Feature: Soapbox Musings

Americans Need a Lesson on Why We Observe Memorial Day - Page 2

Author: Scott Gulbransen
Published: May 30, 2011 at 7:22 pm

It's unfortunate that so many know so little about why we celebrate some of our most important holidays in this great nation. What's worse is when you challenge people to know why, they simply shrug it off and say "at least I mean well."

To me, that's not enough. Too many men and women have given their lives to make it possible for me to publish this post. Too many have been orphaned - kids left fatherless, motherless; parents left son-less or daughter-less; wives and husbands widowed so we may all be free.

Memorial Day should be a solemn day. It should not be 4th of July-like celebration. It should be a day of reflection and thanks for those who never made it home. We should remember them and their families who never had the warm homecoming and seeing their loved one again.

As Americans, as we fight for the preservation of education in our kids classroom. Yet most of them don't even learn the basics. Let's make it a priority to not confront our ignorant neighbors, but instead educating them so that next year, they celebrate Memorial Day for the right reasons.

I recall the opening paragraph of President Ronald Reagan's 1986 Memorial Day speech at Arlington National Cemetery:

"Today is the day we put aside to remember fallen heroes and to pray that no heroes will ever have to die for us again. It’s a day of thanks for the valor of others, a day to remember the splendor of America and those of her children who rest in this cemetery and others. It’s a day to be with the family and remember."

A day to be with family and remember. That's far from celebration. It's more about reflection.

Thank you to all of you who died so I may be free. Another reminder, freedom is never free.


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Article Author: Scott Gulbransen

Scott Gulbransen is the Director of Social Media at tax giant H&R Block and is an avid blogger. He is the co-founder and a contributor at Every Other Thursday, a Dad's blog, and and also writes about social media, business and public relations at ScottGulbransen.com. …

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