Monday, May 25, 2009

A Moment to Reflect is not asking too much, is it?

Memorial Day...., no it's not a day that was created to run to the stores for various sales and shopping junkets.
It's not a celebration of the unofficial start of summer, nor the celebration of the petroleum industry of being able to gouge many Americans as they fill up there gas tank in their cars.

Wait a week or two and the price will plummet 10 to 20 cents per gallon, for some strange reason.

Memorial Day is not the only day where people get together , drink too much and eat one too many hot dogs, and wind up being sick and not showing up for work the next day. Even though or Mexican friends seem to have many Memorial Day festivities through the year were they also do not show up for work.
Most of the time it starts a day or two before a holiday and lasts up to several days after.....but that's another subject.

Memorial Day should not be a party day, even though it has turned out to be, it is a solemn day where we should be stopping and reflecting on sacrifices.

The utmost sacrifice that a human can do for their other humans, that of giving up their life fighting for the concept of freedom and honor!

Three years after the Civil War ended, on May 5, 1868, the head of an organization of Union veterans — the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) — established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers.

Maj. Gen. John A. Logan declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30. It is believed that date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.

The first large observance was held that year at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.

The ceremonies centered around the mourning-draped veranda of the Arlington mansion, once the home of Gen. Robert E. Lee. Various Washington officials, including Gen. and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, presided over the ceremonies.

After speeches, children from the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphan Home and members of the GAR made their way through the cemetery, strewing flowers on both Union and Confederate graves, reciting prayers and singing hymns.

Today, cities in the North and the South claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day in 1866. Both Macon and Columbus, Georgia., claim the title, as well as Richmond, Virginia. The village of Boalsburg, Pennsylvania., claims it began there two years earlier.

Approximately 25 places have been named in connection with the origin of Memorial Day, many of them in the South where most of the war dead were buried.

So before you smear the mustard on the hot dog, or shake the bottle of salsa on the fresh carnitas taco, think of what our predecessors, for all countries, near and far have done. This is the day to sit down, explain to the young generations the relevance of what and how important the memorial day is, especially in this day and age of the disappearance of freedoms.

Lest not forget the reasoning of why these brave souls gave up their lives, and attempt to curtail any actions by anyone who may want to disrespect the fallen soldiers.


American Mommy in Mexico said...

Well said amigo.

Bob Mrotek said...

I come from Logan Square in Chicago which is named after John "Black Jack" Logan who began "Decoration Day" in Carbondale, Illionois.

Bob Mrotek said...

Oops, I mean Illinois :)

Constantino said...

I take my hat of to you Bob, you know and practice your history! Both here and the US!
I wonder how many present Chicagonians know who Logan Square was named after?

Steve Cotton said...

Very well said. My mother is traveling through Oregon this weekend decorating the graves of family members who fought for their country -- and our liberty. I wanted to accompany her, along with my brother, this year. I fear that I do not know the stories she knows. And, as Bob so properly points out, unless history is recalled, we lose our connection with it. Symbols become names. Valor becomes merely another noun.

Bob Mrotek said...

John Logan was also a patron of a famous "cyclorama" which is a painting formed in a circle of about 100 yards in diameter. Objects of different scale are placed around inside the circle of the cyclorama giving the painting a three dimensional quality. The viewer stands in the middle of the circle and turns around 360 degrees to view the cyclorama. Logan's cyclorama is in Atlanta Georgia and if you ever get the opportunity to see it don't miss the chance. I guarantee that you have never see anything like it. It is incredible!

Anonymous said...

thank you for your post. it was very well written and is much appreciated. my husband was in the navy for 21 years and my son served as a u.s. marine in iraq. our little town of lake stevens has a war memorial and every year they have a ceremony on memorial day. that's where i was this morning. sadly, my son lost a friend in iraq, he was only 19, also a marine.

thank you again amigo for paying tribute to the fallen and reminding others of what this holiday really means.


Constantino said...

Teresa, Thank you for having a son who served his country. Sadly not all appreciate his and his friend's unselfish actions, do in the security of our world!
Patriotism has become passe' sadly we only remember the sacrifices when shaken or jolted into realization!
Bless your son and our Armed Service personnel.

Anonymous said...

thank you for your kind words. you're so right about patriotism. i'm originally from cuba and i am ever so grateful to live in a country where i have my freedom.

God Bless America


ac said...

thanks Ken.
Well said.