Memorial Day – The Right Reason to Celebrate
By: Guest Authors
By: Dorothy M Smith
‘A citizen of America will cross the ocean to fight for democracy, but won’t cross the street to vote in a national election.’ – Bill Vaughan
It cannot be said for sure if Bill Vaughan’s is tongue-in-cheek or dark humor. However, there is no doubt that patriotism has lost much of its fervor due to lack of faith on governments which run the country. Young men and women are shying away from responsibilities towards the country. They do not feel that sense of belonging or that will to redress that was so distinctly dominant in their ancestors. That has become very obvious if you take in the surveys conducted by research organizations. The youngsters do not want to get involved; they are frankly indifferent; they take their freedom for granted.
Against this backdrop, patriotic events like Memorial Day have become ideologically hollow. They have become mere occasions of celebration, fanfare and an excuse to stay away from the cube. They welcome the day with all the wrong reasons. There are social gatherings, there are festivities. But where is the spirit? That is hopelessly lacking.
Memorial Day is celebrated to commemorate the heroic soldiers who have died fighting for their country. It started when a day was set aside to pay respects to soldiers who have died fighting in the American Civil War. Then it was extended to honor soldiers who have died in the course of the First World War. Finally, Memorial Day is when you remember and honor soldiers who have died fighting for their country. The day is observed by visits to cemeteries and memorials. The traditional time for remembrance is 3:00 pm U.S. Eastern time. Another custom is to hoist the national flag at half-mast from dawn till noon. People go out for picnic as some consider the day to be the first day of spring. The overall mood is one of gaiety and vigor.
However, it would not be safe to write on the wall that patriotism is dead. There are parents who are sending out their sons, sometimes their only son, to fight and die for the honor and pride of the country. There are young men who are willing to lay down their lives at a word from the chief commander who may not necessarily be the best judge of what to do. There are women who are still waiting for their children and husbands to return from their foreign military posting. Their wait may never come to and end. There are children who have seen their father go out to protect the dignity of the country and die for it, bringing misery in to the household. They have spent their childhood without the security and protection of a father, but with their head held high in a free country. And they are willing to take the mantle upon themselves to protect the independence and pride of their country. There are people who touch their hearts with pride when the national anthem is being played.
The feeling of patriotism cannot be instilled. You either have it or you don’t. Memorial day is the right opportunity to check that out. If you want to celebrate the face that you are a free human being, do that. Pay a solemn respect to those heroic creeds of people who have made this day possible, though they have themselves not been able to bask in the glory of their achievement.
Dorothy Smith, the author of this article, writes about the events & special occasions. Want to know more about Memorial Day or Memorial Day Ecards? Celebrate Memorial Day by sending free Memorial Day Greetings and other Memorial Day Links