No doubt about it — we all love Memorial Day. I mean, what’s not to like? This day officially kicks off the summer season and nobody can find fault with that! Then there are the picnics with family and friends, outdoor games, and hunting for the best sales at malls, discount stores and big box retailers.
But like we say every year in this spot, Memorial Day is so much more than overeating, having fun and seeing how much money you can save on the newest technology.
Memorial Day started as a holiday to remember the fallen during the Civil War. It was enacted as an honorable day of remembrance because the War Between the States was the bloodiest and most deadly conflict we ever experienced on our own soil. Our new and fragile country was at war with itself.
Expanding on the definition of Memorial Day, think about the men and women who put their lives on the line for our country. Despite their bold decisions and actions, some considered George Washington, Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson as traitors! Rosa Parks and Harriet Tubman showed great courage at personal risk in order to advance human rights. And every single day, we have firefighters, police and military personnel protecting our country’s freedom and the safety of its citizens. For these heroes, danger is never more than a moment away.
On this day, we honor those who lost their lives in the line of duty, as well as those who stand up for the U.S., and those that are willing to fight to make ours a stronger and better nation.
The United States needs these strong and nurturing citizens in order to remain strong. We — all of us — should never take our liberties for granted. It’s our responsibility to remember that freedom is not free, and a price must be paid to maintain that fragile concept.
Take a moment over this weekend to remember the price that many have been paid for our liberty. The hotdogs can wait.