The Meaning of Memorial Day



Cub Scouts decorating the graves of deceased soldiers.

by Rosalie Hanson

According to Wikipedia, Memorial Day is a U.S. federal holiday wherein the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces are remembered. The holiday was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. Memorial Day should not be confused with Veterans Day, which is the day we honor all living Veterans who served in our Armed Forces.

Some people don’t appreciate the phrase “Happy Memorial Day” because it is supposed to be a somber day of honoring the dead and who could be happy about that? Personally, I really don’t mind people celebrating Memorial Day shopping for sales or having a BBQ with family and friends. After all, America is about Freedom and the right to choose how we live our lives. Men and women died so that we could live free and what better way to honor them but by actually doing so as long as we don’t forget why we have this luxury! In my opinion, wishing someone a Happy Memorial Day means you want them to go out and enjoy the fact that they are FREE.

No truer words were ever stated than when President Ronald Reagan pointed out “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same”. We have to be “taught” what America stands for or else we will lose it.

Thankfully, my parents raised me to be a REAL American and to appreciate what this great Country has to offer and what the cost is for us to remain Free.

But I am sorry to say that I worry if my generation has done its Patriotic Duty to pass the freedom baton to the next generation of Americans.

When I hear Americans saying that America needs to be Fundamentally Transformed, I ask in stunned disbelief Fundamentally Transformed into what? America is the greatest Nation in the World, where everyone is free and opportunities abound.

The most amazing thing to me is when I think that there are over 300 million American Citizens and we all have one common denominator that makes us “ONE” and that is called our Constitution.

America has been governed under this one document for more than 230 years. Each and every American citizen has the same rights because of this incredible document that starts off with the three most powerful words ever spoken: We, the People.

Why would we want to “fundamentally transform” something that has worked brilliantly for more than 230 years?

National Cemeteries are filled with past Americans who fought against fundamentally transforming America. That is why we have Memorial Day – to honor these people who died so that others could live free. Does the next generation understand this, and if not, where did we go wrong?

On this Memorial Day, I know that there are millions of Real Americans who stand with me but I worry about the others who seems to think “transforming” America into a socialized society will be better than living free!

So on this Memorial Day I wish everyone a Happy Memorial Day! Enjoy this gift of freedom that others have given you because tomorrow it could possibly be gone. I say to those who wish to “fundamentally transform” America, Please don’t trade away your freedom for free-stuff. America is only one generation away from extinction. Don’t let it be on your watch.

Decoration Day_2