While my husband was at work yesterday (Sunday, May 26th) a fellow coworker says to him, "What is Memorial Day?" The coworker did not ask my husband because he didn't know what it was, nor did the coworker think my husband was that stupid. But of course my husband answers him with the answer of to honor those who have fought for our freedoms. The coworker says "then why do some many people NOT know that, why do they think it’s just a long weekend, a time to BBQ or the first day of summer." Heart breaking isn't it? It seems the younger the person the less they know about this country as a whole.
I am from New York State. Not the city but grew up 90 minutes north in the valley of the mountains. In elementary school we learned all about the Erie Canal. We learned songs about it and the importance of the canal to the state. I took a college course a couple of semesters ago about the history of New York State. I was very sad to see that more than half the class knew nothing about the Erie Canal (or anything about the state). I now live literally 5 minutes walking distance from a part of the canal and my fellow classmates all lived (and most were born) in this area. An area that is extremely rich in state history.
Another thing that is disturbing to me is to see so many news reports of people messing up the Star Spangled Banner. REALLY!?!?! Well besides the fact the a good singer would take the time to learn ANY song before singing it in front of a crowd people, but its the national anthem. When I was in middle school the music teacher drilled it into our heads. We had to learn it. It is not an easy song to sing when it comes to the notes, but really we can't take the time to learn the words.
I went to a couple of my local cemeteries today to say Thank you, to appreciate all that they did for me and generations to come. I was pleased to see so many others there today to. I took my daughters with me (9 & 5), we discussed why they do not have school today. What the day is about. We look at each soldiers stone talked about the branches they fought with and where the fought (if it was on the stone). We talked about great grandfathers and their roles in the wars they fought in. We talked, we respected, we were thankful. Now I know the 5 year old probably forgot the conversation less than 5 minutes after it was over. My 9 year old will forget by next Memorial Day but we will be out there again next year giving our thanks.
So thank you to all the men, women and children who have fought for the freedoms of this country. Without all that they have sacrificed who knows how we would be today. Thank you to the current men and women who still put their lives on the line for this country.