Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day. A day to remember and honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice defending the United States of America. Being that I am a history/social studies teacher, here is a quick Memorial Day lesson.  Memorial Day was originally called "Decoration Day" and was first created to honor all those who died in the Civil War. Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan, general of the Union army and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war). It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971, to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states still have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead. 
We enjoy an amazing amount of liberties here in the USA. What allows that? Well, it is the men and women fighting and dying to protect our country and to protect our rights. Today is a day that can not pass without us giving some time to think about what today means and why we have it. It is a day that we must be conscious of and be appreciative of. We tend to take a lot of things for granted in America (myself included) but please, stop and think about all the people who have died for this country. Find a war veteran. Talk to them. Thank them. Be a good American and show respect and honor for all those who died protecting you. 

1 comment:

BEAST MODE(aka-ari) said...

Sorry late but i thank them alot for them fighting for us and keeping us safe or well at least trying to>they are brave men and women fighting for our lives that is really kool in my world