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Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day. Seems a bit odd to many of us to see or hear this phrase. I suppose it could be argued that one could or should be happy, knowing so many of our fellow citizens were willing to sacrifice their own lives for the benefit of the ones they left behind. After all, that’s what Memorial Day is - a day to honor these brave men and women. But happy? Well, in our modern USA, it typically is a day that has lost its meaning, having been replaced by the joy of a Monday off work, the gathering of family and friends for backyard barbecues or the boys drinking beer and playing horseshoes. And who doesn’t like those things? But maybe take a moment, all my fellow US vapers, and think about what this holiday really represents. It could have been your uncle, father, brother, husband or cherished friend to have given their life for you. It almost certainly was someone in your ancestry. So just stop whatever fun it is you’re doing today…just for a moment…and reflect on your freedoms, the legal system we have, the rights we enjoy (I know, but compare to other countries, ok?) and let your heart take in the weight of such great sacrifice. After all, many of today’s service men and women will be part of that great collective celebrated and honored on the last Monday in May. And for them, while they remain, we can be happy for their lives and that they’re still here.

I for one would like to say a thank you to anyone who has supported a fallen soldier - be that a child, spouse, or friend. In our world of political correctness there seems to be a stigma attached to armed service. But the bravery to lay down one’s life should be respected, and for the fallen and those whose lives were affected by that loss, I give praise and appreciation. Rest in peace brothers and sisters.

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Excellent post! I would like to say thanks to all that have served!

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having sons and son in laws that served I can’t say enough about how grateful I am to have them back safe and sound. To anyone who has family, is friends with someone or just knows someone who has fallen over across the ocean protecting our lives and liberty. Be proud, but more important may God Bless and comfort you in your loss. I for one am beyond grateful to you for giving up your most precious family for us.

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I think we need to hit @Skullblade789 with a love bomb, he’s an active navy service person!

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The people who did it willingly and voluntarily enlisted are very brave people.

Pardon me for a minute while I go full drama on people here, but I have to say this.

The men who were drafted… I truly grieve for their souls. Many of them were not more than children when they were taken away from their families.

When I see any soldier near transportation centers, I just want to hug them. I think about their mothers and what I know it has to be doing to them to see their children serving.

My Grandson just went for his first ROTC camp and seeing him in his uniform almost made me cry. I tried to talk him out of it. Most of the wars we get involved in, we didn’t have to be involved in and for those men who were drafted and lost their lives, I simply have no words to express the magnitude of the collective loss.

I took my son to D.C. many years ago to see D.C. and I took him to the Vietnam war memorial. A picture of it doesn’t express what you feel when you see it. It grabs a hold of your soul to be in this place and if you are human you are overwhelmed with a grief that is impossible to describe. You see people taking paper and charcoal and etching the name of their loved one onto the paper. You see tears and you can feel this…it’s almost too much.

After seeing it I don’t care if anyone gets angry with me when I say this:

What I felt was rage. Pure indignation standing in that city. I looked at that White House and those monuments and said to myself “How dare you take our children to kill for you? How dare you? How can you rationalize this loss of life and pain for wealth or treasure?”

Every name on that marble was someones child, brother or friend. Respect and honor are not big enough words to describe it. There is no suitable reckoning. There never will be. Never. Our government needs to stop killing our children for oil and minerals and that almighty U.S. Dollar.

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Thank you for posting this @SthrnMixer

I did a search today for Memorial Day on ELR and found this old thread and felt a need to revive it.

I was thanked for my service by a friend of mine that knows I am a Veteran and to be totally honest with everyone it kind of pissed me off.

Why you may ask… Well today is NOT the day for thanking Veterans that are alive and well. That would be the other 364 days in a year.

Keep in mind Veterans Day is the special day for thanking a living Veteran

Armed Forces Day is the special day to thank a current serving member of our armed forces.

Today is the one day out of the year set aside to honor and show respect for our FALLEN service men/women who paid the ultimate price by laying down there life.

No matter what you believe about why - how - who, put our service members in the position for that to happen, today is the day to show honor and respect for paying the ultimate price in service to our country.

@SthrnMixer I totally agree with you about feeling kind of strange about the phrase of HAPPY Memorial day.

I would urge anyone that has not looked into the differences of these important days to read up on them and educate yourself about the differences.

Memorial Day

Veterans Day

Armed Forces Day

Now I would like to leave you today with a tip of US Flag flying etiquette for Memorial Day. This tip is for people that fly the flag on a vertical standing flag pole only.

At sunrise raise your flag to Full Mast first then immediately lower to half mast.

Fly at Half mast until high noon.

At high noon return your flag briskly to full mast.

For more info on flying the US Flag see.

Title 4 chapter 1 of the United States Code

Everyone please remember to observe a moment of silence / prayer today to honor and pay respect to our fallen brothers and sisters.

Thank you all for putting up with my little rant on this Memorial Day 2019.

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Excellent post luckily I still fall under the Veterans Day catagory

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Brilliant, and important post.

It continually amazes me how the majority of the population (regardless of country it seems) have lost the basic understanding that words have specific meaning.

While many are in fact synonymous, there are (more often than people realize, or truly stop and think about) times when the distinction, and choice of words, is critically relevant.

Thank you for making the time, and posting.

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So many thoughts. So many emotions. Another instance where words fall short and emotions battle. Displays of the best and worst of humanity. I can’t dwell to long on it. I simply have to detach and let it go. My deepest gratitude to those who served. And my deepest sorrow to those who did not return. My deepest destain for those who squander or exploit of their efforts and sacrifices.

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Stolen valor comes to mind. Plenty of that going on. And perhaps a worse offense than those cries of “baby killer.”

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Agreed. “Baby killer” is a distant memory and I simply pity those morons who spoke those words. There are also those who funded both sides, supplied both sides and of course some of the politicians.

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Retired at 20 years of service. Proud to have served and need no recognition. I feel like it was my duty and honor to serve. Recognition needs to go to the fallen men and women in battle, present, past, and future men and women need the praise, not me. I know what I did was right and would not change it for the world. An issue that needs to be focused on now is Veteran Suicide! 22 men and women in the armed forces commits suicide a day. I want that to be 0, but unlikely.

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Death for profit. Evil business to be sure.

My feeling is it gets sorted in the end.

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Not all of war is for oil and money. Honestly. Seeing the countries that truly needed our assistance first hand kind of makes you change your opinion. There are people in need of our assistance. They live a life that is so impoverished it looks like our homeless live a grand life. Not trying to start something, just be aware there is some good that comes out of war. Not a lot but some.

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On another note here: yes the capitalism of the holiday gets to me at times. However, the idea of celebrating and remembering that they died for our freedoms is something I do not take for granted at all. I celebrate their lives and honor the fallen and am blessed to be with family on this day. Do not take the freedoms we have for granted and keep fighting for the freedoms that we have now. Keep the fallen in mind while celebrating their gracious lives to keep our freedoms free. Just be kind to each other on this day and every day!

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And when you vote, don’t vote your damn “feelings” rather vote for freedom, not more government regulation. Vote for strength and not for candy ass social issues.

Blunt and crass post concluded.

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On one point sir you are so wrong. It doesn’t matter in what regard you served if you served you are to be commended and deserve as much reverence, praise and admiration as the unknown solder!! You all were willing to give IT ALL and that’s all that mattered. I so do agree with you about the Veteran Suicide, god rest their souls And damn those that are allowing it instead of reaching out and offering a hand of friendship, love and the support they need and damn well deserve.

MAY GOD BLESS AND GIVE A SPECIAL PLACE IN HEAVEN FOR ALL SERVICE PEOPLE!

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Maybe i shouldn’t be butting into this thread. i’m not American, but English. But then, we do have own Remembrance Day for the fallen, and I should think you know that we certainly have numerous fallen to remember .

I think the British attitude , in general, is a lot like @Maureeenie 's atttitude. Must thank you, Maureenie for that very moving post. We have every respect for, and every sympathy the fallen, but very little respect for the politicians, the generals and gung-ho Patriotism. We don’t buy the idea that all those people “bravely laid down their lives for their country” . Some did. Others were too young, too naive, too blinded by the glamour of War to imagine what they were signing up for. And many, of course, were drafted.

I’ve also heard American vets say that they joined the armed forces just because they couldn’t get a civvie job, and it was better than being out-of-work. I can sympathise with that. Some turn to crime in that situation, some turn to begging, some turn to “scrounging” off the State…if you can choose to be a hero instead, that must be very tempting. Even if - as those people told me, they didn’t really believe in the cause. It was all about survival, really, from the word “Go”

And I’ve heard it said by veterans - on both sides of the Atlantic- that they were not brave at all; the conscientious objectors were the really brave ones. They just didn’t have the courage to take that stance, and face the kind of punishment meted out to the “cowards” (And nobody said that better that the American poet, e.e. cummings in his poem “[i sing of olaf glad and big”](https://poets.org/poem/i-sing-olaf-glad-and-big . Its worth noting, here, by the way, that cummings, himself, served as an ambulance driver)

But in any case, they should certainly all be honoured, and remembered , just as we honour and remember all the victims of great tragedies. And, for my part, I think we honour them more truly, if we stop to recall that these were ordinary people, no different from ourselves, not comic-book heroes. Ordinary humans enduring horrors, and often acting with amazing heroism, but often , all-too-often . coming home broken in body or spririt, or not coming home at all. I also think it very right and fitting that we remember and honour all those who were shot dead for “cowardice” when suffering shellshock (or PTSD as we now call it)

And I know that’s far from being your intention @SthrnMixer , and I( do very much sympathise with many of the sentiments expressed, but I feel that it diminishes that sacrifice if we wave flags and speak of

…as if that’s what war is all about… As if that was what motivated all those people. I feel it’s more respectful to try to see them as they are, every bit as human as ourselves. And to care about them and mourn them nonetheless.

Finally I’d like to quote a poem that probably everybody knows already. it’s our most famous famous war poem (probably) from our most famous war poet, Wilfred Owen, who served in WW1:

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori .

(translation: it is sweet and fitting to die for one’s country.
here’sthe link to the full poem )

I think we Brits got a bit of a head start on the Americans in recognising the horror of war. I don’t think we ever quite recovered from the after-effects of the two Great Wars. and i don;t just mean that, like most of my generation, i grew up playing in the bombed-out shells of old houses, and listening to stories of the uncles who never came back, the hushed rumours of the cousin who did come back (and lived out the rest of his life in a lunatic asylum) and all that. I mean, it’s all had a profound and enduring effect on our nation’s pyche. One affect it’s had is that , whilst we do honour the fallen , wholeheartedly, we’re not near so ready to buy the patriotic hoo-ha and to cheer on soldiers as they march to war. ( That has nothing to do with “political correctness”)

well, thanks for listening. and I sincerely hope i haven’t offended anybody.

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All of you living Veterans deserve a special thanks today as well. If not for you many of our fallen would not have made it home. You have given those families peace and serenity on this day of memories and thanks. Bless you today and every day.

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Freedom to speak ones mind, whether it is popular or un popular is why we fight. Whether you believe that or or not.

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