Lacey Smith

Memorial Day: A look back

In Current Events on May 31, 2011 at 12:00 pm

I didn’t want Memorial Day to come and go without a discussion on my blog, but I wanted to do it looking back. Today is a sort of review.

Memorial Day is possibly one of America’s most sacred holidays. It’s the day that we honor and remember those who’ve come before, especially those who died in war.

Except it’s not anymore.

Do a Google News search on Memorial Day and you get headlines like this:

  • Hollywood enjoys a record Memorial Day weekend at the box office
  • Maria Spends Memorial Day with Kids while Arnold Rides Around Town
  • Memorial Day Niblicks: No.1 Luke Donald & ageless Tom Watson

‎It’s not until you get down the screen a ways that there are stories about our soldiers and veterans.

It was the same when I pulled up my local news web sites: a few stories about the “reason for the season” mixed in with hard news and a number of stories about Hollywood, spending and travel in correlation with Memorial Day.

It got me wondering if there is anything sacred to us anymore.

I spent a lot of time yesterday thinking about my dad, grandfathers and friends who have served in the military and also my family that left me an incredible legacy.

Fortunately I’ve never lost anyone because of a war.

Maybe many Americans quietly carried the holiday in their hearts like I did. The media sure doesn’t give that impression, but I’m not in the habit of trusting that. I think this country is better than the media portrays.

On the other hand, I think we treat our holidays lightly. If you look up the etymology of “holiday,” it’s a conjunction of the words “holy day.” Not every holiday is a holy day, but some are.

Now, this close after one of these sacred holidays, is a good time to look back and review whether or not we are observing them with the respect they deserve or if every holiday is just a time to get in extra housework, go shopping and have a day off work.

I know I could do better at not getting caught up in the unimportant elements of a holiday. I think a lot of us could.

Do we still hold some things sacred? Today is a good day to reflect, to evaluate how we observed Memorial Day and find out.


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