(Originally Submitted May 24, 2009)
The theme of this week’s Avocado Jungle is “transitions”, and what more poignant time than Memorial Day to acknowledge the transition from life to death and death to life as a result of our brave men and women who fell in defense of our nation as well the defense of others.
Many of us celebrate Memorial Day weekend as the inauguration of summer, complete with swimming pools, barbecues, white pants and, of course, a day off from work on Monday. For the record, I am no exception, and have already enjoyed three of the four aforementioned harbingers of the season. However, while celebration with one’s family and friends at this time is beautiful on a microcosmic scale, it should not overshadow commemoration on a macrocosmic scale. In making the ultimate sacrifice, our fallen heroes in the military have made possible these hazy, lazy days we’ve inherited as an entitlement of our liberty, and it is our responsibility to remember and thank them for it.
In so commemorating those buried beneath our flag, it is also right to remember those they left behind, whose transition from life with to life without them are an unavoidable piece of that sacrifice. Equally important, these deaths were not made for the sake of conquest, but for the preservation of free life around the world; a fact uniquely attributable to the United States, from the Revolutionary War onward.
It is in this spirit, irrespective of whether, as an American, one supports all of our wars, we are duty bound to honor the memory of those who died while fighting on our behalf. Therefore, enjoy the three day weekend, and relish this annual rite of the season, be it grilling hamburgers, splashing about in the sun, or the opening of summer’s newest blockbuster movie. However, please take the time to remember those who gave their lives that we may do so, and that this freedom came with a price.
Look Right, Look Left, Look Right again, if All Clear, Quick March!