Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Memorial Day

For me Memorial Day was pretty much a blur changing 17 time zones and then getting home from Narita. So this post comes a day late. However I would be remiss if I did not pay recognition to the brave souls who went forth from the nation, with full expectation of returning home but did not.

Sadly, the world still chooses to decide its political, economic, and religious conflicts with the continued sacrifice of its youth upon the field of battle. Its a stupid custom, one that in a supposedly civilized world should have been done away with centuries ago. Regrettably, the carnage continues and shows signs of increasing becoming like a leprosy, spreading from Islamic country to Islamic country around the globe.

I am not one of those who believes that it is somehow unpatriotic ask questions about the actions that got the nation invovled in these conflicts and brought men and women as far across the globe as they could be transported, to fight and die for things that are increasingly not linked to the concept of defending one's homeland, but have more to do with what is becoming an all out war to see who vision of the world will prevail. On the one side are the folks who, for all their faults and mistakes, believe in the dignity of the person and the growth and progresss of mankind vs the misguided followers of an apostate religion, deluded by misinterpreations of things that God did not really say.

I shall not live to see this conflict resolved, but I can take time to day to reflect and honor those whose lives were cut short, who did not take the easy way out, and did what their duty asked them to do, despite questions they may have had in their heads and hearts. They went forward and they served. I honor them to my very soul.

Ben Stein has a nice speech that mostly sums up the way I feel today and as is usual for him, says it far better than I could. Read here the whole thing. While I have very mixed feelings about the current events of the day and his comments on the media, I think his central point is quite correct:

Your loved ones' lives had what we all want: meaning. The knowledge you were doing something big for others. That is EVERYTHING.

Wall Street does not have it. Hollywood does not have it. They're just in it for the fame and the money. Your loved ones were in it for unselfishness, for kindness, for love of one's fellow man. There is no higher meaning on this earth.

And most importantly, take time from the holiday and REMEMBER!


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