Memorial Day: Respecting Sacrifices With Quiet

Memorial Day represents a day of respectful and somber reflection on those who died in active service in the US military. Just as a funeral or any remembrance, Memorial Day stands a a day of gravity and pause—just as we would a moment of silence. In fact, the earliest recognition of what is now Memorial Day marked the sobering day with the closure of businesses and community members visiting and marking the graves of those lost in service.

Today, and perhaps I sound bitter, society has distorted and twisted Memorial Day into simply another national holiday—loudly proclaiming the start of summer, business sales, rowdy parties, the ending of the school year, and fun…fun…fun.

Rather than respectful silence, hordes of illegal motorcycles descend on sacred places, waving flags, blasting through communities, and calling it “remembrance”—”Rolling to Remember.”

In this noise-driven zeal, we lose sight of the sacrifices made to make that misplaced zeal possible. We lose simple courtesy for families struggling with remembering—whose father, grandfather, brother, uncle, or neighbor lies below that grave marker.

Perhaps we need a call for a resurgence of restoring quiet respect for Memorial Day. For restoring the purpose for the Day. For pausing and reflecting. For truly respecting the sacrifices made and honoring those lost.