Honoring their memory
Why do we have this national holiday called Memorial Day, a long weekend marked by food, family and the fear of rising gas prices?
For that matter, why have a national holiday at all? Think about how inefficient that is. Sure, we can say they’re important because we need time to be with family and friends. We could allow time for family and friends by requiring another day of paid time off. And think how much better that would be than a national holiday.
It’s better for people on vacation because not all days off are created equal. Some would prefer a day in summer, while others would prefer a day more of Christmas vacation. With another day of paid time off you have a better chance of taking the holiday when it is valuable to you. And for employers, imagine scheduling time off so you can always keep your doors open and never having to worry about finding someone willing to work a national holiday.
So why do we have a national holiday to take a day off together? Well, in the case of Memorial Day, maybe it’s about doing something together as a nation. On this day, remembering.
You’ve probably heard the saying about military service that “all gave some, some gave all.” Memorial Day provides that national time together to remember the some who gave all.
Without the sacrifice of the some who gave all, we would not have the America we have today. Granted, America is at best imperfect. You may love America. You may hate America. You may have given up on America. The fact remains that whatever chance we have to make whatever we are going to make of this country, we have that chance thanks at least in part to those some who gave all.
Let’s remember them.
First by actually remembering them. Read their stories. Visit their graves. Attend a service in their honor.
Then honor their memory by using and enjoying that freedom they died to preserve, and have a great time with family and friends.
Grateful for sacrifices
I have to admit that I’m not who people think I am.
I was born and raised in California, and moved to New Mexico with my family when I was a teenager. I did not want to come. I was 15 when I had to leave the only home I ever knew, my friends and other family members.
My parents wanted the best for us. It was too hard and too expensive to live in California any longer. With five children to feed, my father returned to his home, a place he knew where he could succeed.
He did, and we all did. All five of his children went to college, are gainfully employed, and have families of their own. My parents did right by us, and we are all appreciative of their sacrifices.
I don’t know if I could have done the same thing. I don’t know if I would have the strength or the courage.
I know I wouldn’t be the man I am today if not for my parents, for what they gave up for us, and for what they gave to us. For that, and much more, I thank you.
The Valencia County News-Bulletin is a locally owned and operated community newspaper, dedicated to serving Valencia County since 1910 through the highest journalistic and professional business standards. The VCNB is published weekly on Thursdays, including holidays both in print and online.