True Meaning of Memorial Day

True Meaning of Memorial Day

( – Memorial Day is associated with the beginning of summer cookouts, celebrations, and parties. However, that was not the purpose of the holiday. Rather, it’s a day to remember the people who died for America’s freedoms. The COVID-19 pandemic is sure to put a damper on much of that, and maybe that’s not such a terrible thing.

While America is facing unprecedented restrictions on its movements, those will eventually ease in the country and she will return to being the freest nation in the world. Maybe more will engage in a somber reflection, like upon those rows of white tombstones at Arlington National Cemetery. They’ll understand what they mean and what those men and women died for, even those who fought for the Confederacy.

Shortly after Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered his forces, a rather odd occurrence took place in Charleston, SC. At a camp where hundreds of northern soldiers were buried in a mass grave, having died because of the harsh conditions, over a thousand recently-freed slaves and Union soldiers of the Colored Regiments gathered to pay homage to them. This event is now recognized as one of the first to embody the idea of what the holiday is.

There’s no doubt the country’s deeply divided along Conservative-Liberal lines, but perhaps it’s time for its citizens to look backward in order to move forward. If those people of color who have been so recently held in bondage could come together and acknowledge the sacrifice of so many white men, one would think it’s possible today. The reason the example of the Civil War era is so pertinent is that America is once again facing a War Between the States, but this time without the geographical boundary of the Mason-Dixon line.

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