How to celebrate memorial day

“We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security, is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or the coming generations, that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided Republic. If other eyes grow dull, and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remains to us.”
—General John Logan, General Order No. 11, May 5, 1868

The “Memorial” in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom and liberty. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember those Americans including our ancestors, family members, loved ones neighbors and friends who have paid the price for the blessings of liberty. You can change this by doing the following:

  • By wearing your Memorial Day Button from the first of May until Memorial Day.
  • By visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.
  • By flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon. Memorial Day is a day of “National Mourning.”
  • By attending religious services of your choice.
  • By visiting memorials.
  • By participating in a “National Moment of Remembrance” at 3:00 PM local time, to pause and think upon the meaning of the day and for taps to be played where possible.
  • By renewing a pledge to aid the widows, and orphans of our fallen dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Also, please consider adding your voice in support of the efforts to restore the traditional day of observance of Memorial Day back to May 30th (instead of “the last Monday in May”).Go to www.usmemorialday.org/act.html to add your voice. This would help greatly to return the solemn meaning back to the day, and help return minds and hearts to think upon the ultimate sacrifices made by those in service to our country. Just one special day out of the year to honor our loved ones, our ancestors, our friends who died defending our freedom and liberty

The Memorial Day Foundation Video Player

Memorial Day is an important day for all of us, serving as a reminder to remember those who have fought for and served this incredible country we call home. With the holiday weekend quickly approaching, we’ve put together a few Memorial Day celebration ideas on how you and your family can recognize this special day together.

This Memorial Day, make it all about spending time with loved ones as you remember those who have fought for your freedom, and enjoy a fantastic kick-off to summer.

Attend A Memorial Day Event

Many towns and cities across the US celebrate with parades and events to recognize Memorial Day—often concluding with a moment of silence or memorial service. These are excellent community events and are perfect for the entire family, combining excitement, education, and the outdoors.

Here are just a few of our favorite Memorial Day events happening near InTown Suites properties:

**If you and your family plan on attending any in-person events this Memorial Day weekend, remember to celebrate responsibly by wearing your mask and staying socially distanced.**

Plan A Family BBQ To Celebrate Memorial Day

Traditionally seen as the unofficial kick-off to summer, Memorial Day is an excellent time to get family and friends together to share stories of the past, exchange gratitude and enjoy a delicious meal together.

This Memorial Day weekend is the perfect opportunity to catch up with friends and relatives that you haven’t seen over the last year. You can even find a local park or beach with BBQ facilities and bring the party there for more space.

Looking for simple side dishes to serve with your grilled goodies this Memorial Day? Here are a few no-cook meal ideas that will perfectly complement your main grilled dishes. The best part? You can prepare everything without an oven or hours in the kitchen.

Decorate Your Home For Memorial Day

Memorial Day is an excellent time to wave our red, white, and blue with true pride! Let the kids join in the fun by hanging flags from the house and on the lawn. There’s never been a better time to embrace your patriotism—and your yard will look fabulous in stripes and stars!

If you have a flagpole, consider joining others in the country by lowering the flag half-staff from dawn until noon (local time) as a sign of respect. Don’t forget to briskly raise your flag to the top of the staff at noon and let it fly until sunset in honor of the battle heroes of our great nation.

Volunteer In Your Community

Whether it’s a friend who needs a hand, an elderly neighbor or a community soup kitchen, volunteering is a great way to pay it forward in a positive way that echoes the spirit of Memorial Day. Take it upon yourself to do something selfless, just as the many men and women we celebrate on Memorial Day did.

For inspiration on how you can volunteer or get involved with your local community, check out the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation ’s resources.

Enjoy A Memorial Day Concert

There are plenty of shows and concerts to choose from this Memorial Day weekend, but one of our longstanding favorites is the National Memorial Day Concert . Tune into the live televised event on PBS on May 30th at 8:00 p.m. EST. It’s a truly fantastic event year after year.

Take A Virtual Tour Of The Capital

Washington, D.C. is full of museums and galleries spotlighting the rich history of our nation. Even if you can’t travel to D.C. this Memorial Day weekend, you can now take a virtual tour of many of those museums from the comfort of your home . Your and your family can explore the National Geographic Museum, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and many more with a whole new perspective.

Send A Memorial Day Care Package

Another way to celebrate Memorial Day is caring for those currently serving in our military. Operation Gratitude is a non-profit organization that sends care packages to active military members around the world. Since 2003, they have sent over three million care packages. They also have a virtual volunteer program you and your family can take part in from home.

Set Off On A Memorial Day TRIP

Getaway as a family, and enjoy a change of scenery this Memorial Day weekend. Whether it be out of state or a simple staycation, the long weekend is the perfect time to reconnect, recharge and relax. Take advantage of some (hopefully) fine weather and enjoy a weekend at the cottage, on a hiking trip or a road trip to visit family.

What’s not to love about Memorial Day? It marks the unofficial start of summer, it’s a three-day weekend, and it’s a great excuse to eat lots of hot dogs. Celebrate this American holiday on May 31 st to the fullest by checking out these fun facts, activities and inspiring quotes.

How to celebrate memorial day

Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer.

What exactly ARE we celebrating on Memorial Day?

  • Memorial Day honors those throughout history who have lost their lives while serving in the United States military.
  • It falls on the last Monday of May every year.

How to celebrate memorial day

Thank a soldier or veteran on Memorial Day.

  • Honoring those who’ve died in battle goes back thousands of years to the ancient Greeks and Romans.
  • Memorial Day originated in the years after the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971.
  • Americans celebrate by visiting cemeteries and memorials, participating in parades, and gathering with family and friends.
  • The term “Memorial Day” was first used in the 1880s, but before that the holiday was called Decoration Day for more than a century.
  • More than 20 towns claim to be the holiday’s “birthplace”—but the federal government only recognizes one of them. It’s a tiny town in upstate New York called Waterloo. The town first observed it on May 5, 1866.
  • The idea of wearing a red poppy on Memorial Day began with a World War I poem called “In Flanders Field.”
  • A formal Memorial Day ritual states that the American flag should be hung at half-staff until noon on Memorial Day.
  • The U.S. government created a law in 2000 stating that all Americans are encouraged to pause for a National Moment of Remembrance at 3 p.m. local time.
  • Amtrak (whose trains blast their whistles), Major League Baseball, and NASCAR observe this moment of remembrance, among many other organizations.
  • The holiday used to be celebrated on May 30 th every year. Some veterans lobby for a return to its original date.
  • Some of the largest Memorial Day parades happen in New York, Chicago and Washington D.C.

How to celebrate memorial day

Where did wearing a poppy bloom on Memorial Day come from? A World War I poem.

Quotes Fitting for Memorial Day

“I think of a hero as someone who understands the degree of responsibility that comes with his freedom.”

– Bob Dylan

“Patriotism is not short, frenzied outbursts of emotion, but the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime.”

– Adlai Stevenson II

“Never throughout history has a man who lived a life of ease left a name worth remembering.”

– Theodore Roosevelt

“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God such men lived.”

– George S. Patton

“Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

How to celebrate memorial day

You can visit a cemetery and leave flowers or a flag at a soldier’s headstone on Memorial Day.

“Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it. It flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it.”

– Unknown

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.”

– John F. Kennedy

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.”

– Joseph Campbell

“It doesn’t take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle.”

– Norman Schwarzkopf

“Home of the free, because of the brave.”

– Unknown

How to celebrate memorial day

Memorial Day honors American soldiers who sacrificed their lives.

Put Your Own Mark on Memorial Day!

Besides eating barbecue and enjoying nice weather, make the day special with some of these activities:

  • Visit a cemetery. Make a flower bouquet and lay it on the headstone of a fallen soldier. Or if you’d rather, set a mini flag there.
  • Donate to a veteran’s hospital. Bring cookies or another gift to a local veteran’s hospital to show the patients how much you care.
  • Wear festive clothing. Break out your red, white and blue. Get creative.

How to celebrate memorial day

Create a Memorial Day piece of art on your sidewalk.

  • Make Memorial Day ice cubes. Make patriotic drinks by putting blueberries and cut-up strawberries in ice cube trays. Cover them with water or red or blue juice and freeze the trays overnight. Throw the ice cubes in your lemonade or seltzer the next day while you’re celebrating.
  • Break out the face paint. Paint flags or red, white and blue stars on your face.
  • Take a virtual tour of the White House. Ever wonder what the inside of the White House looks like? Head to Google Arts & Culture for this virtual tour—It’s the next best thing to actually being there.

How to celebrate memorial day

Learn how to make these patriotic ice cubes on OceanSpray.com

  • Get patriotic with sidewalk chalk. Draw a huge flag on your driveway, or even just a thank-you message to our veterans.
  • Watch the Memorial Day concert. Each year, PBS airs this concert the day before Memorial Day. Watch this star-studded event at 8pm eastern time.
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What will you do on Memorial Day? Did you learn anything from this article? Tell Kidzworld!

Memorial Day is today and it is predicted to be one of the biggest holidays celebrated since the beginning of the pandemic. With that, most people don’t know how to celebrate. In high school, we were excited to leave school early or not even have school that day. However, when you grow up you start to question why you got the day off. The reason was because Memorial Day is a holiday that celebrates our brave and fallen soldiers in the military. Here’s a few things to do this Monday to celebrate properly.

Go to a Memorial Day Parade

There are multiple parades happening Memorial Day, but here’s two!

  • The City Wide Memorial Day Parade in Wood Dale, IL.
  • The Memorial Parade in Chicago

For more information regarding the parades or Memorial Day events, please take a look at the Chicago Tribune.

Play a patriotic song or movie

  • Color Me America by Dolly Parton
  • Born In the USA by Bruce Springsteen
  • God Bless America Again by Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty

Learn more about the top 32 Memorial Day songs!

Patriotic movies

  • 2004, National treasure
  • 1989, Glory
  • 1995, The Tuskegee Airmen
  • 1983, The Right Stuff
  • 1994, Forrest Gump

For more movies, click here to see the top 32 memorial day movies:

Make a care package for soldiers

You can add numerous items in the box for a soldier to put a smile on their face.

  • Snacks: Protein bars, granola bars, nuts, trail mix, cheese crackers and gum.
  • Food items: Ramen, instant mac and cheese, tuna, peanut butter, jelly and bread.
  • Drinks: Flavored water, monster energy drink, v8 and Gatorade.
  • Toiletries: Toothbrush, toothpaste, razors, shampoo, mouthwash, wipes, pain relievers, feminine hygiene products, lotion, and sunscreen.
  • Entertainment: Books, magazines, board games, playing cards, and journals

Use troopster.org to assist with sending a care package, or assist with donations.

DIY Red, White, and Blue decor

Pinterest is an all time classic when it comes to doing a project. However, Good Housekeeping has 20 ideas listed to help your creativity.

  • Tie a red, white and blue bow on a chair.
  • Tie a bow on your utensils.
  • Create an American flag wreath.
  • Make a striped vase

Go on a picnic

There are many beautiful places to go with the family to have a picnic in.

Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, located in Lemont, is a beautiful spot to bring the entire family. Taking the path up and down a hill to arrive at the beautiful waterfall. You can put a red, white and blue blanket down. Have a nice meal with the family while watching and listening to the relaxing sounds of the water falling.

Willow Springs Woods, located in Willow Springs, is a highly rated picnic ground. Along with Whalon Lake in Naperville.

Have a BBQ

Have a nice family barbecuing with the family. Have a nice celebration with the DIY decorations you created. The basic Memorial Day dishes consist of cheeseburgers, corn on the cob, potato salad and chicken.

How to celebrate memorial day

Like many things impacted by COVID-19, Memorial Day 2020 will look a bit different than past celebrations. There will not be parades, there will not be outdoor barbecues, and there will not be get-togethers with loved ones celebrating the unofficial start of summer.

What there will be, however, is the reason we celebrate Memorial Day in the first place: to honor and mourn the military personnel who have lost their lives during service in the United States Armed Forces.

Sadly, as with other federal holidays, this meaning is often lost in favor of the excitement many experiences at the thought of a three-day weekend. As was consistently argued by former Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) during his tenure, “in our effort to accommodate many Americans by making the last Monday in May Memorial Day, we have lost sight of the significance of this day to our nation.”

Several prominent veterans service organizations agreed with Inouye that “changing the date merely to create three-day weekends has undermined the very meaning of the day. No doubt, this has contributed a lot to the general public’s nonchalant observance of Memorial Day.”

(Memorial Day was initially celebrated on May 30th, but was moved to the last Monday in May as part of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968. Shortly after that, in 1971, Veterans Day was returned to Nov. 11th, rather than a designated Monday in November because, as noted by the Senate Judiciary Committee, on balance, “the desires of veterans and many other Americans for a special date of commemoration is more important than . . . commercial interests.”)

In light of the COVID19 pandemic, and its associated limitations on travel and social gatherings, as well as the increase in the number of people working from home, the three-day weekend has largely lost its meaning.

However, just because the three-day weekend has lost its meaning, it doesn’t mean that Memorial Day has to lose its meaning.

On the contrary, the absence of the usual social gatherings and travel excursions associated with the three-day weekend provides more time to pause and reflect on Memorial Day’s true purpose.

Here are a few ways to honor the fallen at home this Memorial Day:

Patriotic Chalk Art: “chalk the walk” is a movement that has flooded social media to spread positivity and inspiring messages during the pandemic. Neighborhoods across the country have encouraged their residents to chalk their sidewalks and driveways to make the day a little brighter for passersby. For Memorial Day, chalk your walk with a patriotic mural or a thank you note acknowledging those who have given their lives serving our country.

Tune in to the National Memorial Day Concert. Although this year’s concert won’t have the live audience we typically see on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol this year, the event will still air at 8 p.m. on Sunday, May 24th, on PBS. It will feature actors Gary Sinise and Joe Mantegna giving a special tribute to the fallen by showing footage of new performances and highlights from past concerts.

Fly the American Flag: one of the best ways to show your appreciation for those who’ve lost their lives serving our country is to fly the flag, or, if you cannot hang a flag, to wear red, white and blue. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs: “On Memorial Day, the flag should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until noon only, then raised briskly to the top of the staff until sunset, in honor of the nation’s battle heroes.”

Donate to an organization that assists survivors: although we specifically honor the fallen on Memorial Day, the fallen often leave behind loved ones who continue to grieve year-round, not just on Memorial Day. For example, this year, the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) will host a Virtual National Military Survivor Seminar and Family Program as an online event at no cost to any interested attendee. You can also review the organization’s Grateful Nation Memorial Here Wall here.

Ancestry’s Memorial Day Parade of Heroes: Ancestry, an organization dedicated to family history, will host a “Parade of Heroes” on its Facebook page Monday, May 25th, at 11 a.m. The event will be hosted by Kathie Lee Gifford and will also commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. According to Dr. Kimberly Gilmore, Lead Historian and Senior VP of Research at A+E Networks: “During [these] challenging times, we can all be inspired by remembering that every person who has served our nation has a powerful story that can shed light on the history we share and the future we will build together.”

Although Memorial Day will certainly look a bit different this year due to the current COVID-19 pandemic and the associated stay at home orders still in effect in many places across the nation, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Rather, the cancellation of social gatherings provides us with a greater opportunity to remember why we celebrate Memorial Day in the first place — to honor and respect that military personnel who have lost their lives serving our country.

Despite the current challenges we face due to COVID-19, we should remain grateful for their service and their sacrifice.

How to celebrate memorial dayMemorial Day is a time to honor those who lost their lives while serving in the military.

One glance at the holiday Facebook feed is all it takes to see that many people aren’t quite sure what Memorial Day is all about. Pictures of loved ones who are currently serving are posted alongside stories of grandparents who died in the line of duty. People are barbecuing and having pool parties. Sometimes elements of Veteran’s Day get thrown into the mix.

So what is Memorial Day? And how should people celebrate? So often the “Memorial” in Memorial Day seems to fall by the wayside.

The History of Memorial Day

Memorial Day has a history rooted in Decoration Day- a time that was designated for the nation to decorate the graves of those who had died in the Civil War. This observance started in 1868, three years after the war was over.

General John Logan stated, “We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security, is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or the coming generations, that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided Republic…”

Decoration Day was celebrated on different dates all over the country, usually in April. After World War I, the holiday expanded to honor those who died in all American wars, and the date moved to May 30th. Finally, in 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day as a national holiday, establishing the last Monday in May as the official time of remembrance.

How to Celebrate Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a time to honor those who lost their lives while serving in the military. For widows and orphans, it can be painful to see people treating the holiday as just another time to party. Memorial day was intended to be a solemn remembrance.

Some observance suggestions from The Memorial Day Foundation include:

  • Visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.
  • Flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon. Memorial Day is a day of “National Mourning.”
  • Attending religious services of your choice.
  • Visiting memorials.
  • Participating in a “National Moment of Remembrance” at 3:00 PM local time, to pause and think upon the meaning of the day and for taps to be played where possible.
  • Renewing a pledge to aid the widows, and orphans of our fallen dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Young children can participate in Memorial Day by reading age-appropriate books on the subject, learning how to fly and fold the flag, making a wreath to leave on a memorial or grave, or attending a local parade or community event.

How to celebrate memorial dayFamilies can observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.

What About Veteran’s Day?

Veteran’s Day is in November. It is a day to honor all who have served in the American military. On Veteran’s Day, it is more appropriate to bring out the party foods and the feasting- if you’re doing it to honor a veteran.

On Veteran’s Day, it’s more appropriate to share the stories and photos of those currently serving (with their permission) as well as the stories of relatives who have passed on, but who did not die in the line of duty.

Veteran’s Day provides an opportunity to perform acts of service for the families of military members who are deployed. Or to volunteer with or donate to organizations that help soldiers with the physical and mental health issues they may face after returning home.

Either way, both holidays should be observed with sensitivity and respect. So before Facebook blows up with pool pictures of people’s “Memorial Day Vacation,” think about the reason these holidays exist, and what they represent. Then choose to honor the intended meaning of the day.

Lands’ End loves finding ways to give back. For us, Memorial Day is another opportunity to show our support by taking the time to get involved. From community events to veterans’ organizations, homeless shelters to animal shelters, we’re all in. We’ve built homes, donated equipment, provided material for quilts and raised countless dollars in hopes of finding cures for diseases that affect our friends and families. When our employees volunteer, Lands’ End honors the time they give by matching their fundraising efforts with our contributions program. We know you love giving back, too. So, in honor of Memorial Day, we thought: Why not share our ideas with you? Here’s how we’re lending a hand.

When it comes to giving back, what is Lands’ End’s mission?

Our mission is to help create “a more comfortable world.” We care about our employees, our community, and our planet. That’s why Lands’ End is committed to a diverse and inclusive culture for our employees and customers. We’re also helping to create a more sustainable future by minimizing our impact on the earth, one step at a time. We’ve created The Comfort Fund to focus our corporate giving. We are supporting charities and organizations that focus on one of the three basic needs for human comfort: food, shelter and safety.

What is The Comfort Fund?

Here at Lands’ End, we believe there are three basic needs, each of which are required to create human comfort. Those basic needs are food, shelter and safety. The Lands’ End Comfort Fund supports organizations who help fulfill at least one of these elements. We’ve partnered with the Skin Cancer Foundation to empower people to take a more proactive approach to daily sun protection. Our work with the Breast Cancer Research Foundation helps to fund over 275 researchers in 14 different countries around the globe. Plus, we’ve partnered with One Warm Coat to provide outerwear to those in need free of charge. This Memorial Day, you could challenge yourself to form a new charitable partnership of your own. With the holiday marked as a yearly reminder to pitch in, just think of all you’d have to be proud of five or ten years from now.

Does Lands’ End recycle?

As part of our ongoing efforts to become a zero landfill company, Lands’ End launched an innovative recycling program. Current recycling and waste management activities within the company include a comprehensive program addressing paper products, maintenance operations, electronics, disposal of non-recyclables, water management, plus corrugated cardboard, aluminum cans, glass and plastics. It allows us to avoid adding to the ever-growing problem of overflowing landfills. This effort has many layers and is happening at all levels of our company. A great example of this can be seen in our scraps. We’ve proudly turned over 262 tons (and counting) of unused materials and apparel into usable goods like insulation, bedding, acoustics, and home furnishings. Purchasing paper products made from recycled materials is another significant component of the larger picture of Lands’ End’s recycling initiative. We’ve learned even small changes can make a huge difference. For example, our main campus in Dodgeville, Wisconsin, began composting. Today we compost roughly four tons of kitchen waste and coffee grounds per year. On Memorial Day, ask yourself how you can reduce, reuse or recycle things you’d usually throw in the trash can. Together, we’ll be working toward a more sustainable future for us all.

Does Lands’ End still help maintain lakes in Madison, Wisconsin?

Our strong nautical and sustainability heritage makes our partnership with the Clean Lakes Alliance (CLA) in Dane County, and the City of Madison Parks a natural fit. We work to make a difference in maintaining the water quality of area lakes‚ streams and wetlands in the Yahara River Watershed. Lands’ End team members regularly participate in CLA-sponsored events‚ including annual trash cleanup days and projects to remove invasive species. In doing so, we help protect the shoreline and water quality of Lake Waubesa. Lands’ End also supports the CLA-sponsored winter festival, Frozen Assets, in February near Lake Mendota. The three-day event allows residents and visitors to enjoy the weather by participating in winter sports or family activities.

Can you help Lands’ End give back?

We’d love it if you’d share your Memorial Day pics and short stories with us. Show us what you’re doing to give back by tagging @landsend on Facebook and Instagram. Your goodness will surely inspire others.

On this Memorial Day, it felt right to take a hike up East Rock and view the Soldiers and Sailors Monument. It’s important to remember that Memorial Day is about something far more important than sneaking in the first summer BBQ of the season; its about paying homage and remembering those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, defending America and everything it is and everything it stands for.

But this particular date, May 31, is the centennial for something else…something that is a dark malevolent stain upon an America that is still continuing to form a more perfect union. A century ago, a section of Tulsa, OK that had been dubbed “Black Wall St.” was set ablaze in one of the most violent acts of racist-inspired terrorism in American history. And probably most insidious of all is that this event was kept quiet and hidden, such that a vasty majority of people were unaware that it had even happened until 5-10 years ago. It was one of the most violent in a long line of racist, hatred-filled, acts by one group of one skin color against another, believing some ridiculous notion that skin color determines a hierarchy amongst human beings. And while it might be easy to think that that type of inhumane, and anti-human acts ended at the least with the Emancipation Proclamation, and at the best with the Civil Rights legislation of the 1950s and 1960s, as well as all the things that have come since, we still suffer from deeply rooted racism, sexism, and other forms of divisive discrimination that are held deep within our society, and our societal infrastructural norms.

As I stared at the monument today, I asked myself the question: Is America in 2021 an America that is worthy of the sacrifice of those we remember on Memorial Day? The answer is complicated. America has made impressive strides to live up to its founding promises; and furthering those promises beyond the limits of what was prescribed in 1776…equality for all people as an example. It was no mistake that the Declaration of Independence states very clearly “all men are created equal” and that America has gone further, working towards equality for all people with no exceptions or exclusions. There is a great deal of what America has become that is worth the sacrifice of those whom we remember this Memorial Day.

But in the preamble to the Constitution, the most important document of our governance, and arguably the most important document to our Americanism, there exists the following line: “to create a more perfect union.” That statement in itself implies that the process is exponential, with no clear definition of the end goal, but more of an homage to the journey with which we will take to achieve that goal. Perfection in itself is not something that is really achieved; its more something that is sought after for a long period of time. America is an on-going experiment and we have not accomplished true equality for all……yet. There is still much work to be done. But the on-going, imperfect experiment is also worth defending. Because America is defined by that very on-going experiment.

So the answer to the question is yes, but there is a caveat. The thing that would be equal parts indefensible and a slap in the face of those we honor today, would be to sit back and think that the America we have is good enough and we can stop trying to be better. We must continue to build an America that is an America for everyone. And as long as it’s not good enough for everyone, there is still work to be done.