Today is Memorial Day in the United States – the day we honor those who died protecting our country, protecting us.
I think it is more that we honor the way they lived. The fallen multitudes embraced the responsibility to protect our way of life from those who would usurp or destroy it. Knowing full well the dangers, they paid the ultimate price to defend against the bullies of the world. They saw there was a greater good to achieve.
Oh, we can sit here and argue whether this or that war was right or justified. And that’s the whole point.
While we munch on our hot dogs, down some burgers, or sip on sodas, we can say what we want about our political leaders. We can protest government actions we think are wrong. We can do it without fearing some goons will crash into our homes and drag us off to jail or even chop our heads off.
The freedom we enjoy in this country is precious and paid for with the blood of citizens. We all must share in the responsibility of maintaining it. We do that by being informed and active voters, by letting our representatives know what we think about the issues, by paying our taxes, by sitting on a jury, and even by serving in the military.
Is this country perfect? Heck, no! We are flawed, but we must recognize this and continually strive toward the ideals our government is based on. We must have the courage to fulfill our obligations to something greater than ourselves.
By all means, enjoy the day. Just never forget the host of angels who have given you the freedom to do just that.