I chose the title for today’s post on purpose. We are so used to seeing “Memorial Day” that we probably don’t stop and think about what the word means. Memorial is based on other words—memory and remember. As a nation, we need to maintain a collective memory. We need to consciously remember what has gone before us. As a historian, I can say with some authority that we are a nation that is losing its memory. Knowledge of American principles and the sacrifices of those who have preceded us is fading. That’s why it’s so important to continue to recognize days like today.
Let’s remind ourselves—in the midst of cookouts, trips to Home Depot, or whatever—that we do owe a lot to those who fought and died, as well as to those who fought and survived. Let’s maintain the memories; let’s collectively remember.