Saturday, May 29, 2010

Can You Spare a Moment?

The irony of "fighting" for peace never escapes me. I hate war. Those who thirst after power, and in doing so shed innocent blood, repulse me. But make no mistake. I will always stand and honor the men & women willing to sacrifice for others. Lydia Bixby lost 5 sons in the Civil War. When President Lincoln learned of the loss, he wrote her a letter expressing gratitude for the costly sacrifice that had been "laid upon the altar of Freedom". Throughout our nation's history, there have been countless men and women willing to give all. In hopes of securing our right to speak freely (even if that speech was against them),to worship as we choose, or to not worship at all. In hopes of guaranteeing future generations the opportunity of pursuing happiness. These men & women sacrificed their lives, placed everything upon the "altar of Freedom". The very least we can do is give one moment of our time. Remembrances such as these transcend politics.

"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend,
oppose any foe to assure the survival
and the success of liberty." -President John F. Kennedy

"For four long years, much of Europe had been under a terrible shadow. Free nations had fallen, Jews cried out in the camps, millions cried out for liberation. Europe was enslaved, and the world prayed for its rescue. Here in Normandy the rescue began. Here the Allies stood and fought against tyranny in a giant undertaking unparalleled in human history. Today, as 40 years ago, our armies are here for only one purpose — to protect and defend democracy. The only territories we hold are memorials like this one and graveyards where our heroes rest. We in America have learned bitter lessons from two World Wars: It is better to be here ready to protect the peace than to take blind shelter across the sea, rushing to respond only after freedom is lost. We’ve learned that isolationism never was and never will be an acceptable response to tyrannical governments with an expansionist intent. But we try always to be prepared for peace; prepared to deter aggression; prepared to negotiate the reduction of arms; and, yes, prepared to reach out again in the spirit of reconciliation. In truth, there is no reconciliation we would welcome more than a reconciliation with the Soviet Union, so, together, we can lessen the risks of war, now and forever."
- President Ronald Reagan, 1984

"They are not dead who live in lives they leave behind.
In those whom they have blessed, they live a life again." -Eleanor Roosevelt

From (White House Commission on Remembrance):

The National Moment of Remembrance asks Americans wherever they are at 3 p.m., local time, on Memorial Day to pause (for 60 seconds) in an act of national unity.The time 3 p.m. was chosen because it is the time when most Americans are enjoying their freedoms on the national holiday. The Moment does not replace traditional Memorial Day events; rather it is an act of national unity in which all Americans, alone or with family and friends, honor those who died for our freedom. It will help to reclaim Memorial Day as the sacred and noble holiday it was meant to be. In this shared remembrance, we connect as Americans.

The idea for the Moment was born when children touring the Nation’s Capital were asked what Memorial Day means. They responded, “That’s the day the pool opens.” A Gallup Poll revealed that only 28% of Americans know the meaning of this noble holiday.

The Moment provides a time of Remembrance for America’s fallen and to make a commitment to give something back to our country in their memory.To have Americans participate in an act of national unity and demonstrate gratitude and respect for those who died for freedom since the founding of our Nation. To provide a sense of history to our citizens and ensure that younger generations understand the sacrifices made to preserve our liberties.


karen said...

Thank you Natalie! One brief moment at 3pm today - it will actually feel quite sacred and special to know others are doing the same thing. I've set the alarm on my phone. Our country has so many heroes - some larger than life, and some more every day. They are all our national treasures, and embody what makes our country great! Hope you're enjoying some great time with your family this weekend! Love, Karen

KC Mom said...

I think it is a wonderful idea. I love your tribute too.

jen said...

Thanks, Natalie. We're having a BBQ on Monday, and I'm going to remind everyone at 3 to be grateful.
You're halfway through the year, sister! Hang in there!

Sue said...

We will definitely take part in the national moment. I really like that idea.


PS. Hope the second half goes by faster than the first!

Krystyn said...

Thank you for the reminder...and thank you for your family and all of the serving you all have done.

Melanie said...

Your tribute is lovely. Hope you have a great day!

Jess said...

Thanks for the reminder of what Memorial day really is- not a kick off for summer, or just a day off of work. And thank you for your sacrifice- being separated from your husband is rough and I appreciate that he is willing to serve our country. I pray for his safe, and speedy return.

SnarkyMama said...

Tell the Captain how much we love and appreciate him. Tell your children how grateful we all are for people like their dad. Tell yourself you are strong and brave, just like him.

We love you all...