Today is Memorial Day. At least in the US.
As the very name of the day indicates, it is a day for remembering people. Remembering those that have died. Especially those that have died in the cause of creating our history; our present.
So I have a question. Why do we choose to only remember the soldiers?
Is it only noble and honorable to die if you are part of the military?
Last I checked, soldiers are just people too. Sure they are frequently dedicated people. And sure they often put themselves at risk for others. But being a soldier does not automatically make you better or more notable than any other dedicated person; any other person that takes risks for others.
I again wish to honor the Unsung Heroes that we choose to ignore, since once again it becomes apparent to me that our supposed “peace-loving” nation as a whole values the tools of war above all else.
I don’t know the specific answers to the following questions. All the more reason to ask them maybe.
- How many people died building the railways and highways that made our country possible?
- How many died building bridges and dams?
- How many died in the mines that provided us with the resources for growth?
- How many died building the wondrous cities that help define us?
- How many died helping others survive natural disasters?
These are just a few that come immediately to mind. I am sure the list is so very much longer. Are these people not worth remembering simply because they were not in the military? Is their death somehow less of a sacrifice? Somehow not worthy of notice?
Soldiers often die in less than noble causes, but somehow that does not matter when remembering them. I guess it is because our “great” nation can do no wrong; can never make mistakes. Yet we manage to not only forget how others may have died in creating our nation, but the fact that others died at all.
You’d think that in this day and age of so-called “political correctness” we would do a little better with one of our more celebrated national holidays.
I ask you to raise metaphorical glasses in a toast to honor ALL that have died in service to others; in service to our nation. Soldiers and non-soldiers alike.