On this Memorial Day, she sees a failure of resolve
Every year on Memorial Day we remember the men and women who were lost to us. We show our everlasting gratitude, our pride for all they have done for us. They risked their lives, in places strange and far away, for all they loved. Many volunteered and many were drafted, but all sacrificed everything to keep us here at home safe and alive.
On this Memorial Day, I was ashamed. Americans are dying, and we are fighting a new and dangerous enemy. We now have been asked again to join together to make some sacrifices to reach the same goals. We are not asked to leave our loved ones and our homes, and to carry weapons of destruction. We have been asked to wear a mask, to keep a safe distance from our neighbors, and to wash our hands. Such simple things to do so that people will not become a horrifying statistic on the evening news.
Many feel that these requests are too much of an infringement on our rights. Gathering in large groups, going to a crowded bar or restaurant — these activities are too much to give up until this pandemic is over. The safety of family and friends is not that valuable. Sitting in our own safe home with our loved ones is too much of a sacrifice.
On this Memorial Day, I felt shame at what we have become. Our values are not the values of the Americans we celebrate on this day. Considering the lives they lost and the lives we are losing now, how can we say that what we are being asked to do is just too much?
A battlefield pledge
Every Memorial Day reminds me of the pledge I served under while being deployed in Vietnam: “Leave no one behind.” Today, this is the same reason I wear a mask.
Debt of gratitude
To everyone wearing a face mask in public: Thank you for protecting me. Your unselfish sacrifice of comfort is greatly appreciated.