Monday, May 31, 2021

Memorial Day: Remember the Young Dead Soldiers

We're a strange bunch. We look forward to Memorial Day as an extra day off from work, a time for picnics and the start of summer. Vice President Kamala Harris tweeted, "Enjoy the long weekend!" Before you bast away at her, she is far from alone. We say "Happy Memorial Day" to each other from the Jersey shore. Few of us take the time to think of, to say nothing of honoring, those who have offered their lives for a freedom we take for granted.

It's always been that way. Even during the Revolutionary War, which started with the Boston Massacre, there was little public regard for those who put themselves in harm's way and lost their lives.

“Good God, are the Americans all asleep and tamely giving up their Liberties?” asked Benedict Arnold, who ultimately sold out himself in bitterness as much as greed.

The very first American to give his life in the cause of liberty was Crispus Attucks. His father was an African-American slave. His mother was a Natick, who were called the "Praying Indians." Little is known about Crispus. But his and the lives of so many who made the ultimate sacrifice are summed up in the immortal words of Archibald MacLeish.

The young dead soldiers do not speak.

Nevertheless, they are heard in the still houses:
who has not heard them?

They have a silence that speaks for them at night
and when the clock counts.

They say: We were young. We have died.
Remember us.

They say: We have done what we could
but until it is finished it is not done.

They say: We have given our lives but until it is finished
no one can know what our lives gave.

They say: Our deaths are not ours: they are yours,
they will mean what you make them.

They say: Whether our lives and our deaths were for
peace and a new hope or for nothing we cannot say,
it is you who must say this.

We leave you our deaths. Give them their meaning.
We were young, they say. We have died; remember us.

First published Memorial Day, 2016


Anonymous said...

Some have said the Crispus story about being the first casualty was more about liberal propaganda than provable history.

Bernie O'Hare said...

On God, do you partisans ever give it a rest?

Dave said...

Some years ago while living in Europe, we visited the Meuse-Argonne American Cemetery. This cemetery was created in the late 1930s as a resting place for many of our World War I combat casualties who died on the Western Front of World War I.

It's a quiet place, next to a small town called Romagne-sous-Montfaucon in eastern France and it holds nearly 15,000 graves of the Doughboys and also the pilots of our Aero Squadrons that flew our aircraft in the first aerial combats during the war. During World War II, when France was under German occupation, the German Army maintained the cemetery out of respect.

There are no less than nine Medal of Honor recipients who are buried there. It was a quiet place even on that Memorial Day, we had the place largely to ourselves. A small piece of the United States, far away from home.

Anonymous said...

Make America great again? Excuse me Mr. Trump but we never were less than the best especially at defending the weak and powerless of the world. Remember those who gave their lives for this GREAT country of ours. We owe them so much.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

7:29 AM pathetic you drag politics into this thread. if some of these men and woman who served during WW2 , Korea , and Vietnam were alive today to see what a mess this country has become , they would cry. Now off to the Memorial Day services.

Anonymous said...

May all the families and friends of lost lives of past wars have the presence of GOD within?! Than there are present day war hero's that are fighting on America's soil today, of which you Bernie are one?! Keep turn out the most investigative reporting in today's news media?!
Re:publican redd

Ovem Lupo Commitere said...

"It doesn't take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle." --H. Norman Schwarzkopf

In humble gratitude for all those throughout history who never came home.

“Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.”--George Washington

Anonymous said...

Thanks Bernie for posting this. Today we indeed mourn not the loss of veterans but the gains we realized because of their willingness to serve. God bless all of the fallen and all who currently wear the uniform that defends our nation.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for honoring our fallen warriors. This week a medical appointment reminder postcard complete with Happy Memorial Day and fireworks arrived in the mail. The United States possibly has three decades of students not taught the significance of Memorial Day.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
May all the families and friends of lost lives of past wars have the presence of GOD within?! Than there are present day war hero's that are fighting on America's soil today, of which you Bernie are one?! Keep turn out the most investigative reporting in today's news media?!
Re:publican redd

9:40 AM


sezary said...

Thank you Bernie.

Agent 99 said...

Thank you for posting this, Bernie. I read your post just after leaving a flag on my dad's grave.

Anonymous said...


Keep all who have served, and those who are serving today in Remembrance this Memorial Day 2016
Especially those who gave the ultimate Sacrifice!.....PJF

Anonymous said...

Liberal school teachers do no teach the significance of today. May God guide us forward.

Anonymous said...

You called it. Someone called me this morning and honest to God said "Happy Memorial Day". I don't believe anyone ever said that to me before. It sounded so weird, I just uncomfortably said "thank you."

Anonymous said...

God Bless the Fallen. Lets all remember this day is about those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their fellow countrymen. To the unknown drunk I argued with yesterday, Memorial day is not for me to celebrate your four years of drinking at a Naval Base in San Diego. We all know that millions of us serve but some serve and pay the ultimate price. This day is for all of them. Not the rest of us.

There, I said my piece. Remember the fallen!

Anonymous said...

Put down the political stuff and go to Arlington. Be humbled and thankful. A volunteer military gives its lives today for all of our freedom. We should agree to appreciate it and put the crap down for a day.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if you are former military, but it sounds like the drunk you were arguing with is. Shame on him if he thinks this day is about him. As a vet, I understand that this is not my day and he is just an ignorant ass if he thought the day was to honor him. While the day may offer a reminder to thank those who may be put in harms way, Memorial Day is to honor those men and women who are forever in uniform.

Anonymous said...

Yes they do and I believe there are many "liberals" among those who gave their lives for our freedom and who serve today.

Anonymous said...

As one of those "liberal" teachers (so labeled) my students pledge every day to a huge flag hung on my wall that was on my father's casket. He served as a seabee in WWII. Even though he died many years after the war,in death, his service was not forgotten. My students are taught respect for those who serve but also to be alert and question why they are asked to serve by our leaders past and present. Responsible citizenship is what I hope they will take away from my classroom.

Anonymous said...

Bernie, I remember your Dad, and his service should not be forgotten.

Anonymous said...

"Nothing is over! Nothing! You just don't turn it off! It wasn't my war! You asked me, I didn't ask you! And I did what I had to do to win! But somebody wouldn't let us win! And I come back to the world and I see all those maggots at the airport, protesting me, spitting. Calling me baby killer and all kinds of vile crap! Who are they to protest me, huh? Who are they? Unless they've been me and been there and know what the hell they're yelling about!"

John Rambo

Anonymous said...

If you came back, take your bows on veterans day. This day is for the fallen. We fight wars in America so everyone, even those we despise, enjoy the freedom to speak their first amendment rights. This slow march towards militarism in order to justify our 10% of 1% of the population voluntary military has been a concern. War is Hell and if you have experienced it, you pray that others do not have to. No need to further divide our people our cast stones. Today is for the fallen who have given their last true measure in defends of freedom. We respect their sacrifice by defending freedom in war and peace.

Little Timmay said...

On this most sacred of holidays the valleys own Gladys Kravits , dour buttinsky Mike "%3" Molovinski has accused longtime contributor Monkey Momma of being an O'Hare sock puppet.

From the comment section of his disgraceful Zionist hate blog,
"sock monkey@2:02, your identity has become pretty clear. you apparently still think that you determine the rules for the blogosphere, this is an odd post for memorial day... as you often write, you post about what you choose on your blog, the same goes here.

I will give you this; when it comes to contributing to hate, you remain the master "

Jeffrey Anthony said...


Three cheers for you Ma'am (or sir, I'm sorry I can't tell from the post).

The fact that is was your father's burial flag makes it all the more poignant and inspiring. Your students are lucky to have such a good example.

Again, good for you. It's wonderful to see someone so proud of their father's service. If only all Americans were as proud of our service men and women as you are.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating that so many people equate patriotism with whether one is a Republican or Democrat. I have found that the size of the flag pin that people love to wear now a days is proportional to the degree of chicken hawkishness they pocess, regardless of social leanings.

Anonymous said...

Sad but true!

Peter J.Cochran said...

'Liberal teacher'' 10;14-- Thank you , I mean it . While and Easton Express Editor is worried about his backyard barbeque -he has evan seemed to miss the point of Memorial Day . It seems it's ME-MORIAL DAY to too many.

gsmith said...

thanks for posting this poem Bernie: Here is one of my favorites, along with Charge of the light Brigade,"Death of the Ball Turret Gunner"

From my mother's sleep I fell into the State,
And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life,
I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose

Randall Jarrell

Anonymous said...

10:14....well said. Thank you for all you do.

Anonymous said...

I'm so grateful to live in this country, and I'm humbled by those who have given their lives for my freedom. May they rest in peace.

Anonymous said...

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
" In Flanders Fields " by John McCrae

Anonymous said...

On this day we honor all those who died in defense of our country, period!!

Anonymous said...

Bernie, God Bless those lost souls in defense of our Nation. I am appalled by the tweet sent out by our President. He has one sentence honoring the dead and then goes on to tell us how great America is under his rule. Shameful and a disgrace for the commander in chief to used this day to praise himself. Shameful!!

Ovem Lupo Commitere said...

Well, as Peter said last year, "it seems to be ME-MORIAL DAY to too many."

Anonymous said...

A guy said to me....

It became Me-mor-ial Day when military psychopaths made all civilians front-line soldiers in the nuclear era.

Like it or not...We all serve now.

Anonymous said...

The only way young people today will realize the true meaning of Memorial Day is to bring back the draft. RIP to those who did not make it home.

Bernie O'Hare said...

That Jarrell poem, Death of the Ball Turret Gunner, blows me away.

Anonymous said...

"They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them."

- Laurence Binyon

Anonymous said...

It is almost Three PM. At that time, I will pause stand at attention, and observe one minute of silent contemplation. Before then, I ask all to join.
I pledge allegiance
To the flag
of The United States of America.
And to the republic, for witch it stands;
One Nation,
Under God. With Liberty; and Justice,
For All.

God Bless America.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, It is a lack o f respect that the senate will not honor brave Americans by investigating the January insurant ion for political reasons.

Anonymous said...

I lower my flag until noon this day. It's the only time I ever lower my flag. We seem to always have flags lowered for what some politician deems we ought. Admit it: you drive by lowered flags and can't think of why they're lowered anymore. I don't do it. It's disgraceful and illustrative of what we've let our political leaders do to us. This day is about a very narrow profile of Americans. For those hours until noon, we should be humbled by the sacrifice of those who died for all of this. I am. Sun rises in six minutes. May those who gave the final measure of their devotion, rest in peace.

Anonymous said...

God Bless those who came before us. They gave their lives to preserve American FREEDOM and LIBERTY. Two important concepts to better life for everyone. Something not nearly enough citizens today understand.
Thanks, Dad. You will not be forgotten by your family.

Anonymous said...

It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain A. Lincoln

The Huntress said...

4:32 exactly. The memory of WWII vets in particular was sullied by Republicans when an attempt by them and their cult followers to subvert the will of a democratic election was made. Today they should hang their heads in shame as we revere those who fought against fascist regimes.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for reminding all of us what this day represents. I think we should also remember those who came home from the wars but were never the same afterwards. In some respects, they sacrificed their lives as well.