Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

SUNLIGHT STRIKING a snowy ridge in springtime is a passing glory that ultimately results in barren rock. It is not unlike the sad reality that soldiers who die in battle soon melt from the memory of those who benefit from their sacrifice. That is the irony of war and its tragedy. It is therefore pointless to lament the fact that, for most of us, Memorial Day has little to do with commemorating those who have perished in our wars, some 1.3 million souls since 1775. For in the end, American soldiers have died down the centuries so that we, the current generation, can have the luxury of grilling backyard steaks or seeking mattress sales while being blissfully unconscious of the reasons why we can. It is a privilege purchased in blood. Sadly, two of its latest buyers -- Marine Cpl. Keaton Coffey, 22, of Boring, Ore. and Army Spc. Vilmar Hernandez, 21, of Salinas, Calif. -- were both killed in Afghanistan only days ago. They are worthy of honoring this day. When, at long last, will we as a people become worthy again of deserving of the sacrifice being made on our behalf?

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