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Memorial Day 2007

As I sit here in my quiet house on a rainy Memorial Day morning the thunder rumbles in the distance. Later today the family will gather for some good food and company, but now I am wandering the web reading Memorial Day posts. Eventually I’ll get around to my email, but for now it’s the thoughtful posts of memory that are holding my interest.

Leon Hale, in his newspaper column today talks of remembering the 14 friends he lost in WWII. There was one line in his column today that summed up Memorial Day in a whole new way for me…

I don’t need Memorial Day to remind me of these friends. I think about them all the time. Fourteen lives that didn’t get lived.

“Lives that didn’t get lived”. That’s what Memorial Day is, a honoring of the sacrifice of a life, a life not lived to completion. The families not formed or left unfinished, the friends left behind and the friends unmade, the wives and children, both left behind and never created…The lives unlived.

Spend some time today and think on the lives that didn’t get lived…There have been a lot of those unlived lives in this nation’s history. It’s our responsibility to all of those unlived lives to be sure that their sacrifice was justified, that the many lives that will never be because of those cut short are worth the sacrifice we demand of our warriors.

On this Memorial Day as more lives are being put on the line in battles around this world, we must always remember it isn’t the life that ended we are memorializing…It’s the life that wasn’t lived.

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Sunday Morning.

On this Sunday, the Memorial Day Eve so to speak, Patry Francis is back with one of her personal short stories that are so powerful the reach into your soul…Do yourself a favor and go read the whole thing.

THE LAST LETTER: A Short True Story

Signs of Human 4, originally uploaded by zachstern.

When I entered high school, there was a war going on. Every night the local paper printed the addresses of soldiers who wanted to get mail. I wrote to every name on the list, and used my babysitting money to send them small gifts.

Source: SIMPLY WAIT: THE LAST LETTER: A Short True Story

Fred First has posted the first part of a piece on patriotism. I find myself in agreement with most of what he has posited in this piece. The only addition I would make to his comments is in adding a “higher ideals” component to the definition. To me, one of the biggest things this country has had going for it over the years is the notion that we can do better…We expected to be better than we actually were. We held ourselves to a higher standard than we held others. Somewhere in the past few years we quit holding ourselves to those “higher” standards and that’s where we are beginning to lose our way. Fred points a way to refind those ideals by rediscovering that tie to place, that tie to home, that tie to country. We will only return to those “higher” ideals when we hold ourselves and those who “lead” us and the companies we allow to sell to us are held to the same “higher” standards.

“We the people” were the words used to found this country. “We the people” have given our lives and our living to making this country strong. “We the people” developed the “ideals” that have led this country through two hundred plus years of wars, disasters and lives. “We the people” will continue to move this country forward, not always well, sometimes with stumbles, sometimes with great arguments, but, always forward if we hold ourselves to the same high ideals our parents and grandparents held themselves.

Go, spend some time with family. Think on those who have sacrificed so much for this great country. Think on those that still sacrifice daily. Give thanks for all of them. Raise your own sights to the higher ideals…Have a great patriotic weekend.

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Jim Hightower | MOLLY IVINS

Jim Hightower offers up another tribute to Molly Ivins…

We progressives, we Americans – and anyone, anywhere who loves liberty and justice – have lost a true, trusted friend. Molly Ivins died recently.

Yet, Molly was more than a person. She is a spirit – a big, boisterous, joyful, irreverent, hell-raising, fun-loving, muckracking, uninhibited, maverick spirit.

As such, she lives.

I first encountered her in 1970, when she exploded from the pages of the Observer like a supernova. She was full of wit, smarts, and sass, grabbing readers by their hearts, minds, gonads, and funnybones. Damn, I thought, no human can write like that! She could knock you over and lift you up in the same sentence. It was her spirit coming at you.

Source: Jim Hightower | MOLLY IVINS

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