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Memorial Day, A Look Back

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Banjer 27 May 02 - 09:30 PM
Mary in Kentucky 27 May 02 - 10:00 PM
katlaughing 27 May 02 - 10:40 PM
Banjer 28 May 02 - 05:40 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 08:39 AM
Mary in Kentucky 28 May 02 - 09:03 AM
Mary in Kentucky 28 May 02 - 09:08 AM
Big Mick 28 May 02 - 09:10 AM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 09:17 AM
MMario 28 May 02 - 09:18 AM
Big Mick 28 May 02 - 09:20 AM
Steve in Idaho 28 May 02 - 09:58 AM
PeteBoom 28 May 02 - 10:04 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 10:19 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 10:32 AM
Big Mick 28 May 02 - 10:39 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 10:43 AM
Big Mick 28 May 02 - 10:50 AM
Steve in Idaho 28 May 02 - 10:52 AM
Jeri 28 May 02 - 11:00 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 11:25 AM
katlaughing 28 May 02 - 11:31 AM
Steve in Idaho 28 May 02 - 11:33 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 11:35 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 11:41 AM
Steve in Idaho 28 May 02 - 11:47 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 11:50 AM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 11:57 AM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 12:04 PM
Lonesome EJ 28 May 02 - 12:11 PM
MMario 28 May 02 - 12:22 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 01:13 PM
katlaughing 28 May 02 - 01:14 PM
katlaughing 28 May 02 - 01:24 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 01:48 PM
catspaw49 28 May 02 - 01:49 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 01:59 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 02:10 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 02:12 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 02:24 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 02:39 PM
catspaw49 28 May 02 - 02:54 PM
catspaw49 28 May 02 - 02:59 PM
Steve in Idaho 28 May 02 - 03:08 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 03:10 PM
katlaughing 28 May 02 - 03:26 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 03:39 PM
Lonesome EJ 28 May 02 - 03:58 PM
catspaw49 28 May 02 - 04:22 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 04:58 PM
katlaughing 28 May 02 - 05:07 PM
GUEST,Peace Matriot 28 May 02 - 06:36 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 08:16 PM
Banjer 28 May 02 - 08:28 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 09:32 PM
Amergin 28 May 02 - 10:30 PM
catspaw49 28 May 02 - 10:46 PM
GUEST,mg 28 May 02 - 11:13 PM
GUEST 28 May 02 - 11:20 PM
Big Mick 28 May 02 - 11:51 PM
Ebbie 29 May 02 - 01:34 AM
Banjer 29 May 02 - 06:14 AM
GUEST 29 May 02 - 07:50 AM
Paul from Hull 29 May 02 - 11:12 AM
GUEST,mg 29 May 02 - 11:23 AM
53 29 May 02 - 01:57 PM
Banjer 29 May 02 - 03:48 PM
Lonesome EJ 29 May 02 - 03:54 PM
Steve in Idaho 29 May 02 - 05:00 PM
artbrooks 29 May 02 - 05:02 PM
catspaw49 29 May 02 - 05:12 PM
katlaughing 29 May 02 - 06:26 PM
Steve in Idaho 29 May 02 - 07:05 PM
SharonA 30 May 02 - 04:51 PM
Murph10566 30 May 02 - 05:15 PM
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Subject: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Banjer
Date: 27 May 02 - 09:30 PM

Now that the day is behind us how did YOU spend the first Memorial Day since 9/11/01? Did you do anything different from previous ones? Did the day seem to take on a new meaning for anybody? Did anyone notice, as I did, many more youg people at the ceremonies around town? What are your thoughts on how your town celebrated the day?


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 27 May 02 - 10:00 PM

I saw more flags (mine has been displayed on my house all weekend), I heard the 21 gun salute at the NG Armory near my house, I put a flag on my father's grave (the American Legion hadn't gotten there yet), I was driving past a small cemetary and saw the bugler ready to play taps, I watched the TV shows last night (a little disappointed at the music), and I had many conversations with family and friends...all aware of our relatives and loved ones in the services. I was planning to drive an elderly friend to visit her mother's grave in another county Sat. night, but a brief hailstorm kept us near home. The weather today was gorgeous, many people seemed to be working in their yards, planting flowers, etc.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 May 02 - 10:40 PM

We stayed home, today. I understand there was a lot of bagpipe playing at ceremonies in cemeteries, but we didn't hear any.

We travelled up the Colorado River, yesterday, to the town my mom and dad grew up in. Went to the cemetery where all of my grandparents and some great-grandparents are buried, along with my mom and various aunts and uncles. Met all of my cousins most of whom I'd not seen since the late 60's. The cemetery is one of my favourite places. I saw a lot of flowers, but not any more flags than usual, though there may have been more put up, today. Out of all of my relatives, I cannot think of a one who died in service. Some died from service related injuries or PTSD, many years later, but none in the line of duty, which seems extraordinary considering many of them went through the two world wars, and subsequent ones.

It was a peacfeful and delightful visit which turned my mind to old times, old folks, and the old stories.

Thanks, Banj,

kat


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Banjer
Date: 28 May 02 - 05:40 AM

Seems only fair that I share my Memorial Day experience since I asked the questions!

Instead of being involved with a ceremony as a Civil War Reenactor this year i went to the local Veterans Administration. The ceremony was held at the large cemetery there. It was a nice ceremony. The Clearwater High School JROTC Color Guard presented the colors followed with the usual speechmaking by various officials. The band was excellent!! Playing many patriotic songs and representing all the braches of the service in a musical salute. The one thing that stands out was the close of one of the representatives of Congressmans Young's office. He said that 'This is the land of the free because it is also the home of the brave'

I was happy to see the large number of youngsters there. If all those kids carry the tradition forward and pass it on to their kids the spirit of the day will live forever!

The remainder of the day was split between bike riding for a total of thirteen and a half miles and spending some quiet time at home.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 08:39 AM

I did what I always do on Memorial Day, which is ignore the war mongerers to the best of my ability, and enjoy an extra day off.

As to the "first Memorial Day since 9/11" thing, I think it is over reach, and an obvious attempt to keep 9/11 at the top of the news cycles. Cheap and sleezy militarist sentimentalizing and sensationalizing. Memorial Day is all about propagandizing for the military. Victims of 9/11 weren't soldiers, but civilians. We aren't at war, we were victims of a terrorist attack. I make those distinctions, despite the ruling elite's attempts to blur them, and make "linkages" where they don't exist.

I'm sure my opinion won't be welcomed in this thread, seeing the posts which have come before it. But there you have it.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:03 AM

...lest we forget . This has been in my thoughts often the last month.

I attended a special ceremony honoring a long time friend who is active in the war on terrorism, one of the finest human beings I've ever known. I've recently visited with two elderly relatives who've talked about their lives in the 40's. I discussed old times with them and how our lives have changed, especiall since 9/11. The traveling Vietnam Wall was in our town last week and a former student did a beautiful photo journalism essay on visitors to the wall, of special significance to this town. So many people to remember...


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:08 AM

...oops! Gotta go vote! Today is primary election day!


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Big Mick
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:10 AM

Peace Matriot, why can't you distinguish between the warriors and the war mongers? I ask this with no ill will and I am not chastising you. Young men and women who go to fight are often torn between their patriotic feelings and their natural inclination to question. Can you not find it within you to at least use the day to mourn the loss of these young ones, and honor their sacrifice? Your post, if read by parents that have lost their sons/daughters, would seem so heartless and I don't get that sense from it. I get the sense of anger at all war. Fair enough, but can you not see the disrespect you shower on the fallen? I think I would like your devotion, and find a great deal of common ground with you. But I would have a very difficult time with the idea of "going shopping" just to show 'em.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:17 AM

Matriot, Without their sacrifice, you would not have the right to do as you please. Nothing glorifies war, Memorial Day only remembers the cost. Without living memory, we are forced to repeat history.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: MMario
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:18 AM

To mourn and remember the dead is not necessarily to condone how or why they died.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Big Mick
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:20 AM

Thanks, GUEST and Mario, for putting to words better than I what I was trying to say.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:58 AM

I took a friend's children for rides on my Harley, played music for the third day in a row, and we all said a dinner prayer for those who are in harm's way. It was a lovely weekend with lots of friends, tons of music, and much remembering. Best I've had in nearly 40 years.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: PeteBoom
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:04 AM

I did what I've done for several years. Put on my kilt, joined the rest of the folks from the pipe band and play our way through the small town where we are officially from, and where we practice. The Legion guys lead the way, we pipe them to the cemetary followed by a couple of fire trucks, then the boy scouts and the middle and high school bands. After the high school band goes past, the folks watching the parade join in and follow us to the cemetary.

The Legion post commander placed a wreath at the memorial to the town's war dead (a surprising number considering the size of the town), the fire fighters, 6 of the 7 were combat vets, placed a wreath between fire fighter boots and helmet, a State Senator talked for about 5 minutes, local pastor gave a short prayer, we played Amazing Grace, the honor guard fired a sulte, a trumpeter played taps and that ended it. The fire fighters were the only variance from the last several years.

We do this not because we owe it to the "elite" - but because of the debt we owe to our friends, brothers, fathers and grandfathers (for the younger ones) who were drafted ("called" is the usual word at ceremonies like this) from "regular" life, high school in the case of WWII, and went off to fight a war they did not start. We do this because they were willing to act at a time when cynicism was not quite so rampant. We remember those who went and did not come back - just as we remember the boys (literally) who left and came back as shades of their former self. My father was drafted into WWII two weeks after his 18th birthday - the guy living next to us when I was a kid was drafted 2 weeks after graduating from high school. He went to Viet Nam and came back a changed person. The officer types aren't why we're there. We go there for the ones who were sent whether they wanted to go or not.

Pete


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:19 AM

I don't disrespect the dead or the living, nor do I drag their memories through the mud. Don't preach to me, I've lost family members in wars too Big Mick. My family could honor their war dead going all the way back to WWI, but we don't. We never have, and never will. So get off your high and mighty war horse, and accept the fact that we don't all see the "rememberance" celebrations the same way.

Conscription sucks. War sucks. The idea of ennobling the fighting of rich men's wars sickens me, just as it did my father, who fought (by conscription) in WWII, and lost a brother in that war as well.

Inflicting pain, suffering, terror and disease on huge numbers of human beings in the name of "just war" doesn't fly with me, regardless of which side we are on. There is no "good" side in a war, period. And a whole lot of people DO NOT choose to remember their war dead in that way, or any sort of patriotic way at all.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:32 AM

Guest said, "Without living memory, we are forced to repeat history."

You are confusing sentimentalizing with rationality. If honoring war dead actually resulted in an end to war, I'd be all for it. As it is, these government sponsored "official" miliatry holidays do nothing more than sentimentalize and nobilize the use of boys as cannon fodder.

I take back what I said about the 9/11 thing--there has been a definite increase in the number of teenage and twenty something boys who have been dazzled by the glamorization of "sacrificing for your country" propaganda in the wake of 9/11. It shows in the increased numbers enlisting in the military, so it follows that we'd see more teens and twenties at the Memorial Day celebrations.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Big Mick
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:39 AM

I wasn't preaching and I thought I made that clear. I was asking questions. You clearly have a chip on your shoulder, probably because your views are somewhat controversial. I apologize if you thought I was preaching. But do yourself a favor. Next time you accuse someone of being on a high horse, read your own post. People like you are the ones that spit on me when I came home a confused man/kid. It seems as though you harbor a lot of resentment. Have a nice life.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:43 AM

I have no chip on my shoulder, I just get fed up with holier than thou militarists getting in my face with THEIR opinions of how I should react to war.

You are also dead wrong about me being one of "the ones that spit on you"--talk about chips on shoulders.

I have a cousin who was killed in Vietnam, and a brother who came home permanently disabled from the war (lost his leg to up above the knee).

So fuck you Big Mick.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Big Mick
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:50 AM

No chip, eh? You think yours is the only family affected. This is a tactic I have seen often....."no one has suffered like me". I am sorry for your families sacrifices. I lost friends, relatives and damn near my soul. I hope you deal with it and learn to separate your loathing for war and its cost, from your loathing of those of us who don't celebrate miliarism but try and honor the fallen. You are wrong about painting me as a militarist. If you would research my stands on this here in the Forum, you would find that I hate the glorification of war. You would find that clearly that you and I agree on more than we disagree. But that would require effort and you are too busy being lost in your hate. Too bad. I hope all goes well. I won't tell you to fuck off as you did me. Instead I will just pity that you can't see clearly. And wish you peace.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:52 AM

There is no way to answer the GUEST,Peace Matriot without invoking ire. And ire is what leads to war. I don't see anyone on a "High Horse" here except yourself. You sound like a "Born again" person with only one view - so when you post your little diatribe after this post remember that "It don't mean nothin."

You are just looking for a scrap and that makes you no better than those that glamorize, or patrioticize, war/service to country. Lot of hollow crap that incites as opposed to honest remembrances of those lost. Seems to me you are the one doing the trivializing. Your Dad served because he was conscripted. He had a choice to not serve but he did. There is always a choice. So quit your finger pointing and accept that not everyone here sees things the same way - that's a fact. If you had read all of the posts and not taken issue with the one or two that didn't meet with your approval maybe you wouldn't have gotten so defensive/offensive.

Just my opinion -

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Jeri
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:00 AM

Some people fall into the trap of believing a thing has to mean the same thing to them as it does to others. Memorial Day is about remembering the individuals, the "little people" who gave their lives for their home. It's not about the generals, admirals, political leaders or causes but about the soldiers, sailors and airmen and civilians

"Causes are ashes where children lie slain."

Causes are ashes.
Viet Nam vets, in particular, were/are often hated - because of the causes they represented and the causes of the haters, not because of who they were. If a person makes their cause more important than the people, they're doing virtually the same thing as any war-monger. If a person has enough hate in your heart to tell Mrs. Smith to her face that her son deserved to die or simply be forgotten, they're more heartless than any vet marching in a parade. Memorial Day, for me, is for people, not causes.

I planted things in my garden yesterday. I recorded a couple of songs for the Mudcat CD. I spent a lot of time outdoors and noticed the beauty there. And when it was night and the storm rolled in, I watched the lightening and listened to the thunder and the gentle rain; the rain that washes ashes away.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:25 AM

Like I said, I and my family don't recognize the day, nor do we remember lost loved ones "with the nation". Ever. We have done our grieving privately, and will continue to do so. No one in our family has ever enlisted in the military--all were conscripts. Therein lies a huge difference, in my experience. People who have made a free choice to enlist simply do not view the military and the nationalist fervor surrounding it in the same way that conscripts and their families do.

Conscripts go fight wars because they fear the consequences of not complying with the law, and what their government will do to them for non-compliance.

My vitriol is directed at the people who say I dishonor those who have fought by not acquiescing to their point of view. Whether people view themselves as militarists or not isn't the point. Getting up in somebody's face because they choose NOT to honor their dead "with the nation" is what I object to.

On Saturday, I had a nouveau patriot twenty something kid in my face at the liquor store about the "honoring of the war dead". How did that one start? I noticed that the liquor store was going to be open on Memorial Day, and so was making small talk with him (the cashier). I said I was sorry he had to work the holiday, meaning it sincerely, the same I would if someone had to work on New Years or whatever legal holiday.

He then went off on a tirade about the only people who would shop the liquor store on Memorial Day were a bunch of drunks, and he didn't think that was right. He went on to say he thought everyone should do something patriotic, especially for those who had died on 9/11.

If people don't realize just how strong the hate is out there for anyone who isn't towing the Republican Party Patriot line these days--including in our everyday lives (like at the liquor store, or checking in to Mudcat) they don't have a clue as to what I'm on about.

We should all have the our rights honored to spend Memorial Day any way we wish to, without people getting up in our faces about choosing not to celebrate the day at all. Which is the way, I'm guessing, most Americans actually spend Memorial Day. Picnics and barbeques with friends and family? Sure, a lot of people do that. Me and my neighbors (most of whom are former military people too) mostly did yard work.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:31 AM

Well I felt some of what I think Guest, Matriot has felt, but I separate the way I feel about our politicians, including Bush, and the way they used the day to promote their brand of patriotism and the supposed "war" we are in, from a day set aside to remember the dead. In our family it was always to remember all of those passed on, no matter who they were or how they died, military or not.

There is nothing wrong with being angry about the way patriotism, war, etc. are being touted in our country right now, but I do not believe this is the thread for the vitriol posted by Matriot, nor do I think Memorial Day has to just be about the loss of military loss. Just my feelings on it.

kat


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:33 AM

Well said GUEST,Peace Matriot. Same thing we are all saying - only this time you did it in a non-accusatory manner. Makes a big difference.

There is one little thing I'd like to address here though. Your Dad served because he chose it as the lesser of two evils. It was still a choice. And to say that it is different from those who signed up is a cop out and a disservice to that choice. I respect choices. Why people make them is none of my business.

I am glad you had a good weekend. I lucked out and was able to not work at anything except thowing some hay to horses and enjoyiong some fine friends. I can mow the yard tonight.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:35 AM

And Big Mick, I suffer no delusions about my family suffering more than most, so that comment was just as way off as your original and subsequent post. We made no sacrifices. The conscripts were merely doing what the law required them to do. No one in my family views military service as a sacrifice, because it isn't. That sort of language is just more glorification of nationalist war sentiments, and manipulating the grief of soldier's survivors by the patriot propagandists.

The "fuck you" was for having the gall to suggest to a complete stranger that they spit on soldiers returning from war. Your arrogance about your view and opinion being more right than mine, and your presumption about a total stranger, made that a REALLY WAY OFF comment. You get as good as you give. What you gave me was a "fuck you" without using the actual words.

If you want to know why my response to you has been so strong, I suggest you reread your own original response to me.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:41 AM

Norton1, I beg to differ. I do see a big difference in attitudes towards the military between conscripts and enlistees, especially the lifers and those who served "like their fathers" etc etc.

To say that conscripts have a free choice simply isn't correct. Enlistees aren't faced with prison time if they choose not to go into military service. Conscripts are. They lose their freedom, if they don't report for military service when told to do so. That makes for a much different mindset, in my experience.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:47 AM

No one accused Guest,Peace Matriot of spitting on anyone. It was analogized that this type of attitude cleared the way, made it OK, to do the actual spitting. So it's sort of like the implied "Fuck you" that was perceived. Respond to what you perceive or respond to reality. No difference.

Looks to me like I even saw an apology in there from Mick - like someone above said - this thread has moved to something other than it was originally intended. If you fell so strongly about your view post a thread to it so we can have a real free for all instead of this little sniping thing. It still doesn't mean anything.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:50 AM

Katlaughing, why is this thread not the appropriate place to express my opinions? All the originator of thread asked was "what did you do for Memorial Day"? The thread was not titled "How did you honor the war dead on Memorial Day"? which I would most certainly have respected. There was no vitriol whatsoever in that post. And I am distinguishing between the nation's and the nation's military leaders, the media, the military's organizations (VFW, etc) and the grunts. It is many a conscripted grunt's perspective I share.

Maybe you need to reread Big Mick's and a few other people's response's to my original post to this thread, to understand why I came back at Big Mick the way I did, eh?

Here again, is what I first said here...nothing vitriolic here, just a strong opinion which was different from those which had preceded it, which I also acknowledged. I simply replied to the questions asked by Banjer.

"I did what I always do on Memorial Day, which is ignore the war mongerers to the best of my ability, and enjoy an extra day off.

As to the "first Memorial Day since 9/11" thing, I think it is over reach, and an obvious attempt to keep 9/11 at the top of the news cycles. Cheap and sleezy militarist sentimentalizing and sensationalizing. Memorial Day is all about propagandizing for the military. Victims of 9/11 weren't soldiers, but civilians. We aren't at war, we were victims of a terrorist attack. I make those distinctions, despite the ruling elite's attempts to blur them, and make "linkages" where they don't exist.

I'm sure my opinion won't be welcomed in this thread, seeing the posts which have come before it. But there you have it."


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:57 AM

Big Mick.. Sorry you have to put up with these snide postings on this day, because you are an honourable man. I want you to know that many years from now, my children will still honour your mates. They know the cost of freedom, and were taught to respect such sacrifice. For us it remains bittersweet duty. Until death, Salute!


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 12:04 PM

And here, from Big Mick's original post responding to mine, a few select quotes, to illustrate why I reacted the way I did. Now, perhaps others don't view this as a pretty preachy, judgmental response made to evoke guilt for not towing the party line, but I certainly did.

And Norton1, again I beg to differ with you. You said, "No one accused Guest,Peace Matriot of spitting on anyone." I quote directly from Big Mick's 2nd post responding to me, "People like you are the ones that spit on me when I came home"

If you remove the "People like" part of that sentence Norton1, what do you have? "you are the ones that spit on me when I came home" is what you have.

Some pretty god awful judgments from Big Mick's first post, where his blatant attempt to play the guilt card first failed with me:

"Can you not find it within you to at least use the day to mourn the loss of these young ones, and honor their sacrifice?"

"Your post, if read by parents that have lost their sons/daughters, would seem so heartless and I don't get that sense from it."

"...can you not see the disrespect you shower on the fallen?"


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 28 May 02 - 12:11 PM

Thanks to Banjer for the reminder about what Memorial Day is... a day to remember those who fought and died in service to our country. I had a Father and two Uncles who enlisted immediately after Pearl Harbor was attacked. They thought it was the right thing to do. Through the rest of their lives they continued to think they did the right thing. What peace of mind it must give to know that you did what you believed in, no matter the pain or sacrifice involved...to feel that you played some part in defending the people you love, and in liberating millions of others from subjection, mass execution, or enslavement.

And to know that nothing and no one can take that feeling away from you, ever again.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: MMario
Date: 28 May 02 - 12:22 PM

"People like you are the ones that spit on me when I came home" If you remove the "People like" part of that sentence Norton1, what do you have?

You have not only a mis-qoute, but a mis-qoute taken out of context.

sorta like "My family could honor their dead, but we don't. We never have, and never will. "


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:13 PM

My matrilineal uncle was w/the infantry attached to a tank battalion in North Africa, and was killed in the carnage known as the "Battle of the Bulge". I also had a patrilineal uncle who was one of those air force heros for a day after his plane was shot down and he was killed. The military intercepted his last letter home to my grandparents, and used it for propaganda without their permission--so the letter was splashed all over in the paper. Both men were mere cannon fodder for the war machine. No great moral sacrifice, no glory, just an utter waste of human life.

The "hero" uncle apparently received medals posthumously, and all that. But the story is told by one of my aunts that neither of my grandparents ever mentioned his name after his death. In fact, on that side of the family, my uncle's service and death in WWII was almost like a family skeleton--we rarely spoke of it, even after my grandparents were dead. I have no idea what my grandparents ever did with all the memorabilia stuff the military sent to them, as we never saw any evidence of it in their home, and my aunt never recalled seeing it either. Just a few pictures of that uncle is all that has survived in our family photos and memorabilia.

My father, also in the infantry, was a POW for 8 months. He never spoke of his war experiences, just like many other conscripts who were forced to serve. My father never expressed any desire to congregate with former soldiers, to tell war stories, or to memorialize "the fallen", including his brother the hero, to whom he was very close. He got as far away from the military as fast as he could once he got home, and never looked back--at least, not in any way he shared with family and friends.

I asked him not long before he died why he never talked about his experiences in the war. The subject came up when our daughter, working on a school "family history" project, asked him about his time in the war. He told her the basic information, ie when he was drafted, where he was stationed, the fact that he finished the war as a POW in Germany--but nothing else.

His response to my questioning was that no one should be proud of what they did in war, especially those who saw combat in the military. He also said if he knew what the US was doing "in the name of freedom" going into the draft what he did coming out, he would have chosen prison as a resister. He never tried to justify his military service as "fighting fascism" or any such thing. In fact, all I really remember strongly of that conversation with him, was his comment that what he did in WWII was "spill the blood of new innocents in the same old blood soaked dirt rich men had fought over for centuries". He never seemed ashamed of himself, just disgusted with the whole experience, and the ways it was glorified. I expect there were more than a few WWII vets who shared a lot of those same feelings as my father had about it. But we aren't allowed to hear their voices on Memorial Day. Maybe if we were, we wouldn't have to endure the folly of war anymore.

Personally, I was most deeply influenced in my coming of age years during the Vietnam War, by the writings of Kurt Vonnegut. My father is the person who first introduced me to "Slaughterhouse Five". Ironically, Vonnegut, like my matrilineal uncle who was killed there, was an infantryman at the Battle of the Bulge. He survived and was sent to Dresden.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:14 PM

I think we've all been sucked in, again...*sigh*...this Guest, Matriot does not sound like a "complete stranger" to this Forum. Last I will post/feed this apparent troll.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:24 PM

Cross-posting makes me think perhaps I was wrong, if so, I apologise.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:48 PM

Actually katlaughing, you're right--I'm not a "complete stranger" to this forum, I've just never posted under this moniker before. Yet, I remain anonymous even with this moniker and all the others I've used over time, don't I? You can't connect with me, even though my presence is a familiar one, because I choose to keep it that way.

You, OTOH, choose to play the tired old Mudcat game of labelling someone who voices a dissenting opinion and isn't a familiar member or guest, a troll. So there you go again katlaughing, being predictably xenophobic. Yes, I am a familiar stranger to Mudcat. But that doesn't make me a troll, and you know it.

Why are you so afraid of someone you don't know posting a dissenting point of view? I've just shared a lot of information about my family actually, which should make my views understandable to those who are attempting to understand them. Which you clearly aren't.

You are suggesting my contribution be ignored, not because I'm an anonymous troll, but because it rocks people's boats. So be it.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:49 PM

Just Fuck Viet Nam

I'm so tired of that damn war and what it did to us...to all of us...the things it took away...the things we lost....and the people, always the people, it took away or tried to ruin (and often did)........

We were a generation raised by parents who fought in WWII and who did what they believed. We were taught to do the same....what we believed. We'd grown up with Pearl Harbor, Iwo Jima, Ira Hayes........Even Davy Crockett through Walt Disney said, "A man's gotta' do what he thinks is right." When VietNam came along we were asked to do what was right, but the world had changed and as we moved onto the playing board, all the sqaures which had always been black or white were varying shades of gray that kept on changing. We moved about the board as pawns in someone elses game, but we moved by the best lights we could muster at the time. These many years later, we are all in our 50's and wondering what the hell it was about. Some never came back either physically or mentally, some are living in personal hells, some have moved on after great turmoil and soul searching, some question the government that would then or now ask their young people to make the decisions we made for the reasons they gave.

For many of us it was a signal event and our lives are forever colored by what we did and what we believed. It was not WWII and the areas of doubt affected us all. Read the responses in the threads we run and you'll see some are overtly proud, some are still confused, some are in denial, some are looking for peace.................We owe it to the children we have not to let that happen again. Yet the best we can offer is the same our parents gave us and that is for the strength to have the courage of their convictions.

For those who fought and died in that war or any other, they have my respect and I honor their memory and what they did. I also honor those who came back from wars and were never able to reclaim even the slightest of their former selves. They too are the fallen.

Matriot, you say that your family was conscripts and "Conscripts go fight wars because they fear the consequences of not complying with the law, and what their government will do to them for non-compliance." I'd say that would have a telling effect on my attitude.....if not theirs. We all did what we believed and it's easier to live if we live our convictions. These many years later we can each try and reconcile our lives and knowing the choices we made were the ones we did choose helps us to understand each other a little better. I wish you and yours and the rest of the world the peace it so rightly deserves.

Spaw




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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 01:59 PM

Kat. This person learned nothing from his family, and is content to maintain a personal negative agenda regarding military history and service. Perhaps, if like Mick and I he saw the tears on the faces of veterans; and hear their conversations (seldom about war, usually about "absent friends") During memorial day services Matriot would glean a different understanding about the reticence to discuss the war. War is murder, fear and loathing, extremes of passion, destruction of beauty and belief. Concluding with a sadness and despair that never leaves the soul... Silence, innability to talk about horror, is the hallmark of the veteran. Respect them and the day, and count yourselves lucky, that such people fought and that you do not have to. Furthermore,if anyone has trouble with concscience, ask what the world would be like if Hitler and the Japanese had won the conflict...


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:10 PM

The Debt
No more old England will they see --
Those men who've died for you and me.

So lone and cold they lie; but we,
We still hve life; we still may greet
Our pleasant friends in home and street;
We still have life, are able still
To climb the turf of Bignor Hill,
To see the placid sheep go by,
To hear the sheep-dog's eager cry,
To feel the sun, to taste the rain,
To smell the Autumn's scents again
Beneath the brown and gold and red
Which old October's brush has spread,
To hear the robin in the lane,
To look upon the English sky.

So young they were, so strong and well,
Until the bitter summons fell --
Too young to die.
Yet there on foreign soil they lie,
So pitiful, with glassy eye
And limbs all rumbled anyhow:
Quite finished, now.
On every heart -- lest we forget --
Secure at home -- engrave this debt!

Too delicate is flesh to be
The shield that nations interpose
'Twixt red Ambition and his foes --
The bastion of Liberty.
So beautiful their bodies were,
Built with so exquisite a care:
So young and fit and lithe and fair.
The very flower of us were they,
The very flower, but yesterday!
Yet now so pitiful they lie,
Where love of country bade them hie
To fight this fierce Caprice -- and die.
All mangled now, where shells have burst,
And lead and steel have done their worst;
The tender tissues ploughed away,
The years' slow processes effaced:
The Mother of us all -- disgraced.

And some leave wives behind, young wives;
Already some have launched new lives:
A little daughter, little son --
For thus this blundering world goes on.
But never more will any see
The old secure felicity,
The kindness that made us glad
Before the world went mad.
They'll never hear another bird,
Another gay or loving word --
Those men who lie so cold and lone,
Far in a country not their own;
Those men who died for you and me,
That England still might sheltered be
And all our lives go on the same
(Although to live is almost shame).

E.V. Lucas

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:12 PM

Spaw, I think the idea that 16 to 18 year old boys knowing what a conviction is, let alone what their own are, is pretty unrealistic. Especially when they've been brainwashed for all their brief liftetime about the glory of war and serving one's country.

Nobody tells them they are going to ruthlessly murder boys like themselves, or be murdered by them. That they or their buddies will rape little girls and old women, and that they will be witnesses or accomplices to such acts. Or steal war booty that belongs to the people whose homes and lives they have just ravaged. Nobody talks about the lack of conviction necessary to "follow orders" to do those things, or not to do those things and doing them anyway.

Again, I disagree that conscripts have a choice to serve. Nowadays, in the US at least, we are a bit more humane towards those who refuse to serve. In most places in the world today, a boy who refuses to serve is shot, usually on the spot. Most conscripts nowadays, like most conscripts historically, have not "chosen" to fight in the wars they are conscripted to fight in. And many of them are younger than sixteen.

I think posters here have a conveniently Western European/US (skewed) view of what a conscript is--you don't seem to have any understanding of the fact that most conscripts walking this earth today never make a free choice to serve. They are forced to serve at gunpoint. It wasn't so long ago that was the "choice" European conscripts faced too. Serve or be shot. Only a lucky few ever escaped conscription and survived.

This idea of "choosing" military service is very, very recent, and a luxury still for most boys growing up in war zones.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:24 PM

I was 16, I volunteered, I knew that if I did not fight, my world would change, and my life become worthless. I did not fight for you, or my future children; I fought for my survival and the survival of my family friends and world. Matriot, learn before its too late. We treat everyone as children until 18; but I have found more intelligence and wisdom in teenagers, than you would credit them with.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:39 PM

Of course conscripts and their families views are colored in a way that reflects their personal experience. What enlisted men and their families' views aren't colored by theirs also? Many conscripts feel like a victims for being conscripted, just like idealistic enlisted men hope to feel like heros for enlisting. Kurt Vonnegut had dreams of fighting the good fight, and being a good soldier for the cause of freedom too. But he, like so many vets, came away from the war with radically different views of war, and what it accomplishes.

Are they any less heroic for saying so?

My father never forbade us joining in on military celebrations and memorials, and never made any attempt to force his opinions and beliefs about military service on us kids. Of course, he didn't have to, because he only had daughters. Yet, he just never joined in with the jingoist breastbeaters howling about the rotten kids questioning US involvement in Vietnam, never preached to young people during the war about whether they should serve or not. He was never an anti-war protestor. He was simply a decent man who hated war, and refused to join in anything that he felt glorified it, especially WWII, which he claimed was the most glorified war in US history.

That was one thing he was quite clear about--his belief that the reason why WWII was the most glorified of all US wars was because it was through that war that the US became the world's most powerful military superpower. He thought the Korean and Vietnam Wars were the most reviled of US wars, because they brought us face to face with ourselves as aggressors, and with all the arrogance of our military might being abused in the name of freedom, God, country, and killing communists.

You've no right to demonize me because my way is different from yours. I do what I do on Memorial Day not to dishonor your war dead, but to honor mine. My father didn't like Memorial Day, and nor does my mother. Neither ever made a big deal out of not celebrating it, and normally, nor do I.

I guess this year is the first time I've felt like I'm being attacked for not participating in the war machine's Memorial Day festivities, so maybe 9/11 has changed people more than I've been aware of. Now that I think of it, I doubt my original post to this thread, had it been in the same thread last year, would have evoked the same responses as we've seen here today.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:54 PM

Pardon me if I misunderstood, but I thought from your previous posts Matriot that you were discussing your family and the United States. I have no knowledge of conscripts from other places.....I was talking about this place and then and when you say, "Spaw, I think the idea that 16 to 18 year old boys knowing what a conviction is, let alone what their own are, is pretty unrealistic. Especially when they've been brainwashed for all their brief liftetime about the glory of war and serving one's country," I'll have to take issue with you on it.

Most of us I think had a good idea what a conviction was and many felt it a strong need to fight for their country. Some waited to be drafted and others hoped they never would be. Some saw a different war and chose not to go. Now I grant you that at that age the decisions made are not always the best, but then again, I'm 53 and that's still true. However, I don't think we make bad decisions at the moment we decide. We don't intentionally say, "I think I'll make a stupid decision." In retrospect many of them are, but when we make them we do so because we believe it is the right thing to do.

And yes, as I stated above, we grew up on a diet of Pearl Harbor and Ira Hayes, but some chose for varying reasons to go against that even if it was strongly "inbred." They chose to accept the punishment of the government in some way and for some reason. No matter why, they followed a conviction. Others went to war and I think for many the conviction was certainly there. Afterwards, some may have wished for otherwise, others could justify their actions, and some were left with nothing to have any conviction with. My point here is that we were all victims and many, if not all, followed their beliefs at the time.

So for all of those who acted in their belief and for what they believed to be in the best interests of their country, I pay my respect on Memorial Day. And I also pay my respects to some who have fallen for the country in other types of warfare, even the ones who truly had no choice, like the 4 little girls in Birmingham in September or '63. But that's another story.......

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 May 02 - 02:59 PM

WEll cross posting means that we need to answer something else and frankly, I'll pass.

Matriot, I think you have stated your views and that of your family pretty well in your last post and had that one come a lot earlier, i doubt you would have received the reaction you did.

Best for the Future.......

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 May 02 - 03:08 PM

Nobody tells them they are going to ruthlessly murder boys like themselves, or be murdered by them. That they or their buddies will rape little girls and old women, and that they will be witnesses or accomplices to such acts. Or steal war booty that belongs to the people whose homes and lives they have just ravaged. Nobody talks about the lack of conviction necessary to "follow orders" to do those things, or not to do those things and doing them anyway.

I don't know where you get your information but where I went to school on this subject I was told time and time again that I would be killing other men my own age. I never raped anyone, and no one that I know did so, I didn't steal anything, nor did anyone I know, and was an accomplice to the belief that as an American it was my job to go when my country called. In hindsight I don't really give a rat's ass whether or not I should have gone or not. I can't do squat about it now so what's the big deal? I'm sure as shit not going to get whiney about the great injustices of my choices. They are my choices and I'll live with them. Hopefully make some changes with my own kids. And be proud of whatever choices they make.

You folks make a lot of assumptions about who we "War mongers" are and you don't know shit about me. If you get sanctimonious you're gonna get a shot back. It's called human nature. What I, and most of the Veterans responding here are about, is remembering the loss. I don't do the big deals about this day. I visit a grave or two of men I knew who fell. And I REMEMBER.

Jesus Motherfucking Christ you think that I don't live with the same things your Dad did just because I joined? You think my family reacts to war any differently than yours? Well I don't believe so. I made a choice, your Dad made a choice, and I'd bet my next paycheck that he and I saw things much more alike than you will ever be able to attest to. You are operating on second-hand information. Your Dad and I knew it first hand. And the draftees I fought beside held the same beliefs that I did.

Now here - I've left you plenty of stuff to take out of context and butcher around. Same fucking thing the God Damned politicians do when they incite us to go off and do the bidding of those who elect them. You're no better than they are.

I'm not mad - I'm hurt - and if your Dad heard how you were mouthing off he'd be hurt also. I'm betting he was not an offensive man - normally neither am I. But I don't have a lot of respect for people that talk out their rears about something they really don't have a clue about. And then hide behide misinterpretations of what others, who do know, have said gleaned from experience.

My last on this one also - have a riot with it - you have something else to say to me then PM me -

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 03:10 PM

You confuse debate with demonising, Matriot. Your initial post was very negative and agressive. It painted people who do observe the intent of memorial day as "War Mongerers" Given that emotion, and other human communicative signals are absent in this media, we were left to interpret your intial post from its content. Polite society and good manners are a rapidly disappearing faculty; your initial post lacked enough decency to respond to otherwise. I dont object you having a different opinion, but i do object to your moral turpitude.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 02 - 03:26 PM

I take back my apology and I am lauging my ass off at your calling me xenophobic. You know better than that. I was right, a troll is a troll, even in bitter female form.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 03:39 PM

You got me on that one Spaw, I made a leap from one context to another without bringing anyone along. Sorry about that. I also realize, after having just reread all my posts here, that I said my brother was disabled in Vietnam. It was my brother in law. I have no brothers.

Also, I've made another mistake by using the word "conscription" when I should have said "conscription and forced recruitment.

Those who are often forcibly recruited and/or conscripted are child soldiers. This page at the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers gives an overview of what I was referring to without actually referring to it! Again, I apologize for confusing matters.

http://www.child-soldiers.org


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 28 May 02 - 03:58 PM

Most of us, if we live long enough, find something worth living for. But those who see that nothing is worth dying for are to be pitied, for their beliefs don't transcend their mortal existence.

Let's keep Memorial Day as a remembrance of those who found something worth living and dying for.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 May 02 - 04:22 PM

Thank you Leej....And Banj, I am sorry for any hijacking of this thread. It is a day to think of others and what they have meant.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 04:58 PM

US Memorial Day is a day of remembrance by dictum.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 02 - 05:07 PM

Here's some interesting history about what used to be called "Decoration Day" along with some info on new bills which have been introduced, one of which would move it back to the original date of May 30th, FWIW.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,Peace Matriot
Date: 28 May 02 - 06:36 PM

Ultimately, it is important that any process of memorialization confront what memorials do well, and what they don't do. National memorials traditionally have been built with dual purposes: to instruct the nation's citizens about patriotism (often using historical figures, such as war heros, both living and dead), and to honor the dead.

The tendency to teach by dictum is one the state cannot resist. Yet, by anyone's accounting nowadays, few among the citizenry actually participate in any sort of Memorial Day observance. In fact, to address this perceived affront, there has been an official movement afoot to correct our lack of patriotism on the day, which you can read all about here at the "Help Restore the Traditional Day of Observance for Memorial Day" page:

http://www.usmemorialday.org/act.html

Memorials do not teach well about history, since that communal function is superseded on individual levels by bereaved families who choose to remember those who died rather than to understand why they died. One can visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Oklahoma City National Memorial without understanding, for instance, the fraught history of the Vietnam War and the reasons why American lives were lost in Vietnam, or what aspects of American society gave rise to the right-wing ideology that bombed Oklahoma City. It is important that any communal memorializing done to mourn the individual dead not foreclose on discussions about why their lives were lost. Yet that is exactly what memorialization by dictum does.

The memorials that resonate most powerfully within a culture are those that allow those debates to continue, that don't try to contain history and memory, or censor it. Rather they create a space where memorials are generated in all their conflict.

It is no coincidence that in this post-modern era, our demands for individual memorializing within the public sphere leads us back to more ancient ways of remembering the dead. I think more and more families are choosing to do just that--remember their war dead on their terms, not the nation's, and to mourn and grieve privately, not publicly. Prior to the Civil War in the US, memorializing of the war dead was always, always a private family affair, led by war widows. In the post-Civil War era, the role of the war widows was co-opted by the male military and political leaders who wished to use the Decoration Day, and Soldiers' Memorial Days as days when they could further their own agendas and purposes by standing beside the public memorial sites, and being put on pedestals floated in Memorial Day parades. Is it any wonder so many families of the war dead never participate in such shams? We know the score, and we don't wish to have the memories of our loved ones used and abused by politicians looking to buy our votes with cheap patriotic sentiments.

In the face of absence of our war dead, especially an absence so violently and tragically wrought at the cost of so many lives, all people feel a need to create a presence of some kind to fill that painful void. I realize it is considered unAmerican, especially in the wake of 9/11, to suggest that the celebration of Memorial Day is an empty, hollow one, but for me and my family, it is.

In many of the most powerful memorials I have ever seen, such as the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, which incorporates the skeletal ruins of a building, and many World War II memorials, such as Coventry Cathedral in England, or the preserved Nazi concentration camps--the memorials speak to history in their preservation of the ruins of destroyed structures. For the most part, these memorials use the shards of the past to convey a warning and a bitter message about the human capacity for violence.

Sadly, I see none of that in the US Memorial Day celebrations. And until I do, I and my family will remain anti-Memorial Day. I do no disgrace to the fallen war dead to take such a stance. It is because of the obscenity of the carnage of war, that I demand more of my country in this regard. I demand that we at least make some attempt, no matter how feeble, to keep a bitter message about the human capacity for violence, in the equation when we celebrate the day.

If that makes me an outcast at Mudcat, well I can live with quite comfortably with that.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 08:16 PM

"Listen to David Rovics..."
Pete Seeger

From Dave Rovic's Song Lyrics website:

http://members.aol.com/drovics/buml.htm

Soldier On The Bum
David Rovics

He grew up right in this neighborhood
He was on his way to going far
He could throw a ball like no one
He was gonna be a football star

And when he had a chance to travel
And go to a far-off shore
He packed his bags and went
Away to fight the war

Chorus
And you can see him in the alley with a bottle in his hand
Ready at attention for an officer's command
He's waiting for a discharge, but it never seems to come
Used to be a soldier, now he's a soldier on the bum

He was proud to be a Navy Seal
To be part of the team
Following the dictates
Of this American dream

He threw boys out of airplanes
To combat the commie threat
Now he spends each day
Just trying to forget

Chorus

And some days when the vodka
Can't keep the visions from his thoughts
Of the horror he has seen
And the terror he has wrought
He limps up and down the sidewalk
Yells out all he has to say
But the empty storefronts do not listen
And all the people turn away

Chorus


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Banjer
Date: 28 May 02 - 08:28 PM

Sorry I asked........


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 09:32 PM

C'mon Banjer, what did you expect when you asked about a military holiday in a folk forum with as many anti-war leftists, as former military people?


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Amergin
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:30 PM

Banjer ddon't be sorry....

this weekend I started on a project for my gramma....it will be for christmas if I can pull it off...and I sincerely hope to....I am looking for stories about my uncle Jim (her brother) who was a sergeant in Korea...and later flew for Air America in Vietnam....he died several years ago of lung cancer...but you can still see the tears in her eyes...when she thinks of him....

One thing...my family can pretty much trace our war dead to both sides of the Civil War...and both sides of the War of Independence...

Mick...and Norton...you both have my deepest respect...don't let some wanker get to you....


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 May 02 - 10:46 PM

Banj, I am the one who should be sorry for allowing myself to get dragged into all of this..........and Nathan me lad, that sounds like a truly worthy project for your gram....and you too.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:13 PM

I stayed home with post folklife food poisoning...I think Memorial Day is by far the lesser of the two holidays, the other being November 11. I don't think the date should be changed to May 30 as it is does not stand for a particular day as far as I know, as does November 11. And who was it that implied that officers don't die or whatever in wars? They sure as hell did in my war.

mg


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:20 PM

The Call Up by The Clash

It's up to you not to heed the call up You must not act the way you were brought up Who knows the reason why you have grown up Who knows the plans or why they were drawn up

[Refrain] It's up to you not to heed the call up I don't wanna die It's up to you not to hear the call up I don't wanna kill For he who will die is who will kill.

Maybe I wanna see the wheatfields Over Kiev and down to the sea All the young people down the ages They gladly marched off to die Proud city fathers used to watch them Tears in their eyes There is a rose that I want to live for Although God knows I may not have met her There is a dance and I should be with her There is a town unlike any other

[Refrain]

Who gives you work and why should you do it At 55 minutes past eleven There is a rose.... [Fade out with refrain and chant "Hup, two, three, four, I love the Marine Corps..."]


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Big Mick
Date: 28 May 02 - 11:51 PM

Well, Matriot, I did go back and read the first post and when taken in its complete context (which you seem unwilling to do) it is not intended, nor would a reasonable person, take it as offensive. But so be it. But while you are quoting you forgot the part where I made it clear that I was not chastising but questioning. Perhaps my later line was uncalled for, where I compared you to those that spit at me. Really happened in the airport in San Francisco. I took my civvies and personal effects out of my duffel bag and put the bag in the trash. If that is what set you off, then accept my apologies, please.

When it comes to the rest of your arguments, take the time to read my past posts. Go to the Vietnam songs thread for a view of how I think on the Generals/Admirals. I can't stand anything that glorifies war. I am not sure why I ever posted that I was a Vet on this forum to begin with. I don't have any problem with your view of the warlords using these things to their own ends. What I do have a problem with is your fucking superior attitude towards those of us who choose to use this day to teach our children, and remind others, that a price (whether wanted or not) was paid. I personally could give a shit if you ever tip your hat to the lives that are represented on those monuments. I don't give a flying fuck if you can't look at the names and at least take a moment on this or any other day to acknowledge that each one is life cut short. I see many things in those names, not the least of which is that people I FUCKING KNEW died for a cause that they weren't even sure they supported. Your bonehead, elitist fucking attitude that they marched off and died for no good reason is a typical of those with pat answers for their own fucking misery. Some probably did march off blindly. Others, like myself, found themselves facing death wondering what for. I AM NOT ASKING YOU TO ACCEPT ANYFUCKING THING ABOUT THE MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX, RICHARD NIXON, YOUR DAD OR MY MISERY. My point is simply that we have a day to ponder those names and reflect on why they are dead. For some that is inspirational in a positive way. For others it is inspirational in a negative way. For folks like me, it is a source of pain and determination that this thing that took these young men and women will NEVER be glorified. And it is a moment for me to say to a few of the names that I wish we could go fishing, have a beer, talk about R&R, grow old, and die when we were supposed to.

Like it or not, I sorrow for you families losses and sacrifices, and I pray that no young person will have to face it again. As we see today, my hopes are in vain. But I will honor these people by questioning, singing their songs, and challenging at every opportunity those that make the decisions. And I salute the warriors that make it OK for you to have your opinion. As I have said, we agree fiercely on most things. But the fucking know it all chip you have on your shoulder is easy to have because you've got all the answers. Tell it to the folks on the wall.

Oh.............yeah.........I forgot. Peace. I'm outta this one.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Ebbie
Date: 29 May 02 - 01:34 AM

"I do what I do on Memorial Day not to dishonor your war dead, but to honor mine." Matriot, you lie. Your intent without question was to dishonor those on the thread who remember their loss, and who hurt.

I come from a pacifistic family (they went into alternative service, not prison) and I am against war, capital punishment and the fistfight in the back alley- but I live in the real world and like it or not, the real world indulges in all of that.

That said, I choose to think for myself- and I don't bring "my family" into every point I wish to make as though they and I were joined at the hip. I'm beginning to think you have no such family at all.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Banjer
Date: 29 May 02 - 06:14 AM

C'mon Banjer, what did you expect when you asked about a military holiday in a folk forum with as many anti-war leftists, as former military people?

I expected answers to a sincere question, not a raging debate of right or wrong. I myself am not a hawk or a dove....I would rather see solution to the world's problems be achieved diplomaticaly and amicably by both sides. But that is in a PERFECT WORLD...if it becomes necessary to defend the ideals of this great nation in which we live then so be it!

I don't enjoy at all going to the cemetery and visiting with David, Danny, Bobby, Mike or Denny, I go out of a sense of respect for them on a day set aside in their honor.

If people like Peace Matriot chooses to ignore the day, so be it. He/She is entitled to live life as they choose, after all that's what these people whose memory we commemorate fought and died for. It would seem to me that the pacifists among us owe a lot to those who gave the last great measure. It is because of their sacrifice that our freedom of choice and expression remains alive today.

There are those among us right here on this forum who declined to serve in the military when called. I have GREAT respect for them because they utilized the rights we have and paid another price, (in some cases their freedom for a while). They have the courage to stand up for what they believe is right!

Banj, I am the one who should be sorry for allowing myself to get dragged into all of this..........NO Dammit, you (nor anyone else)should be sorry at all....You, 'Spaw and others here on this forum are excercising those very rights that I am writing about! Never apologize for having an opinon, when you don't allow yourself to have an opinion and stand up for what YOU feel is right, just following like another sheep in the herd, that's when you need to apologize. You would need to apologize to the memories of the folks we honored on Memorial Day for having died in vain!


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST
Date: 29 May 02 - 07:50 AM

First of all, this isn't just a forum strictuly for friends and supporteers of the US military. Second, you are never going to get people who don't want to honor the military to honor the military, no matter how pissed off that makes you. Third, you sound like a bunch of foaming at the mouth war mongrels. "Our side has the might which makes us right, and EVERYONE better god damn appreciate us". That's how you sound to me.

Give it a rest, will you?


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Paul from Hull
Date: 29 May 02 - 11:12 AM

Frankly, Guest 07:50 AM, if thats how this thread 'sounds to you' I suspect your getting input into your brain thats not appearing to the rest of us here on Mudcat.....

...but thats MILD compared to what 'Peace Matriot' is suffering from.... to use their own dead forebears (IF they exist - I find it vey uncomfortable to think there is someone around who could do it) to simply TROLL here shows that they are very, very ill indeed.

No doubt I've upset some people here who dont deserve to be upset, but I'm sorry, thats just how upset I am over this.

Not sure why, but I suppose I've just picked up how I'd feel if all this had happened in response to a Thread about the UK's Remembrance Day


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 29 May 02 - 11:23 AM

I don't think we need a day to remember. We need a day to forget.

mg


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: 53
Date: 29 May 02 - 01:57 PM

I spent my memorial day with my family at a cookout. I sure am greatful for my loved ones cause there'll come a day when we won't have them or either thay won't have us.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Banjer
Date: 29 May 02 - 03:48 PM

I suppose it's like any public forum, someone says 'My it sure is a beautiful day today', and some idiot will start a rant about how its about time that is is and we'd have more of them if ths or that group didn't cause pollution or some other disaster. Gets so a body can't make a normal statement or ask an innocent question but what some right or left leaner won't pickup on it and try to further their cause, not just in this forum but in a lot of places. I guess it's a sign of the times.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 29 May 02 - 03:54 PM

Banjer, thanks for making us think about it, anyway. War and war casualties are pretty emotional topics for most of us, and at least this kind of discussion gives us all a chance to hash out those feelings. Its better than firing up the barbecue and just sweeping the whole reason for the holiday under the rug.

You done good, pal.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 29 May 02 - 05:00 PM

Lonesome EJ - how elequent! I do agree. You done good!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: artbrooks
Date: 29 May 02 - 05:02 PM

I was in the US Army. I served in Vietnam. Most of the people I know that did came home physically and mentally intact, and have put that all long behind them. Some didn't come back and some can't ever put it all aside. Sometimes I remember those I served with (and those I never knew) privately and sometimes it feels better to do it in the company of others.

GUEST,Peace Matriot has a right to express his/her/its opinion. I won't say that the preservation of that right is the reason for a lot of those white monuments, because I don't want to set him/her/it off again. I think that a choice NOT to remember those who served, voluntarily or not, is wierd, but then I guess I have a right to my opinion as well.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: catspaw49
Date: 29 May 02 - 05:12 PM

Well Leej ol' buddy, I'm with Steve........Once again you hit a home run.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 May 02 - 06:26 PM

Same here, my dear LeeJ.

Banj, ya done did good...you know this lot..off on tangents at the drop of a hat.

luvyakat


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 29 May 02 - 07:05 PM

Hey I figured it out! I know who the Peace Matriot is and why she is so pissy! Her last name is Smith - get it??

Peace Matriot Smith?

And Art - you have every right to your opinion - all of us do - and I believe it is due to our service to country. Whether it is in the lines as a soldier or in the lines as an activist to stop the craziness.

Love ya all,

Steve


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: SharonA
Date: 30 May 02 - 04:51 PM

This being the traditional Memorial Day, May 30th, the original question "how did YOU spend the first Memorial Day since 9/11/01" takes on new meaning, since there was a service held at Ground Zero in NYC today. My co-workers and I have a tiny black-and-white TV in the office, so we were able to watch the service and remember for a few moments not only those who died as victims of that terrible attack but also those who've fought and died in the war against terrorism since then. May their souls find peace.


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Subject: RE: Memorial Day, A Look Back
From: Murph10566
Date: 30 May 02 - 05:15 PM

AMEN.


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