The Moral Urgency of Memorial Day

June 2, 2023

RFI President Eric Patterson wrote an op-ed published this week in WORLD titled “The Moral Urgency of Memorial Day,” reflecting on how the rising generation must be taught the meaning of this important day of remembrance. Patterson writes:

Today is Memorial Day, the day when we remember military personnel who lost their lives while defending our country.

Memorial Day is about the real cost of war, and wars have both shaped our history and secured our freedoms. Some of today’s parents, however, have concerns about talking with children about war, particularly in an era of lawless violence graphically reported on television news. Combine that with the strangely casual attitude our society has toward digitized killing in video games. Should we talk about war and military service with our children? The answer is “yes” and Memorial Day is a valuable place to start.

Memorial Day helps us rightly frame and honor those who have served us in harm’s way. It is important that we model for our children the right nomenclature for our warriors. Some people are called and uniquely equipped for public service in the armed forces. Thus our military personnel are “guardians,” “defenders,” and “protectors.” The same holds true for law enforcement. We should not mock our warriors as ‘jarheads’ nor demean our police with pejorative labels. We are talking about people who daily put themselves at risk, and on Memorial Day we are specifically honoring those who died protecting and defending something. That “something” is our lives, our livelihoods, and our way of life in America. We should make sure our children know this truth.

Read the full article: “The Moral Urgency of Memorial Day.”