Saturday, November 11, 2006

Veterans Day

I blush to admit that I did not realize that today was Veterans Day until I noticed that the alternate side of the street parking rules were suspended yesterday. Technically today is Veterans Day but yesterday was Veterans Day "observed". That's when we take a legitimate holiday and turn it into a three day weekend--although I don't know anyone who actually had the day off yesterday. Oh, well. At least we didn't have to move our cars which seems to me a sad way to celebrate our Veterans who have so bravely served our country over the years.

Come to think of it, even holidays like Memorial Day and Labor Day have lost all their meaning other than being an excuse for a weekend getaway, family barbecues and once earmarking when one could and could not wear white.

Anyway, in case you were wondering about the origins of Veterans Day or how it was meant to be commemorated, here's a little history on the subject:

The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:

Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and

Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and

Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.

So, get out there and hang a flag and commemorate the day with thanksgiving, prayer and exercises. In fact I think I'll head to the gym now.

In honor of Veterans Day I thougth I'd include a photo of my friendly neighborhood war memorial: The Soldiers and Sailors Monument, NYC.



At 5:29 PM, Blogger kevin said...

Hi Michael,
We have partly celebrated Remembrance Day (called veterans Day with you) but our main day is 26th April for commemorating this. 11th November is just like any other day here but 26th April is the day when all shops close until 1pm and it is a public holiday. Many shops are not happy about closing in the mornings because they miss out on holiday trade..pretty sad!

I hope you had a constructive time at the gym.

Kevin in New Zealand.


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