Memorial Day

Memorial Day - It's not just a 3 day weekend and a chance to barbecue with friends. The flags in this picture represent all the people from Massachusetts who've died in American wars. The display is on the Boston Common. It's truly a daunting number, and that's just from one small state. Imagine Texans represented like this. Of course, you can't see them all either in the photo. The flags stretch away on both sides. Volunteers plant all these flags. Pretty impressive.

Here's a sobering chart:
I had no idea that only 25,000 men died in the Revolutionary War (which is not a small number if you were one of them). But there weren't that many people in the colonies back then. I think I knew the Civil War had the greatest number of casualties. Imagine winning independence from Britain with 25,000 deaths and then killing over 600,000 less than a century later to keep the country intact. War is not only awful, but strange.

The Philippine-American War lasted for 14 years?!? Does anyone know what we were fighting for?

However, whatever you think about war, I believe we have to honor those that did their duty in one cause or another. I doubt they all wanted to be there (if any of them did) and yet they did it.

Please spare a thought or a prayer for those who are still in harm's way. It seems the demand for sacrifice will never end.

I don't want to be too maudlin, so here's a different view of the same garden that has all the flags.
Last, but not least, here is my favorite charity to help all military folks:


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