Monday, May 25, 2015

Fifteen Days in May

This year, there are fifteen days separating Mother's Day and Memorial Day.

Aside from those fifteen days, what is the connection between the two?  The connection is war.

Mother's day was originally established in 1872 as "Mother's Day of Peace".  It was a day of peace for those mothers who had lost sons to war or were concerned that they would one day lose sons to war.  In the early part of the last century, the peace/war aspects of the holiday were replaced with greeting cards.

The traditions of decorating graves to memorialize those lost in the Civil War started while the war was still ongoing.  The holiday was formalized in Charleston, SC when a mass grave of union soldiers was cleaned up and "decorated" by (mostly black) locals.  Like Mother's day, it has either evolved or devolved, depending on how you look at it.  It's mostly now just a day off, although it's really not a big greeting card day.

Fifteen days separate the hope that one day we can stop war, from the remembrance of those who died in either forming (or ostensibly forming) or defending (or ostensibly defending) our American Empire. 

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