There are no Americans alive who lived during America’s most violent, brutal and deadly era. None remember the greatest cataclysm in American history that continues to define our nation in its present, and shape its future. Some say there is no racism in America, and that learning about the evils of slavery, oppression and racism threatens the future. They do a great disservice to the memories of the dead who fought an existential struggle to preserve the United States, abolish slavery and rebuild the meaning of freedom. There was no doubt about the cause for which they fought. The most popular ballad of the day, “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” made that clear. Julia Ward Howe wrote the lyrics at the Willard Hotel in Washington, DC.
There are many people in America who won't be reading this poignant post who should. I truly hope on this day those who are privileged to be citizens of this great Republic will pay more attention to it's preservation, and be more careful in whose hands they place the responsibility of guiding her.
Reading your words brought tears to my eyes. I want to share this far and wide. Beautifully written. Thank you.
Among the very best that you’ve written. Thanks.
I went to the American cemetery in Normandy in 2021, having secured a flight to France the day after Macron lifted the COVID travel ban. I’m not prone to tears, but that day I wept as I apologized to the fallen for their sacrifice. I apologized for the people who reaped the benefits of their courage & used it to bolster the demagogue who sat in the Oval Office just 6 months prior. I apologized for the people who made a mockery of their commitment to fight Nazis by elevating white supremacists. I was ashamed of my countrymen who embrace the twisted philosophy that all of those buried at that cemetery fought to eradicate. I couldn’t guess at how many of the fallen had direct descendants who figuratively spat on their sacrifice, but I knew the number was not zero. As we take some time today to remember and honor the fallen, spend a moment to apologize for those who will use this Memorial Day to undermine the freedoms these soldiers died for while using them as mere props for their fundraising.
Thank you, Steve. You have brought me to the meaning of Memorial Day like I have never felt it. As I wipe the tears from my eyes, once more, I want to say I have not been so moved on this day as I know most will celebrate with families and friends and I supposed that is just as fitting, but a moment of Thankfulness is okay as well. Perhaps there is room for both. Thank you for helping me remember whaty today is really about. God Bless!
The Battle Hymn of the Republic is such an uplifting song, played many times as we marched off to war. Taps which I have been unlucky enough to hear many times is on the other hand, so sad. It's a song of loss, a song of permanent loss. I would like to not hear that song again but know that wish will not be fulfilled in my lifetime.
Thank you- may we never forget
Incredible tribute to our country and those that defended it. I wish these days were treated with more reverence so that by looking back, we would do better moving forward.
No need to try and embellish .. I will share. Thank you for providing such a meaningful gift
Steve, this is beautiful. Thank you.
On this solemn day we stop to remember all those who lost their lives in the defense of our great nation. Please let us not forget all those we have lost to gun violence. All the children who will not graduate from grade school, middle school, high school and college. All the parents who will not see their children graduate or walk down the aisle because of gun insanity. Our country deserves better than thoughts and prayers from our Republican leaders in Washington. Lives lost to senseless gun violence, especially children are more tragic than lives lost in defense of our country. The men and women who lost their lives in service are thought of as heroes and deserve the honor. The innocent lives lost to gun violence should be remembered but not as sacrificial lambs on the alters of the NRA lobbyists and gun manufacturers. Give thoughts and prayers to the families of our honored dead. However, stand up and be counted against the gun violence. Raise your voices so every Republican in Congress hears our plea to ban assult weapons and high capacity magazines. It is time to heal the nation and bind up the self inflicted wounds of gun violence. So on this day let us not only remember our heroes but all the innocent lives lost.
Tears came in my eyes reading this. Thank you.
Thank you Steve, it’s a beautiful piece and a reminder of the sacrifices that have been made by so many to keep our nation free. It’s especially meaningful to me today; my son has just enlisted in the Army and is is basic training at Fort Moore (formerly Ft Benning).
Steve Schmidt, you are the best, your grasp gathers in all of it... perhaps you should run for high office... and speak for us all, Sandy