Friday, May 25, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend: A day when the occasional patriot runs for the sales event.

Its Memorial Day weekend, a weekend of remembrance to those who have served & serve in our military to protect our liberty & freedom, yet very few will actually do such a thing because they are too busy taking advantage of some sales event.

Why must every US holiday be commercialized, are we that Pavlovan to a Holiday sale?
I have a soft spot for our military, both retired and present. Maybe it was because I have had many family members serve in one form or other over many decades, but when it comes to days such as Pearl Harbor Day or Memorial Day, well they are sacred in my mind.

A quick history of Memorial Day, once called Decoration Day, can be traced back to May 5, 1868 and Major General John Logan, however it took 103 years till Congress declared the last Monday in May to be declared a national holiday.

We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. ... Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.” - Major General John Logan

Incredible words yet many Americans will celebrate buy running to a car dealership or to hardware stores or department stores for sales events that mark the beginning of summer. Some may stop for a moment of silence, but that’s usually followed by “Gentlemen start your engines.”

So consumerism is the best way to celebrate those that have served to protect our nation, how about instead of spending money, donate that money to one of the many Veteran Organizations around our country. If you see a serviceman/woman, offer to buy them a drink, or simply thank them for their volunteered service.

It’s rather obnoxious when we celebrate such history knowing that if one spends $55 or more they can save 15% on the sale. Now that is Vulture Consumerism.

Just look at some of sales events by the major chains: Macy’s save 15%-20%, Cabella’s 20%-50%, and don’t forget the Victoria Secret 7/$26 on Pick Panty sale!

Not to mention that Memorial Day accounts for 15%-20% of total yearly auto sales. So go on down to Billy Bob Jimmy Jack’s Chevy dealer were a Salesman dressed as Uncle Sam just might tell you that your credit is just good enough to buy that overpriced/outdated Chevy Impala.

Then of course gas prices normally rise on Memorial Day weekend for the summer travel season. It was only a few months ago, the so called experts and Media were telling us we would be paying roughly $5/gallon, yet the over the past few weeks gas prices have dropped to an average $3.65/gallon.

Now I do need to mention that there are companies offering many deals and freebies to our Military, which to me is the correct path to follow.

Places from Tanger Outlets offering gift cards to Hooters Restaurants offering free meal deals to roughly over 1,600 Museums across the country offering free admission and Caribou Coffee’s buy one get one free.

Of course this is also the weekend that everyone feels patriotic and replaces their Seasonal Butterfly flags to fly Old Glory, only to re-hang the Butterfly flag again come Tuesday morning.

What does it feel like to be occasionally patriotic?

So as you plant that discounted Samurai Toad Lilly from Lowe’s or chow down on a Hot Dog at Bob Jones Ford waiting for credit approval, think about the soldier in Afghanistan or patrolling the DMZ in South Korea as to why you are fortunate enough to be doing so.

So this weekend, I raise my glass to all the men and women that have valiantly protected our nation over the years and say “thank you for volunteering your life to protect ours” as they are the American Idols we should giving our time too.

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