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Why Memorial Day Matters to a Millennial

memorial day

This summer my son Joseph is living and working in Washington D.C.   We are fortunate to have a relative living nearby where he can stay.  He spent this weekend touring Arlington National Cemetery and took these photos.  He also posted on his Facebook page why as a millennial he cares about Memorial Day.

Memorial Day Matters

Here is what Joseph wrote:

One of the perks of being in D.C. was being able to visit Arlington National Cemetery this Memorial Day weekend. Those who know me well might be confused why a passionate pacifist would visit, but I think Memorial Day and Arlington Cemetery serve as perhaps the best reminders why this weekend should be a sobering time to reflect where we’ve been desensitized to tragedy.
We cannot let violence, militarism, and war be normalized. What Memorial Day asks is that we respect the seriousness of something like war enough to come to grips with its destructive power and steep price.
But don’t take it from me, take it from former Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a WWII five-star General, who understood fully well what it meant to serve:
Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children…
This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron…
It calls upon [us] to answer the question that stirs the hearts of all sane men: Is there no other way the world may live?”
— Dwight D. Eisenhower in his “Chance For Peace” speech
Memorial Day

Our Future Hope

Joseph and many young people like him are our future hope.  He cares deeply about God’s heart for justice demonstrated through shalom.  As Dr. King said, “True peace is not merely the absence of tension but the presence of justice.”  They are our future hope.
Justice matters to God and it should matter to us.  Our brave men and women died so we might realize our dream of liberty and justice for all.  That dream is far from realized, but it is worth fighting for in every generation.
Join us in expanding access to justice for all.  One great way to start is by attending our Restore conference next weekend at Judson University on Friday, June 7 and Saturday, June 8.  One day pricing is available.  Friday is Joseph’s birthday.  He and his brother Daniel will be 20.  While Joseph is in D.C., Daniel will be here.  Join a millennial in caring about justice.  Receive practical tools, insights, inspiration and meet others as we seek justice together.
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