November 12, 2011

Armistice Day 2011

Posted by meli on Saturday, November 12, 2011 in , , | 1 comment
A holiday in our name is indeed an honor, as was our service itself, but “Armistice” somehow still sounds more suitable. That word refers to the end of a conflict, the end of the killing, the maiming, the destruction, the inhumanity, the erosion of civilized personal behaviors that have taken centuries to mold. While “Armistice” does not connote lasting peace, at least it does connote a chance for societies to grasp hold of themselves and, if able, to pull back from the abyss. ~Veterans For Peace

We went to our first Veterans For Peace gathering this evening. 
Couldn't have picked a better day to be part of such an amazing organization.

Today the vast majority of our country celebrates Veterans. Glorifying their duty and supporting their missions. "Thank you for your service" is even more common then "Good Morning" today. Midnight madness sales and retailers offering discounts to active duty (and sometimes retired vets) are practically a religion on this day. All the while the original intent of this day has been sorely lost along the way.  

Peace. A declaration at the end of the "war to end all wars"; Armistice day was meant to honor lives lost and opportunities gained for peace. The right to use war as an instrument of national policy was being fought; peace and justice promoted. The amount of people killed, wounded, and taken hostage in that war was astounding to the American people. Congress responded to a universal hope that such a war would never happen again by passing a resolution calling for “exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding...” Later, Congress added that November 11 was to be “a day dedicated to the cause of world peace.”

  • U.S. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed Armistice Day for November 11, 1919. In proclaiming the holiday, he said...
  • "To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations."
  • The United States Congress passed a concurrent resolution seven years later on June 4, 1926, requesting that President Calvin Coolidge issue another proclamation to observe November 11 with appropriate ceremonies. A Congressional Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U.S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday: "a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as 'Armistice Day'."

We've strayed far, far away from what this holiday was meant to promote. In 1954 the word Armistice was replaced with the word Veteran; and it's been known as Veterans Day ever since. 

Now before you accuse me of being an unpatriotic biotech,
or a sorry excuse for a military wife (ex) ...
I think that honoring our countries veterans is a good thing, an important thing; I believe getting back to the roots of this day: Promoting peace. Abolishing the use of war as an instrument of national policy. Signing into law and making it illegal to profit from war. I believe these things honor and celebrate our nations Veterans a thousand fold over. Glorifying war and service the way our country as a whole does on 'Veterans Day' does not.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, this was deep and very well understood. I always said a prayer on "Veteran's Day" for our soliders and never really understood the depth of it all,until my family went through it and I read this blog. I kinda like the word Armistice. I am SO proud of you Meli and Nick for hangin tough throu it all.
    <3 Mom :)