Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day: A Sad Day But We Will Persevere

And a Happy Memorial Day to you all.  But let me say this first--I know that it must suck in a lot of Americans' lives right now.  Well, you have the ailing economy, that's a given.  Then you had these devastating tornadoes in Alabama & Missouri, flooding in Louisiana and wildfires in Texas.  I lucked out cause I didn't lose anything.  I wasn't in the flood zone.  I didn't lose anything valuable in Hurricane Katrina.

EDIT: If you don't know, here's footage of tornadoes in Alabama and in Missouri.

If there's one good story out of this tornado business, it's that a puppy from Alabama survived two broken legs and crawled home after he survived direct contact with a tornado--see here.  I think animals are more resilient than we give credit for.

Like I said before, it's just hard to watch the news or surf the internet without being bombarded with thousands of negative and/or confusing news pieces that just serve to make my normal everyday life more tumultuous.

I know that video games are practically useless in the broad spectrum of things, but I suppose it wouldn't hurt to talk about happy games that lift your spirits.  That's the very least I could do.

Please pray for the friends and families of victims in these natural disasters.  Donate and reach out if you can.  I personally don't know anyone affected by these disasters but maybe you do.

And not to diminish the work that our brave soldiers have done, this is Memorial Day so to have men & women risk death so that you can get up, play video games, and go about your daily business deserves tremendous praise.  Some men die and that is the business of war.  I only wish that I could shake their hands beyond the grave.

Here's to the United States of America who, through all the garbage we have to put up with, is still hanging in there.

November 19, 1863: Abraham Lincoln was to give a "few appropriate remarks" at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania where 172,000 American soldiers perished.  This was in memorial of men from the North and the South.  His speech followed a two-hour dialogue by one of the greatest orators of the time, Edward Everett.  Lincoln's speech, in contrast, only lasted a few minutes:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. 

Lincoln thought the speech was a failure, but Everett wrote Lincoln the following day, "I should be glad, if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes."

Abraham Lincoln.

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