George, I'm very sorry to hear of your loss.
Dave, We can all honor those who came before us by simply remembering and acknowledging their sacrifices.
Over time we have come to take for granted the immense freedoms enjoyed by virtue of our American heritage. The long road to freedom and independence that marked the years leading to July 4, 1776, were conspicuous with the blood and sacrifice of those who fought for its realization. As we celebrate this Fourth of July we should remember those sacrifices as well as the countless others that have subsequently affirmed our liberties. As John Adams reflected in a letter to his wife Abigail, “I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will triumph in that Days Transaction.”
The wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns is one of the most moving rituals of honor and remembrance in our nation. It is not simply a matter of proper protocol for the President of the United States to participate in such a ceremony on Memorial Day, but rather it should be viewed as the distinct honor and obligation of the Commander in Chief to mark this day of national remembrance through his presence at our nation's most hallowed ground; Arlington National Cemetery.
I have to laugh at your description of a "two-party system" consisting of the Democrats vs. Greens. Living in SF I can attest to the accuracy of your comments. When Cindy Sheehan (endorsed by the Green Party) received more attention and nearly double the votes of her Republican counterpart in their bid to oust Nancy Pelosi from congress you can only sit back and marvel at what passes for political diversity in some parts of the country.
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