memorial day remembrance

Anne Frank could be a 87-year-old woman living in Boston today. But was denied a US visa.

“As President Trump prepares orders to wall out Mexicans and shut out refugees from America, today marks one of the most hateful days in our nation’s history… Today the Statue of Liberty weeps over President Trump’s discrimination. President Trump is beyond the wrong side of history. He is driving our nation off a moral cliff. When President Trump uses national security as a guise for racism, he doesn’t strengthen our national security. He compromises our national security by engendering disrespect for America by people around the world. Make no mistake, suspending visas for citizens of Middle Eastern and African countries is not called national security. It’s called prejudice.

President Trump is now exacerbating the largest global refugee crisis in history. His slamming America’s doors on the starving, the wounded and the abused is a grotesque blot on our nation’s history of freedom. The President’s actions are an embarrassment to the timeless vision of America as inscribed by Emma Lazarus to “give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Demonizing refugees and immigrants, and spending billions of taxpayer dollars to keep them out of our nation, will go down in American history as one of the most tragic deviations from our national conscience.”

- Statement of Steven Goldstein, Executive Director of the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect

2

Today is ANZAC Day in Australia and New Zealand.

ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, and today serves as a national day of remembrance for our soldiers. You can read more about it here.

Thank you to all the Anzacs; the brave men and woman who have sacrificed so much for our countries, and still continue to do so. 

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.

Lest We Forget.

7

On Memorial Day 2017, I would like to celebrate by looking back at our very first fallen veterans. In the 1860s, Revolutionary War veterans were beginning to disappear for good. Wanting to capture their photographs one last time for history to remember, one photographer set out to photograph the very last survivors he could find alive. This tiny set of 7-8 pictures is all that we have left of this remarkable generation. Some of these men were there at the battles of Lexington and Concord, one was a drummer boy for General Washington himself, and others fought and suffered injuries for their service; all of this nearly 240 years ago! Please reblog to share these little seen photographs because I honestly think Americans need and deserve to see their history with their own eyes in order to even begin to comprehend how real it was.

3

BLM Arizona Employees Honor Fallen at Patriot Day Event 

Story and photos by Rachel Carnahan, BLM Tumblr blogger

On September 11, 2017, the BLM Arizona Strip District’s Employee Association hosted the first annual Patriot Day BBQ to reflect on one of the most significant events in our country’s recent history.

A “Memory Wall” was displayed in the breakroom during the BBQ which encouraged employees to share their stories and record where they were when they first received the news of the September 11 terror attack. The opportunity to share these experiences facilitated an open dialogue among employees as they reflected on the events of September 11, remembered and honored the fallen patriots who gave their lives in the service of others, and think on the freedoms and privileges we enjoy in the United States of America.

The “Memory Wall” reflected a wide variety of activities which BLM employees were engaged in when the tragedy occurred, illustrating the diversity and vast experience of the BLM’s workforce. Employees were engaged in everything from returning from guiding a commercial trip in the Grand Canyon, waiting to start first period in Junior High School, attending the fourth grade, starting Air Force pilot training in Oklahoma, graduating from Army Basic Training and being on fire assignment in Washington to hearing the first plane crash in Norristown, PA.

Employees enjoyed the camaraderie the activity provided and learned more about their coworkers, as well as the event itself, allowing the team to heal and grow together.

Dad

In almost unbearable heat

and stifling, heavy air 

I sat by the window

trying and failing 

to read a book

Without much thought

I picked up my phone to check

my FB page for yet another

bit of entertainment

to help distract myself 

from the humdrum routine

when something caught my eye

A video of yesteryear’s star

the legendary Dilip Kumar

I didn’t follow him then

nor do I do so now

But even so my eyes

welled up with tears

For I remembered my dad

who used to be an avid fan

My mind was haunted by

thoughts of how easily

people leave us in this life

and yet somehow remain

with us, in our memories

for as long as we live

Not always at the forefront

yet their presence echoes 

in so many of our thoughts

and the lightest trace 

of their remembrance

makes our paths cross

over and over again…..

3

One of the most breathtaking events I had the blessing to be apart of 🎇 // There are times beyond our control our loved ones are taken away from us. In remembrance of our heroes on Memorial Day, family and friends, I set a lantern into the ocean to commemorate my grandma, pledge kid KLa, and dear old friend Rode. This one’s for you guys ❤️ Sending my gratitude and love all the way from Hawaii. There’s no better way to wrap up this trip 🌺

Why I Remember: Holocaust Remembrance Day 2017

They say that if we had one moment of silence for every victim of the Holocaust, we would be silent for almost eleven and a half years - and that would only be the silence in remembrance of the Jewish victims of the Shoah. If we include the non-Jewish victims, the Poles, Germans, Russians, Gypsies, homosexuals, asocials, intelligentsia, mentally and physically disabled, and many others… We would be silent for more than twenty years.

A majority of these people had done nothing wrong, aside from being born in the wrong place at the wrong time. Most were not criminals, although the leaders of the Third Reich labeled them as such. They were regular people. Mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters, and sons. They were teachers, doctors, lawyers, bakers, homemakers, businessmen, and farmers. Yet they were swept up in the storm of Nazi Germany, without a clue of their fate until it was right in front of them. And we remember them by saying, “Never Again.”

To say “Never Again” regarding the Holocaust seems like a no-brainer. Of course we would not let a government persecute millions of people, forcing them into hard labor and inhumane conditions, let alone into gas chambers or in front of firing squads.

Today, a repeat of the Holocaust - or something like it, on that large of a scale - feels just about impossible. We have media - especially the social kind - to thank for that. I don’t know anyone who would sit by silently and livestream their neighbors being rounded up and put on trains to an unknown destination. Or at least I hope we wouldn’t. Maybe that is where I see the problem with saying, “Never Again.” We say it with such ease and hope, but is it really true? Did we mean “Never Again” when we watched Rwanda on TV?

Am I certain that my neighbors, coworkers, and classmates would stand up for me, if I was the next to be persecuted? Am I sure they would not allow me to be taken away and lost to the pages of history? Again, I hope so. I hope that we have come far enough and our world is filled with enough global citizens to not let something as atrocious and tragic as the Holocaust occur again. I would love nothing more to say I know that to be true. But how can I know that when a majority of newscasts focus on negativity, violence, and hatred? How can I trust that when there are people who wish bad things upon others, simply because they do not agree on something? As Martin Niemöller’s poem goes….

“First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Trade Unionist. 
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Jew. 
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Perhaps this is why I believe the messages of the Holocaust and its survivors are so important. While those men and women whose entire families were taken away from them would have every right to be bitter and spiteful, almost all of their memoirs or oral histories are filled with forgiveness, compassion, and - like Anne Frank wrote in her diary - a belief that people are still good. Eva Kor forgave Dr. Josef Mengele for his experiments on her and her twin sister, even though she didn’t have to. Some may say this is naive, because why should people who were by all accounts twisted and horrible be forgiven? Why should we believe that people are still good when they can commit such crimes against humanity?

Survivors of the Holocaust and their descendants remind us that there is more strength in forgiveness and compassion than in hatred and violence. Elie Wiesel tells us that the opposite of love is not hate, but indifference. To be a bystander is sometimes worse than being a perpetrator. To ignore the crime can be as bad as committing it. To be silent is unacceptable.

As I remember the Holocaust today, I remember not only the victims who perished, but those who went on to live and give a voice for those who were silenced by the terror of the Third Reich. We cannot have a moment of silence for every victim of the Holocaust, and perhaps we should not. Why? Because they would not want us to be silent. They would want us to speak and speak loudly for those who are unable to be heard themselves.

(Photo credit and author: Katrina Stack, B.A. History from University of Michigan-Dearborn, Social Media Manager at the Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive)

Today marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, a horrific center of terror during the Holocaust. On January 27, 1945– almost 12 years to the day of when the Nazi party rose to power in Germany– soldiers from the Soviet Union ended the pain and suffering for all of those who were not murdered or weakened from the elements, starvation and pain from the perpetrators.

In honor of this International Holocaust Remembrance Day, I am choosing to remember and honor our beloved who perished: 6,000,000 Jews; 3,300,000 Soviet Union Prisoners of War; 2,000,000 Poles; 300,000 Romani; 250,000 disabled individuals; 10,000 LGBTQ individuals; 4,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses. Can you imagine 11,000,000 people being wiped off the face of this earth in a short period of time?

Zichronam Livracha, may the memories of all who perished be for a blessing and their families have a renewal of spirit as we stand with them in honor of their loved ones.

On this day, I am also choosing to honor all of those who survived and the heroes who will go down in history because they saved others.

In the words of Elie Weisel, “A destruction only man can provoke, only man can prevent. Mankind must remember that peace is not God’s gift to his creatures, it is our gift to each other.”

What we remember

Victor Davis Hanson at The Wall Street Journal:

“The shared ordeal of the Civil War, with some 650,000 fatalities, would eventually demand a unified national day of remembrance. Memorial Day began as an effort to square the circle in honoring America’s dead—without privileging the victors or their cause. The approach of the summer holidays seemed the most appropriate moment to heal our civic wounds. The timing suggested renewal and continuity, whereas an autumn or winter date might add unduly to the grim lamentation of the day.

But could the distinctions so crucial to war itself really be suppressed? Consider the themes of the two greatest speeches in the history of Western oratory: Pericles’ long Funeral Oration for the Athenian dead of the first year of the Peloponnesian War, delivered in 431 B.C. and amounting to some 3,000 words in most translations; and nearly 2,300 years later, President Abraham Lincoln’s 272-word Gettysburg Address of 1863.

Both statesmen agree that the mere words of the present generation cannot do justice to the sacrifice of the fallen young. Lincoln sees the talking and the living as less authentic commemorators than the mute dead: “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.”

Pericles argues that even a notable such as himself has almost no right to assess the sacrifices of the dead: “I could have wished that the reputations of many brave men were not to be imperiled in the mouth of a single individual, to stand or fall according as he spoke well or ill.”

By their ultimate sacrifice—what Lincoln calls ‘the last full measure of devotion’—the mute war dead argue that even heroic men are less important than the eternal values of freedom and democracy that ‘shall not perish from the earth.’ Such chauvinism assumes that democracies are by nature superior to the alternatives. Thus to Pericles, Athens was the ‘school of Hellas’ and for Lincoln America was ‘a new nation, conceived in Liberty.’”

Holidays, Festivals, & other important days
  • (la) Navidad = Christmas
    navideño/a = Christmas (adj) / Christmastime
  • (la) Nochebuena = Christmas Eve
    (la) víspera de Navidad = Christmas Eve [lit. “Christmas vesper”]
  • (el) Día de los Reyes Magos = Three Kings’ Day
  • (el) Adviento = Advent
    (el) Advenimiento de Cristo = Advent
  • Hanukkah / Chanukah = Hanukkah
  • (la) Nochevieja = New Year’s Eve
  • (el) Año Nuevo = New Year’s Day
  • (el) Año Nuevo Chino = The Chinese New Year
  • (el Día de) San Valentín = Valentine’s Day
  • (el Día de) San Patricio = St. Patrick’s Day
  • Halloween = Halloween
  • (el) Día de los Muertos = Day of the Dead
  • (el) Día de Todos los Santos = All Soul’s Day
    (el) Día de los (Fieles) Difuntos = All Souls’ Day [lit. “day of the loyal/faithful deceased”]
  • (el) Día de Todos los Santos = All Saints’ Day
    Todos los Santos = All Saints’ Day
  • la Cuaresma = Lent
  • Mardi Gras = Mardi Gras / “Shrove Tuesday”
    Martes de Carnaval = Mardi Gras / Fat Tuesday / Carnevale 
  • (el) Miércoles de Ceniza = Ash Wednesday
    (el) Día de Ceniza = Ash Wednesday
  • (el) Jueves Santo = Holy Thursday / “Maundy Thursday”
  • (el) Viernes Santo = Good Friday
  • (el) Sábado Santo = Holy Saturday
    (el) Sábado de Gloria = Holy Saturday
  • (el) Domingo de Ramos = Palm Sunday
  • (la) Pascua = Easter
  • (la) Semana Santa = Holy Week / Easter [the week surrounding Easter Sunday]
  • (el) Día de Independencia = Independence Day
  • (el) Día de los (Veteranos) Caídos = Memorial Day [lit. “day of the fallen (veterans)”]
    (el) Día de Conmemoración de los Caídos = Memorial Day [lit. “Day of Remembrance of the Fallen”
  • (el) Día de Acción de Gracias = Thanksgiving
  • el cumpleaños = birthday
    el cumple = birthday (slang)
  • el bautismo = baptism / christening
  • la boda = wedding
  • el funeral = funeral
  • el entierro = burial
  • (el) Ramadán = Ramadan
  • (el) Yom Kippur = Yom Kippur
    (el) Día de Perdón = Yom Kippur [lit. “day of forgiveness”]
  • la estación = season
  • el mes = month
    mensual = monthly
  • el año = year
    anual = yearly / annual
  • la primavera = spring
    de primavera / primaveral = springtime
  • el otoño = autumn / fall
    de otoño / otoñal = autumnal / fall (adj)
  • el verano = summer
    de verano, veraniego/a = summery / summertime
  • el invierno = winter
    de invierno, invernal = winter(time), wintry
  • el equinoccio de primavera = spring equinox
  • el equinoccio de otoño = autumnal equinox
  • el solsticio de verano = summer solstice
  • el solsticio de invierno = winter solstice
  • las vacaciones = vacation / day off
    la feria = day off, holiday / “fair” or carnival
  • ir de vacaciones = to go on vacation/holiday
    veranear = to spend summer (somewhere) / “to summer”
  • el feriado = holiday
    feriado/a = a day that is a holiday, an “observed” holiday
    (el) día festivo, (el) feriado religioso = holy day, religious holiday
  • el puente = “bridge”
    [sometimes “long weekend” or “Bank Holiday”; a puente are the days off before or after a big holiday, so if Christmas falls on a Wednesday, you’d typically get the Tuesday off for Christmas Eve and probably the Monday off as your puente… not technically a holiday, but some places won’t make you come in to work that day; Black Friday (the Friday after Thanksgiving) in the U.S. is a puente as well, where you then have the weekend off and go back to work on Monday]

  • la fiesta = party / feast day, holy day, holiday
    las fiestas = parties / holidays (in this sense it more means observed holidays, so las fiestas de España means “the holidays/festivals of Spain” which can include national holidays or more regional holidays or what they call “popular holidays” like La Tomatina or something like that that’s unique to a city or region]

  • (el) día santo = saint’s day
    (el) día del santo patrón = saint’s day [lit. “day of a patron saint”]
  • celebrar = to celebrate
  • pasar = to spend (time), to observe a holiday
    pasarlo bien = to have a good time [can be pasarla bien if it’s specifically la fiesta or a feminine noun]
    disfrutar (de) / gozar (de) = to enjoy something
  • regalar, dar un regalo = to give a gift
  • el regalo = gift, present
  • ¡Feliz ___! = Happy ___!


*Note: With some exceptions, this list is mostly designed around the holidays observed in the U.S. and particularly Christian ones; other countries and religions have their own holidays that may or may not be included on this list so feel free to add any big ones I’ve missed.