What constitutes the bulwark of our own liberty and independence? It is not our frowning battlements, our bristling sea coasts, the guns of our war steamers, or the strength of our gallant and disciplined army. These are not our reliance against a resumption of tyranny in our fair land. All of them may be turned against our liberties, without making us stronger or weaker for the struggle. Our reliance is in the love of liberty which God has planted in our bosoms. Our defense is in the preservation of the spirit which prizes liberty as the heritage of all men, in all lands, every where. Destroy this spirit, and you have planted the seeds of despotism around your own doors.
I won’t say “Happy Memorial Day”, because too many people died serving our country in conflicts that were mostly unnecessary. I’d rather say, “Be respectful of veterans. They’ve put up with a lot of shit. Respect the dead, soldier and civilian alike who died at the hands of political elites and fearful publics.”