Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and
Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and
Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.
With this resolution, the United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I on June 4, 1926. Thus was born Veterans Day. The original concept was a day observed with Parades, Public Meetings and a brief suspension of business starting at 11:00 am.
Why 11:00 am? Well World War I- “The Great War” – officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting stopped a good seven months earlier when an armistice between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.” So 11:00 am.
Not many businesses cease business and those that do are considered an inconvenience. Folks do not give much importance to Veterans Day anymore. Totally sad to me. It is those that have served and military families who seem to be the ones who understand the price paid. Veterans Day honors those who have served, who are serving and those who will serve.
During World War I, approximately 116,708 military men and women died, with 205,690 wounded (The official figures of military war deaths listed by the US Dept. of Defense for the period ending Dec. 31, 1918). World War II 291,557 soldiers died. Just those two Wars alone should give you an idea of the price that has been paid.
Whether you agree with Wars or not, or the political reasons behind them all the fact remains that Men and women fought and died for their country. For Us. For you . For me. That men and women have gone forth and risked their lives so that I may remain free. So that I can go ahead and talk crap about my country and its leaders without getting shot or thrown in jail to rot. That I can gather with like-minded folks and yell at others who don’t agree with me. You know,uphold and defend my Constitutional Rights.
It is that which we should celebrate, that which we should remember and honor. Those men and women who fought, some were wounded some paid the ultimate price. SO I ask that you spend a moment today and remember them. No matter what your political, religious or personal views are, that you reserve those for another day. That today, for just one day, set it all aside and remember why we have this day. Thank a Veteran, thank a soldier for having done and doing what many don’t, can’t or won’t do.
“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…” ~ Woodrow Wilson
(Editors note: The number of dead and wounded does not apply to those readers from the UK or Canada who celebrate Remembrance Day BUT the sentiments certainly do.)