Memorial Day

I could never figure out why America had, basically, two Remembrance Days. (In Australia and elsewhere we call Veteran's Day "Remembrance Day" because on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the war ended.)

Then I found out this year that Memorial Day began as a Civil War holiday. Presumably not just to remember the fallen, but to remember that a nation had been torn apart and that it should Never Happen Again.

Wikipedia has a whole bunch on it, and my presumably doesn't seem to figure into it. It was a day to decorate the graves of Union soldiers. Only later were Confederate soldiers similarly honored.

Australia also has two Remembrance Days. Our other one is April 25, ANZAC Day, where we remember a defeat during WWI that lost scads of lives. Of the two ANZAC is the bigger celebration: dawn services, street marches, beer, and the one day in the year you can play a certain gambling game legally ("Two-Up")

So -- which one means more to Americans? Memorial or Veteran's Day?


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