Memorial Day 阵亡将士纪念日

阵亡将士纪念日是一个真正的爱国假日,这个阵亡将士纪念日是在5月30日,但在5月最后的一个星期一来庆祝。这是为了纪念在美国军队服役期间牺牲之战士的一天。它包括各军种中的每个人。在早些时候,这个假期被称为纪念日。这个假日也是夏季开始的标志。

这个假日在美国内战(1861-1865)之后逐渐形成。在这场战争中大约有50万美国人死亡,比其他任何美国战争都多。根据传统,美国联邦国家的一些女性(CAS,离开联盟的南部各州)选择5月30日装饰内战士兵的坟墓以示纪念。他们装饰了联盟和南方士兵的坟墓。与1868年相比,约翰·A·洛根将军宣布5月30日是纪念在战争中阵亡的联合士兵的特殊日子。洛根是联盟内战退伍军人组织的共和国大军的总司令。他们选择了“阵亡将士纪念日”作为节日的名字。许多北方州也举行了多年类似的庆祝活动。

阵亡将士纪念日的活动后来转交给美国军团。该军团在第一次世界大战后于1919年在巴黎开始。它是美国最大的退伍军人组织,拥有超过300万名成员。其主要目的是帮助退伍军人。

为了为退伍军人募集资金,军团成员开始出售名为“罂粟花”的小红花。人们买了他们穿在他们的衣服上,并记住那些在战争中死去的人。这个想法来自欧洲。战争结束后,罂粟花在法国的许多战场上成长,展现了生命与和平的回归。

因此,人们在阵亡将士纪念日前一周称为“罂粟周”。他们还把罂粟放在士兵的坟墓上。销售罂粟所赚的钱帮助了在战争中受伤的退伍军人。今天罂粟并不普遍,因为大部分的世界大战退伍军人已经死亡,人们忘记了花的意义。今天退伍军人组织以其他方式筹集资金。

1971年国会制定了一项使阵亡将士纪念日成为国定假日的法律。它在美国五月的最后一个星期一举行庆祝,又一个为期三天的周末。它首先纪念在内战,西美战争(1898),第一次世界大战(1917-1918)和第二次世界大战(1941-1945),朝鲜战争(1950-1953)中死亡的人。它现在包括那些在越南战争(1961-1974)和波斯湾战争(1991)中死亡的人。

阵亡将士纪念日的庆祝活动包括游行和特别节目以及演讲,阅读亚伯拉罕林肯的“葛底斯堡演说”(对于那些在内战葛底斯堡,内战中死亡的人而言的短暂而着名的演讲),祈祷和沉默片刻。有海军基地的沿海城市通常为海上遇难的水手提供服务。它们与荣誉士兵相似。人们把放有鲜花的小型模型船放在水上来纪念那些海上遇难者。美国人也参加野餐和棒球比赛,观光或划船,也参加各种户外运动,在户外享受野餐,以及几乎任何其他有趣的活动。那些在军队中死去的战士是为了保护美国人民的自由。阵亡将士纪念日就是 纪念那些为国家献身的人们。


讨论问题:

  1. 美国的阵亡将士纪念日是在什么时候?人们又是在什么时候庆祝的?

  2. 在您的国家里是否也有类似美国阵亡将士纪念日的节日?如果有的话,与美国的阵亡将士纪念日有什么区别吗?

  3. 您要怎样来过阵亡将士纪念日?

  4. 在这一课里您学到什么新的内容吗?

Memorial Day is a truly patriotic holiday that occurs on May 30th, but is celebrated on the last Monday in May. It is a day to remember and honor those who died while they served in the American armed forces. It includes everyone in the military. Earlier this holiday was called Decoration Day. this holiday also is the sign of the beginning of summer.

This holiday had a slow beginning after the American Civil War (1861-1865). About 500,000 Americans died in that war, more than in any other US war. According to tradition, some women of the Confederate States of America (CAS, the southern states that left the Union) chose May 30th to decorate the graves of Civil War soldiers. They decorated the graves of both Union and Confederate soldiers. Than in 1868 General John A. Logan declared May 30th to be a special day to honor those Union soldiers who died in the war. Logan was Commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of the Union’s Civil War veterans. They chose “Memorial Day” as the name of the holiday. Many northern states held similar celebrations of years.

Responsibilities of Memorial Day activities later passed to the American Legion. The Legion began in Paris in 1919 after World War I. It is the largest American veteran organization, with over 3 million members. Its main purpose is helping veterans.

To raise money for veterans, Legion members began selling little, red flowers called “poppies”. People bought them to wear on their clothes and to remember those who died in war. The idea came from Europe. After the war, poppies grew over many battlefields in France, showing the return of life and peace.

As a result, people called the week before Memorial Day, “Poppy Week”. They also put poppies on the graves of soldiers. The money earned from selling poppies helped veterans who were wounded in the war. Poppies are not as common today since most of the World War veterans have died and people forgot the meaning of the flowers. Today veterans’ organizations raise money in other ways.

In 1971 Congress created a law that made Memorial Day a national holiday. It is celebrated on the last Monday of May all across the US, making another three-day weekend. It first honored those who died in the Civil War, Spanish-American War (1898), World Wars I (1917-1918) and II (1941-1945), the Korean War (1950-1953). It now includes these who died in the Vietnam War (1961-1974) and the Persian Gulf War (1991).

Memorial Day celebrations include parades and special programs with speeches, the reading of Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” (a short but famous speech for those who died as the battle at ?Gettysburg, PA in the Civil War), prayers and moments of silence. Coastal cities with a naval base often have services for sailors who died at sea. They are similar to those that honor soldiers. People will put on the water small model ships that have flowers on them. They are a memorial for those who died at sea. Americans also attend picnics and baseball games , to sightseeing or boating, play sports, cook meals outdoors, and almost any other kind of fun activity. Those who died in the military did so to protect the freedoms Americans have. Memorial Day remembers those who died for their nation..


Discussion Question:

  1. When is American Memorial Day? When do people celebrate it?

  2. Do you have a similar holiday just like American Memorial Day in your country? If so, is there any difference between those two?

  3. How do you want to your Memorial Day?

  4. Do you learn something new from this lesson?