On May 31, the United States celebrates Memorial Day for the 153rd time.
May 31 – the last Monday in May is Memorial Day in the United States. On this day, Americans pay tribute to the memory of the American military who fell in the armed conflicts in which the United States participated.
Today, US President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and her husband, as well as the leaders of the armed forces of the country, laid wreaths at the Grave of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.
Addressing the participants of the memorial ceremony, President Biden recalled the fundamental human right, the right of memory.
The President called on his fellow citizens to remember the self-sacrifice and valor of those who gave their lives for the country.
This country – the United States of America – Biden called the greatest experiment that human history knows.
The President noted that American democracy is “imperfect” and called for further work to realize the full potential of this experiment.
At the same time, he stressed that the history of the United States is not only the past.
The head of the White House recalled the American military who died in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Speaking about the victims, he stressed that they gave their lives for honor and morality.
“Democracy is the soul of America,” the president said.
“Democracy is more than a form of government; it is a way of existence and a way of looking at the world. Democracy means the rule of the people,” Biden said.
“There is a struggle for democracy all over the world, a struggle between democracy and autocracy,” he added.
The Americans who fell in Normandy and Korea, Vietnam and Afghanistan, died on the battlefields of the centuries-long battle between freedom and autocracy, he said.
The President noted that the struggle for civil equality does not stop even today. Addressing the challenges facing today’s generation of Americans, he called for greater openness and inclusivity.
With many states currently working to pass laws to tighten voting rules in elections, Biden also stressed the need to ensure that citizens have the right to vote “freely, fairly, and conveniently,” and to apply the rule of law “equally and fairly to every citizen, regardless of where they come from or what they look like.”
Several US cities are associated with the birth of the Memorial Day tradition. It is assumed that the first event in memory of the fallen servicemen took place a few years after the end of the Civil War in 1865. In rural areas of the country, families often commemorated the fallen soldiers at the end of the summer. For a long time, Memorial Day was celebrated on May 30, but in 1971, when it was declared a national holiday, the date of its celebration was moved to the last Monday in May.