Memorial Day 2020

Memorial Day 2020

Monday is our national day of mourning. It is not a patriotic, political or recreational occasion. It is more important than that. It was invented as a commemoration rather than a celebration.

It used to be called Decoration Day. It was a day when women from the North and the South decorated the graves of their lost loves with poseys. It was a day for reflection. It was always sacred like the Sabbath. It became a way to stitch a riven nation back together again. As early as the spring of 1864, the year after Gettysburg, there are reports of Confederate widows decorating the graves of Union soldiers. In 1966, a Union General ordered the decoration of Confederate graves. We became a new nation through our shared sorrow.

Little towns in Massachusetts and Mississippi tragically discovered what they had in common. It was never merely widows, fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, comrades and old friends who grieved. Unexpected death is much more than that.

Thomas Edward Lawrence, the diminutive archaeologist, war hero and diplomat who died at 46 in a motorcycle accident, wrote “An individual death, like a pebble dropped in water, might make but a brief hole; yet rings of sorrow widened out there from.” Every single death disturbs many lives. Most people used to know that without being told.

No one ever wrote that the 379 deaths in Cuba was a small price to pay for Guantanamo Bay or that the 4,234 soldiers who died in the Philippine Insurrection were a small price to pay for Subic Bay. Or, that not losing face in Southeast Asia was well worth 58,220 dead Americans. Or, that 116,516 deaths were a more than fair price to pay for victory over Germany in 1918. No one would have dared.

Until now.

It is a bright, warm morning in Los Angeles and I am distracted by all that beckons me – the weekend: The dog eager to play, the beach, the tomato plants, the liquor I plan to drink, the ride I would like to take, the friends I will not see. It takes only seconds to look and see that this morning, at 11 a.m. Pacific Time on May 22, 2020, 95,213 people have died in the last 84 days. There should be 100,000 deaths by Monday.

Like most people who might read this, I didn’t know any of them. But, Monday is our national day of mourning.

Enjoy your dog, your beach, your ride, your garden, your drink, your friends and your barbecue.



35 Responses to “Memorial Day 2020”

  1. gordo Says:

    Anniversary of Dday yesterday

    Vietnam during the 60’s

  2. willienelso3 Says:

    Dear Rebel,

    It’s been a while since I last came here to read. The recent Memorial Day brought me here. I wanted to feast on whatever words you may have put down this year about the holiday. I was not disappointed. Over the years, some of the most moving and nourishing words you have “penned” have been sparked by this day and other holidays, particularly Veterans Day. This year’s article delivered a lot in a few words. Well done sir. Thank you. I’m glad you’re still working here. You have my respect.

    Be well, stay strong,


  3. oldskewl Says:

    growlingfart: your mouth sticks from the shit you spew you fucking loser. Put down the fucking remote and turn off SOA or whatever it is you watch. You wouldn’t know a real patch if one was talking to you.

    Utter bullshit from a dissident of nothing more than an ant.

  4. Frank Says:

    At this time of reflection and commemoration it struck me that Paladin is an idiot.

  5. rookery Says:

    Dear growlingfhardt

    Are you sure your not ‘straight shooter’ emerged from under his foil blanket..? At least he supplies links to madmen or fake news the rest of us can laugh at, and he believes that shit so he has a excuse…but you…Thinks charitably , this is a memorial day thread, so maybe no insults….. Jesus wept ‘Deep state and the 81.!? Quest TV..? The CIA..?….100 bucks to the charity of your choice if you back up that drivel with quotes or a link….

  6. Psycho Says:

    Rebel, thank you for writing this. I recently read an article that found 47% of Americans have no idea what Memorial Day is or about. Many of us have friends and family laying under those stones, and I will do my part to make sure my kids understand. Whether it’s friends I made in the Marine Corps who didn’t come home, or my brothers who went out because those old demons got to them, due to habits instilled in the military. Let us never forget.
    DocB, your in my prayers brother, see you in Vegas.

  7. jrino Says:

    Went to the Danny Dietz memorial statute Like I did last year. He was just a kid, in my opinion but He loved his buds, He was a real man & died for all of our freedom. Fuck Bin Laden, and the Arabs. Danny died too young. God bless him!

  8. DocB Says:

    Thanks for the article Rebel. I have brothers, uncles and now my wife buried amid those simple white stones.

  9. Old & Jaded Says:

    Respect and condolences to all who mourn today and endless gratitude to those who have served this country – past and present.

    Our parents were sure right about not bringing up certain subjects outside the family (religion, politics, money etc) weren’t they? Praying for the day when we return to some semblance of privacy, civil disagreement, news that just covers facts (versus adding a political slant) and social media that’s far more polite than we often see now. Well, I can dream…

  10. Gandalf Says:

    Great write Rebel! Respect to our Veterans. TY Even I know not to bring the politics (or division) into Memorial Day. “United we stand, Divided we fall” God Bless America.

  11. growlingfhardt Says:

    Thanks Rebel for giving us the Truth, about Decoration Day (and everything else). Here’s my 10 cents on subjects (Fed inflation you know), as I’m too old not to speak my mind. It’s not just the dead we mourn today, it’s also the maimed by war; both military and civilian, as the ‘cost of war’ is not just ‘the dead’, the repercussions go far deeper and for longer. Conflict grudges can last for centuries, and the pain keeps on. In other news, Quest tv yesterday showed “Hell on Two Wheels” a semi-historical look at the Hells Angels. You, DCD, were given a ‘partial spoken sentence’, whereas Droban, Dobans, and others (I forget names right now) had multiple and recurring comments on the 81’s. I caught part of it in changing channels. Anyway, what stood out was how ‘confused and bewildered’ the show was about how the HA’s were so organized (and profitable) as to be able to “take on the Government in Court” regarding certain matters. Well, hell, no surprise there, the Hells Angeles are ‘connected at the hip’ to the rogue elements in the CIA, or aka the Criminal Deep State. If you’re going to have a ‘vertical monopoly’ in the drug trade, you must have ‘source’ and ‘distribution’. CIA went into the ‘drug business’ during Vietnam (and maybe earlier), they then needed ‘distribution’ as they now had ‘source’. The Hells Angeles were ‘taken over’ for the purposes of ‘distribution’, sometime in the 1970’s I suspect. That’s why before the ‘take over’ the HA’s were a ‘bikes, brotherhood, booze and babes’ camaraderieship, and afterward (to the show’s great surprise) a “well-oiled and profitable world-wide ‘syndicate’, with now over a hundred Charters”. 81 is still ‘distributing’ for the Criminal Deep State, but the CDS may be looking for new ‘distributors’. And I hope Trump, in taking on the Criminal Deep State these days, understands this tidbit about the CDS octopus, and can restore the ‘honor’ that MC’s everywhere deserve and are entitled.

  12. Vince Says:

    Once again, very well written. Your words humble me. It reminds me of being deployed on a gator freighter and seeing the night sky for the first time on the Atlantic.

  13. SIG 45 Says:

    Paladin if you won’t recognize that Fox is to the right what MSNBC is to the left then you are lost. Don’t miss the main point of my post. Regardless of 75000 or 105000 dead many veterans were among them. Your dedication to conservative bullshit on a national holiday does not stop me from remembering those we lost. At least for this day drop the urge to make everything about Trump and the idiot right. Just for one day man. Try it.

  14. Shovelhead Says:

    I hear ya, and now understand where you’re coming from. I’m a Mainer, have nothing to do with the states below me. Although I’m about fucking tired of this Bitch Governor we have. Just another Power hungry Politician who thinks she can tell me what to do.

    Makes me sick to see Confederate statues, flags etc. torn down by Pinko Commies as Archie Bunker would say. Trying to erase the History of those brave Men & Women who fought and died for what they believed in.

    Whites who care more about Black Power than Blacks. Americans who bow down and let Cops & Feds violate their rights under the 1st, 2nd and 4th amendments. Is the Constitution even taught in school anymore? Knowledge is Power!!
    I could go on and on, but I don’t need to. I do see the pattern, I refuse to obey Societies rules.

  15. Sandmann Says:

    Thank you for this beautiful piece of writing, Rebel.

    Ride safe!

    Respect to the deserving,

  16. FF Says:

    Let me clarify. When I said “northeast” I didn’t even factor in Maine or New Hampshire. When I say northeast, I mean NJ, NY, CT, Masshole and Vermont— the state that made Bernie Sanders a senator. So my apologies, Shovelhead.

    Secondly, my comment was directed at people PARTICULARLY IN THE NORTHEAST who disrespect Robert E. Lee and Confederate war dead.

    Maybe you don’t see the pattern I see, but it seems apparent to me that the same people who are ok with desecrating Confederate memorials are the same people who shit all over the bill of rights.

    Try it out sometime. Get into an argument with someone who doesn’t think the USA should honor our fallen Confederate soldiers. Then change the subject to the 1st or 2nd amendment. Ask them if they think people wanting to go to Church on Sunday are selfish and don’t care about saving lives. Ask them if they think it’s ok to arrest a man for opening up his barber shop. Then ask him or her if there is more than two genders.

    Connect the goddamn dots.

    New York provided 400,000–460,000 men during the war, nearly 21% of all the men in the state and more than half of those under the age of 30. Of the total enlistment, more than 130,000 were foreign-born, including 20,000 from British North American possessions such as Canada. 51,000 were Irish and 37,000 German. The average age of the New York soldiers was 25 years, 7 months, although many younger men and boys may have lied about their age in order to enlist.

    Per capital I do believe that their deaths are still lower than Indiana, Illinois, Ohio or PA.

    I don’t like these cocksuckers who voted for Cuomo and Deblasio. In fact, I HATE THEM.

  17. Dasein Says:

    Paladin: I posted a question for you in the Saloon a while back. If time and interest permit, I look forward to your thoughts.

  18. Paladin Says:

    Sig 45;

    As I stated in my post, “the accuracy of that number might depend on who’s doing the actual reporting.” The article I linked to pretty much says the same thing.

    Because the linked article happens to be put forth by Fox News it deserves extra scrutiny? Sounds like you’ll believe whatever the liberal press decides to pour down your throat.

    As to my point: The politicians and their fear mongering MSM have stampeded the cattle and very few question any of what they say. I find it ironic that those that post on this page and the author of this page continually disparage (with good reason) grandstanding politicians and the propaganda put forth by their MSM as it relates to MCs and the lifestyle in general. Yet; here you are, kneeling at the trough, wolfing down what the politicians and their MSM feed you, never questioning anything, unless of course it runs counter to your pre-programming.


  19. FF Says:


    We’ve become a nation divided by those who believe in Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, and those who pay lip service to those things only when it’s convenient and doesn’t get in the way of their personal agenda. Unfortunately for me, I live in an area full of the latter. Annoying ‘Karens’

  20. gordo Says:

    To the fallen

    Lest we forget

  21. Dasein Says:

  22. Shovelhead Says:


    Have a nice Memorial Day, pray we can hold on to our Republic! If that doesn’t work…The 2nd amendment will!

  23. bill Says:

    All gave some, some gave all


  24. FF Says:


    Here you go

    While although NY’s death toll is up there with the flyover states, how many of them were Irish conscripts:

  25. FF Says:


    NY sided with King George III, NJ voted against Lincoln twice. I could go on and on. Yet these provincial snobs look down on the Deplorables in flyover country. Go look up the stats from the Civil War. See who shed the most blood for Lincoln’s war.

  26. SIG 45 Says:

    Paladin if you read your article it also discusses the fact that many believe the number is underreported. Many were missed in the early days as testing was not even possible as tests were not available. Regardless it’s a Fox article and that makes it deserving of extra scrutiny. Most importantly, who the fuck cares if it it 75000 or 105000? What is your point other than to prove you see conservative politics everywhere. Many veterans are among the number and for that I will remember.

  27. Shovelhead Says:

    Come to the Northeast and say that Motherfucker, See what happens!

    Respect to those who fought and died for American freedom, they gave up their lives so FF can say fuck the Northeast.

  28. CatfishOCNY Says:

    As always your writing is sad, poetic, poignant and powerful. Thank you Skald.

  29. gordo Says:

    It’s not what the truth is

    It is what it is perceived to be

    Tell enough lies they become truths

  30. Paladin Says:

    “It takes only seconds to look and see that this morning, at 11 a.m. Pacific Time on May 22, 2020, 95,213 people have died in the last 84 days.” Well; the accuracy of that number might depend on who’s doing the actual reporting. death-toll/


  31. SIG 45 Says:

    Well said. I remember the days riding in the backseat with my brother as my father took us to all the graves. The only thing we did together.

  32. Gordo Says:


    can feel that post

    Memorial Day in 2015 was riding stateside at the time of the Twin Peaks massacre

    When researching that story found your blog

    Have to continue supporting ya Rebel

    Ride/write on

    Thx again


  33. FF Says:

    Hail those northern sons from Indiana. They fought and died for the Union, agree with it or not. Fuck the Northeast, who took all the credit, shed little of the blood. I respect all these soldiers

  34. stroker Says:

    Thanks Again Rebel for what you do, what you did, and for reminding us what Memorial Day is about.
    Now, go take a ride!

  35. Woodstock Says:


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