[Rant] Are we not so bothered about remembering our War Dead?

The 11th November has special significance to a lot of people (me included as it’s my birthday), as this is when we as a nation like many others remember our war dead as it coincides with the end of the First World War in 1918. Leading up to this date people donate money to the Poppy Appeal organised by the Royal British Legion, who in their own words are:

a charity that supports the serving and ex-Service community, and their families, as well as being one of the country's largest membership organisations. We are probably best-known for our role as the nation's custodian of Remembrance and for the Poppy Appeal which we organise annually.

In exchange for a donation you are given a Poppy which you wear up until the 11th November to show your support for the Legion, those they support and not forgetting those that gave their lives in any of our wars to protect this country and what we believe in.

Why a Poppy?

Well during the First World War the Poppy was the only thing that grew in the aftermath of the complete devastation and carnage of the Flanders and Picardy regions of Belgium and Northern France which prompted John McCrae serving with the Canadian Armed Forces to write his famous “In Flanders' Fields” poem in 1915 (a copy of which you can read here).

After the War ordinary civilians wanted to show their respects and remember those that had fallen. So Moina Michael (an American War Secretary), inspired by John McCrae's poem started to sell Poppies to raise money for the ex-service community, a tradition that has continued ever since.

So why am I writing this?

Well wandering around just lately I’ve noticed so few people are wearing poppies at this time of year. When I was a child I remember you had problems finding someone who wasn’t wearing one. Now it seems to be the opposite. Now of course some may have already contributed to the appeal and decided not to wear their poppy. Others may not have gotten round to it or not been able to find anywhere to buy one.

But please whatever the case, take a moment other than the 2 minutes silence on the 11th to remember those that gave their lives so that we can have what we have today as without these brave souls our country would be a very different place indeed.

If you can’t find a Poppy seller you can of course donate online simply by visiting the British Legion website:

http://www.britishlegion.org.uk/

Published Wednesday, October 29, 2008 2:20 PM by chobbs
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