On Friday, the day we left, Tony and I wandered the mall and all the memorials in the morning. It was hot outside! I thought we weren’t going to make it but melt away into a puddle. Tony is apparently a war memorial person so we walked to each. I myself, don’t care and was happy to go. The most awe-inspiring of them all was the WWII memorial. The Vietnam Memorial was…I can’t think of the word! It was overwhelming with all the names but, and I really hate to say this, it didn’t affect me. I don’t know why. Maybe because just one person dead in a war is horrendous. Or maybe I’m shallow and vapid. Either one. I also didn’t have any family die in that war. My father was drafted but thankfully stationed in Germany.
The WWII memorial was a architectural designer’s wet dream. It was placed perfectly with monuments on each end and water fixtures with wall art. It was very well done. My only complaint was the crosses. Around the memorial is states and territories and they are beautiful (check out the picture on the left I pulled from the National WWII Memorial site) Do you see the cross? The empty space is the long part and the horizontal bar behind the wreath is the, um, cross part. It’s actually very cool and an interesting design. But. I’m offended that a war memorial is bringing in a religious icon.
Now before you send me nasty email or leave nasty comments, just remember that, one, this is my opinion and, two, being brought up as a non-Christian and my own wacky head makes me hyper-sensitive to this topic. I realize a lot of people will disagree with me.
First of all, the people who fought in the war were not all Christian. I think that to ignore that fact or shoehorn all those beliefs into one religious symbol that not all believe(d) in is rude. Okay, rude is not the correct word. What’s the right word? A disservice? Maybe that’s it.
Second, what was WWII about? Land and control of the world, yes. I mean Germany, Japan, and Italy were basically trying to take over the world but Germany took part in genocide of people who were Jewish, Gay, Polish, wrong-thinking, purple, winged…you get the idea. Just people who are different. I think using this symbol and ignoring all the others is short-sited.
So there you have it. A diatribe on a memorial. Tomorrow I’ll post about the 8 hour flight home. Oh will the fun never end!