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Americans have no idea what Memorial Day is — Memorial Day is about paying respect to those who fought and died while serving their country to protect the freedoms that Americans enjoy.

It’s not about remembering Neil Armstrong, celebrating LGBT issues, the first flight of the Wright brothers, or the freeing of the slaves.

When Mark Dice asked San Diegans what they thought the military holiday was all about, the response was demoralizing. Dice first asks a young woman, “What’s the purpose of Memorial Day?”, to which she refuses to even come up with an answer, asking, “Do I have to do this?”

Another African-American man is then told that Memorial Day is about celebrating the repeal of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ and the “inclusiveness of the LGBT community.” “I love the LGBT community, I’m all about it,” he responds. “What is the purpose of Memorial Day?” Dice asks another man. “No clue, that’s my answer,” he bluntly replies. Another man tells Dice that he would need to sit down and think about it before he could specifically say what Memorial Day was.

Failing to challenge Dice’s assertion that Memorial Day is about “the freeing of the slaves and the end of the civil war,” another man says he will commemorate the occasion by “doing some drinking.” A man wearing a red shirt and hat then agrees that it was right for the government to cancel NASA’s annual Memorial Day celebration of Neil Armstrong walking on the moon.
Stacy Adams Canada

A woman then relates what Memorial Day means to her, “a day off of work on Monday,” before another woman who says she has never took part in any Memorial Day activities agrees that the government is right to cancel Memorial Day, “if it’s in the best interests of the country.”

Told that Memorial Day is to commemorate “the first flight of the Wright brothers,” another man says he will recognize it by “partying” before admitting that he doesn’t know what Memorial Day is.

The video illustrates why Memorial Day observations are in decline, with less than 5 per cent of Americans typically attending a parade or visiting grave sites. According to a 2000 Gallup poll, two thirds of Americans knew exactly what Memorial Day was about, although a 2011 survey found that 80 per cent of Americans had confessed to having “little” or only “some” knowledge of the military holiday.

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