There are times when our national culture can take the form of a high school or college campus. Back in school days, the whole mood of the student body could change based on what happened in the big game, or if crisis struck. For our nation, the oil spill has become the new Katrina, as day after day brings sad news of polluted waters, deceased wildlife and a deader business outlook for those who depend upon the Gulf.
It’s at times like this when our various media can really serve to uplift our nation’s spirits, and thus Memorial Day weekend comes at a wonderful time. Memorial Day was founded to pay honor to those who’ve given their lives in service to our country. There’s hardly anything that can be more inspiring for us to focus on this weekend, and there are plently of opportunities.
Heading the line-up, of course, is PBS’ Memorial Day concert from the nation’s capital on Sunday evening, hosted by Gary Sinise and Joe Mantegna and including Brad Paisley, Lionel Ritchie and many others.
One of my favorites is the pre-race festivities of the Indianapolis 500, which always include the music of the nation and the state of Indiana and a significant moment of silence for those whove given the ultimate sacrifice
AMC will bring you a Memorial Day war movie marathon starting at 9:30 a.m., including “Devil’s Brigade” (1968), “The Enemy Below” (1957), “To Hell and Back” (1955), “The Big Red One” (1980), “Heartbreak Ridge” (1986), “Courage Under Fire” (1996), “Hamburger Hill” (1987) and “Wake Island” (1942).
If you just want to watch one of your old favorite shows on Monday, you can find a a “Star Trek: Next Generation” marathon on BBC America or some nostalgic favorites Monday night, including a “7th Heaven” episode about the living nativity on WB, “Evel Knievel” and his red, white and blue stripes on CMT, and “Little House on the Prairie” on TV Land.
Whatever your weekend holds, I hope it features a celebration with family or friends, a chance to have your spirits uplifted, perhaps a trip to church and certainly a reflection of thanks to those who’ve made such luxury and lifestyle possible for us all.