Red, White, and Blue Holiday Clarification

Does it seem like Summer Federal Holidays exist for Paid Time Off (PTO), sales, and barbeques?In my opinion it looks like people are trying to get the most out of their red, white, and blue party essentials. Considering the history behind some of these holidays, the celebratory nature can be off putting. It would be wrong to assume all U.S. Citizens view these Summer Federal Holidays as an excuse to party. In fact, people across the U.S. are celebrating these patriotic holidays for different reasons.

Memorial Day (May 29, 2023)

Memorial Day Quote

Technically, Memorial Day is a Spring Federal Holiday, because it falls on the last Monday of May. From an academic standpoint, it’s the last mini-break till Summer Vacation. That being said most people misconstrued the meaning behind Memorial Day. It is not a time to thank Service Members for their service. It’s not a time to praise Veterans for giving their youth to their country. It’s about the men and women that are no longer with us. It’s about acknowledging those who died in battle. Those who succumbed to their battlefield injuries are recognized on Memorial Day as well. Keeping that in mind, it’s a very somber holiday.

Side Note: Prisoners of War and Missing In Action Service Members are recognized on September 15, 2023. Not May 29, 2023, because we hold out hope that they are still alive. However, it is not uncommon to give a moment of silence or display a table setting for one throughout the year during various events and memorials.


Flag Day (June 14, 2023)

Benjamin Franklin quote

Although Flag Day is not a PTO Holiday, this holiday occurs the week of Father’s Day and Juneteenth (Since American Commercialism makes a point of avoiding the patriotic color scheme for this holiday, I will discuss it’s history at a later date). It would be more fitting to put it in the honorable mention category, but I was determined to talk about these in chronological order. So, here we go. As the name implies, Flag Day commemorates the United States of America’s first flag. At this point, the flag only had 13 stats embroidered in blue and color blocked by red and white stripes. It was an important step in U.S. severing ties with Great Brittian. Regardless of a nation’s size, symbols are crucial for distinguishing itself from others. From an analytical perspective, the U.S. Flag acknowledges it’s relationship with Great Brittian by keeping the same color scheme, but the overall design implies Great Britain’s colonies are unified.

Independence Day ( July 4, 2023)

Independence Day Quote

Unlike Flag Day, Federal Employees get PTO for Independence Day. There’s a common misconception about Independence Day. It’s not the day the Thirteen Colonies won their independence from Great Brittian. It is the day the Declaration of Independence was signed. In recent years, the holidays importance has wavered, because there was an opportunity to abolish slavery. Majority rule was needed to sign the Declaration of Independence. That being said, Abolishing slavery became tomorrow’s problem. In truth, the holiday commemorates the independence for some not all. The reality of the holiday’s purpose hasn’t stopped fireworks displays and community events from occurring. We’re just at a point where people are thinking about why we celebrate these holidays and how they feel about them. Just food for thought.

Labor Day (September 4, 2023)

Martin Luther King Jr Labor Quote

Here’s another holiday that’s become a far cry of it’s original purpose. Yes, this holiday falls in September. The first day of Autumn is September 23, 2023. Plus, it’s like the last Summer blowout before the Autumn decor officially takes over. Getting back on track, Labor Day (in the U.S.) is supposed to honor the American Labor Movement and the workers that strived to improve their standard of living. The Industrial Revolution changed labor across the globe. Mass product of goods and services changed how people lived their day to day life. Laborers got the short end of the stick and had little to no protection from harsh working conditions and unreasonable wages. The labor movement wasn’t a legislative fight won overnight. It’s a movement and holiday that impacts more Americans than one would think. Fun fact, it is one of the holidays that’s actually supposed to be celebrated picnics and parades. Ironically, most modern laborers still have to work on Labor Day.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, you don’t have to think about the meaning to enjoy these holidays. If you are curious about the events your nation chooses to commemorate, it’s interesting to see where it started and how it’s going. I hope you enjoyed Trisha’s Go In Fridays. Have a great weekend! Hope you stop by next week for Motivational Mondays with Trisha.

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