Remembrance Day? What’s That?

BY:: Emilyanne Stocks and Lakshman Hariharan

Over 66,000 Canadian soldiers gave their lives to fight in World War I so we could live our lives free from fear. More than 172,000 soldiers, sailors and airmen were wounded. The war lasted 4 years and ended in 1918 on the eleventh month of the eleventh day on the eleventh hour. It was Canada’s enormous sacrifice that helped lead to Canada’s independent signature on the Peace Treaty. Canada had attained nation status; our country was no longer regarded as just a colony of England. These were the courageous men who stood fast at Ypres, captured Regina Trench, scaled Vimy Ridge, apprehended Passchendaele, and captured Mons on November 11, 1918.

This is the significance of celebrating Remembrance Day, also known as Armistice Day, on November 11th at 11am.
To show that we care and remember the actions of the brave and courageous soldiers who protected our liberty, we… stand in silence for a mere two minutes? Is this really all Remembrance Day has become?
Many students fidget with their pockets, finish schoolwork, and even worse, talk over the Remembrance Day address on the P.A. system.
In fifty years from now, will we even have those measly two minutes of silence? Will a voice from a speaker reminding us that it’s Remembrance Day be all we get?
We are nearing the centennial of the day World War I ended. We must start and continue to honour these heroic men and women properly by then or we never will.
Students and faculty from schools and other government buildings should show their respect in more meaningful ways, not just by standing for about 120 seconds in relative silence.
When asked, Kimberly Urquhart, 17, said, “I think we should have an assembly. Missing a period or two of a subject is worth it to show our appreciation for veterans. Most students don’t even respect the two minutes of silence.”
“It totally wasn’t enough,” said Katlyn Polley. “We could do more for our Canadian soldiers.”
Several guest speakers are available to come to schools and speak about their experiences and remind us of our promise to remember the sacrifices made by those soldiers. Video archives with interviews of veterans are also available to show during an assembly.
‘Lest we forget’ are words that we talk about during Armistice Day.
Talk is cheap. We need to put our money where our mouth is and show our appreciation for Canadians soldiers who sacrificed themselves for us.