Patriotic Holidays and Symbols
Posted by Mark Martella on Sat, Aug 11, 2012 @ 1:15 PM
As I write this article, we just concluded the most patriotic forty days of the calendar year beginning with Memorial Day, followed by Flag Day on June 14th and ending with the Fourth of July. Growing up in New Jersey, I was too young to comprehend the Vietnam War and the sacrifices made by those veterans. However, since September 11th and the subsequent Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, my generation has witnesses the devastating losses to friends and family for the brave individuals who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
If you have not had an opportunity to go to the National Cemetery in Sarasota, I urge you to go and take your children so that they understand the cost of war. It especially hits home when you see the markers with young men and women who were born after 1990.
The holiday of Flag Day took on new meaning for myself and my family in 1996 as that is the day that my father, William “Bill” Martella passed away. My dad was a Korean Veteran and the most patriotic person I have ever known. Since then, I have tried to encourage people to fly the Flag on June 14th as a reminder of those who fought for the freedoms we often take for granted.
Finally, another enduring symbol for attorneys is Lady Justice or “Justitia”. Lady Justice is the individual who you will see in most courts holding the scales of justice. I recently received a quotation from Judge Hirsch, an eloquent and entertaining judge from the 11th Judicial Circuit for Miami-Dade County. He provided this quote by Anglo-Irish dramatist and statesman, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, from his closing argument on June 13, 1788, at the trial of Warren Hastings before British Parliament. I close with Mr. Sheridan’s invocation of the image of Justitia, the goddess of justice:
Justice I have now before me, august and pure! The abstract idea of all that would be perfect in the spirits and the aspirations of men! Where the mind rises; where the heart expands; where the countenance is ever placid and benign; where her favorite attitude is to stoop to the unfortunate; to hear their cry and to help them; to rescue and relieve, to succor and save; majestic, from her mercy; venerable, from her utility; uplifted, without pride; firm, without obduracy; beneficent in each preference; lovely, through in her frown!
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