According to Rasmussen Reports, 50 percent of the nation ranks Memorial Day as one of the nation’s most important holidays.  Not bad, but perhaps that number should be stronger, considering the primary purpose of the holiday is not to welcome in summer, but to honor men and women who sacrificed their lives in defense of the country.

Respect for the holiday doesn’t appear to be correlated with views toward the military.  In fact, 74 percent of respondents claim to have a favorable opinion of the U.S. military, and 40 percent say they have a relative or close friend who lost their life serving the nation.

But what other holidays might trump Memorial Day? July 4th, perhaps. Thanksgiving, a good possibility.  But Labor Day? Columbus Day? Doubtful.

Perhaps the modest support for Memorial Day has less to do with the meaning of the holiday and more to do with the loss of meaning.  54 percent of adults told Rasmussen they plan to do something special to celebrate the holiday.  I was certainly one of those people who took advantage of the long weekend to attend a BBQ and spend time splashing in the water with my children.

But with weak numbers like these, I think next year our family is going to do a little more memorializing and a little less celebrating.