Wreaths Across America Canceled by Arlington and Army: Backlash Ensues
The December 19th event for Wreaths Across America canceled by the Office of Army National Cemeteries and Arlington National Cemetery has brought massive backlash. The ANC says they canceled the event due to concerns over Covid. Since the event would have been held OUTSIDE with plenty of “social distancing,” there is no excuse for the cancellation. And several lawmakers who are veterans urged them to immediately reverse their decision. Wreaths Across America was blindsided by the ruling.
Update: President Trump tweeted that he has reinstated the event!
I have reversed the ridiculous decision to cancel Wreaths Across America at Arlington National Cemetery. It will now go on!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 17, 2020
Due to the current COVID-19 situation across the nation and within the NCR, it is with great regret that ANC is cancelling Wreaths Across America at ANC and the Soldiers’ and Airmen’s Home Cemetery on Dec. 19, 2020.
Please read the full press release at: https://t.co/b6EEqpsmRh
— Arlington National Cemetery (@ArlingtonNatl) November 16, 2020
The bogus decision:
“We did not make this decision lightly. Despite the controls developed to disperse potential crowds in time and space, and required personal safety protocols, we determined that hosting any event of this scale risked compromising our ability to accomplish our core mission of laying veterans and their eligible family members to rest.” Executive Director Karen Durham-Aguilera
They “determined” wrong.
— Wreaths Across America (@WreathsAcross) November 17, 2020
Numerous lawmakers, including Senator Tom Cotton and Rep Dan Crenshaw spoke up:
“This decision to cancel #wreathsacrossamerica must be reversed immediately. Critical thinking must win out over emotion. Large areas, outside and well spaced, with masks on, is perfectly safe. Our fallen deserve to be remembered.” Rep Dan Crenshaw
Why did @ArlingtonNatl cancel @WreathsAcross this year despite it being a socially-distant, safe event even during COVID? It doesn't make sense. Glad @DanCrenshawTX gets it. #RememberHonorTeach pic.twitter.com/oAqO6pPvCd
— dave mcculloch ?? (@dtmcculloch) November 17, 2020
“I encourage Army leaders to reconsider this decision. Thousands of people have marched in DC streets the past couple weekends for Joe Biden and Donald Trump. Surely volunteers can responsibly place wreaths on the graves of our fallen heroes at Arlington.” Sen Tom Cotton (R-AR)
Canceling #WreathsAcrossAmerica’s efforts at Arlington Cemetery reflects emotion and fear, not logic. Is there anything more socially distant than an outdoor activity at a cemetery?
Honor our heroes, including men I led in combat & West Point classmates. https://t.co/xxcpqLOe3R
— Daniel Gade (@gadeforvirginia) November 17, 2020
People other than lawmakers also tweeted that the event should be reinstated:
“Wear masks. It’s outside. Safest activity in which any true patriot can participate. Honor those who’ve served. Who have fallen. Who have sacrificed for our freedom. Much better than the violence & protests we keep seeing.” @rbiliunas
“Cancelling #WreathsAcrossAmerica is the wrong move. Our country is failing on so many levels in 2020. You mean protests are fine no problem, but an event to honor those who served our country is not? Whoever canceled this needs to have their head examined.” @MJGood4three
“Outdoors with masks and gloves, this wonderful event is little danger to anyone. This is an atrocious decision and you must overturn it. #HonorTheFallen #WreathsAcrossAmerica” @Jim1Murphy (Navy veteran)
“Do the right thing. Honor those who have fallen to preserve our rights as Americans. If the NBA, NFL, MLB can continue, there is no legitimate reason #WreathsAcrossAmerica should be canceled.” @Miles_Dre71
I'm sad to hear that #WreathsAcrossAmerica has been cancelled this year.
Each December on National Wreaths Across America Day, there is a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, as well as at more than 2,100 additional locations across the world. pic.twitter.com/9TZ5V64mLN
— Ashley James (@AshleyJamesWMAR) November 17, 2020
Many people and companies have donated all year long to the wreath laying ceremony.
This disrespect driven by the ANC (Arlington National Cemetery) is an egregious example of decision-making based on a lie. Buckle up, America, if they do not reverse this, there will be more repercussions than just tweets.
Featured photo via Wreaths Across America
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