Dog owners might not be too impressed when they’re able to point out a fallen piece of chicken or a thrown stick to their pooch, but dogs’ ability to follow that seemingly simple gesture places them in rare air in the animal kingdom.
Some research suggests that even chimpanzees, our closest evolutionary relatives, don’t understand pointing as well as dogs.
For decades, researchers have debated whether dogs obtain their ability to understand pointing by spending time with humans and learning it or if our furry companions are born with a capacity to comprehend this deceptively complex feat of communication.
One of the most enduring traditions of Memorial Day is the decoration of the graves of fallen service members with such items as flowers and American flags.
This annual day of commemoration was at one time referred to as Decoration Day because of this practice. My grandmother grew up in the deep South, where tradition held that you took an annual pilgrimage to your family cemetery, which in their case required a road trip to southern Arkansas, to clean and decorate the graves of all of your ancestors.
This tradition may have inspired the post Civil War movement to decorate the graves of those who died in military service. While the holiday was referred to as both Decoration Day and Memorial Day for decades, Memorial Day was declared a federal holiday in 1971 and is now celebrated on the last Monday in May.
Gestures of respect and commemoration on Memorial Day are made in acts both small and large, personal and ceremonial. Gratitude for the sacrifice and service of millions of American men and women takes place in all parts of the world, in countries where service members fell fighting as well as at memorials in the United States. Journey to the graves in Arlington National Cemetery, in small rural cemeteries and in foreign lands, and travel to battlefields and memorials where many are named and remembered through the images below.
Not that long ago, Margaret Mead was one of the most widely known intellectuals in America.
Her first book, “Coming of Age in Samoa,” published in 1928, when she was twenty-six, was a best-seller, and for the next fifty years she was a progressive voice in national debates about everything from sex and gender to nuclear policy, the environment, and the legalization of marijuana. (She was in favor—and this was in 1969.)
She had a monthly column in Redbook that ran for sixteen years and was read by millions. She advised government agencies, testified before Congress, and lectured on all kinds of subjects to all kinds of audiences.
She was Johnny Carson’s guest on the “Tonight Show.” Time called her “Mother to the World.” In 1979, the year after she died, President Jimmy Carter awarded her the Medal of Freedom.