Location: Palm Beach County, Florida, United States

Recently have been told I look like Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island. I hadn't heard that in years, but that is a good place to start as to what I look like, although she had a better bod. I have three boys and have been married for 13 years. Born of a Navy family, in Hawaii, one Mom, one Dad, one sister and one brother. The eldest of three children. BS in Applied Mathematics. Consider Pensacola my home town although I moved every 2-3 years of my life growing up. Currently work in the aerospace industry in an engineering position while being a Mom. Of Celtic heritage and very proud of it.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

There is a Holiday in our Midst

It appears the celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King's Birthday is Monday in which all school children will have off and all banks will be closed. I know this holiday is coming because of two things... which are pathetic really... one is I seem to have some sort of 6th sense on when we get to sleep in. Sleeping 'in' to me is anything after 7:30 and I am NOT a morning person. If I could sleep until 8:30 every morning I would be a very happy girl. The other reason I know this holiday is coming is my 2nd grader is learning about MLK in school and I'm hearing about it... realizing his birthday must be upon us.

Son#2 gets in the car on Monday and says, "Mom. Do you remember when Dr. Martin Luther King was shot? Where were you? How old were you?"

Heh. The great historian I am, I couldn't remember what year it transpired. So finally knowing his teacher is a year older than I, and his happening to know his teacher was 3, I was able to tell him I felt certain I was 2 and 'No, I do not remember the event or anything surrounding it.'

He, however, is quite the plethora of information from race riots to segration.

Every Tuesday, my eldest has band practice and so while waiting, I grab the younger two and we go to a French Patisserie down the street and they get a snack. Son#3 had to use the restroom and I pointed to the back of the store. This is when Son#2, the newest expert on all that Dr. King stood for, says to his younger brother, while LOOKING at me and NOT in a quiet voice, but in somewhat of a bravado, "There is ONE bathroom in the back of this restaurant and BOTH black people and white people can use it."

Heh. I wasn't sure what to say accept to tell him he was correct.

Now I have heard over the years people poo pooing this holiday. I worked with people who did not like Dr. King for whatever reason. I'm sure y'all have heard it all too. I ignore it. Here is my take.

I don't think our country needs to forget our history and the fact of the matter is, minorities did not have the same rights as white people and that was just flat out wrong. It was a tough time in our history and those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it. If it takes the celebration of someone's birthday to make our schools teach them about the civil rights struggles, then so be it. It is a part of our history, a history that must not be forgotten.

So where we aren't getting a birthday cake for Dr. King and more than likely the only person who will speak of him on Monday will be my resident expert, Son#2, I think it is a good thing. And for more than just the fact I get to sleep in. Every generation needs to be educated... and this is as good a time as any.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only problem I see is that we now have consolidated Pres. Lincoln's & Pres. Washington's birthdays. That provides an easy way to 'glance over' these two great men, who, I believe have done more overall for this country.


3:53 PM  
Blogger Tammi said...

I can see him, the intensity of his expression, the seriousness in his voice as he asks. The pride as he stands there and "announces" that there is only 1 bathroom for both blacks and whites.

I think it rocks. Man Bou, I really like your kids!!!

6:37 PM  
Blogger Jody said...

While I think it's important to learn the history of our nation I think that the "selective learning" that happens in the schools is wrong. Like a previous commenter said, President's Day is a single day- and I don't think anything is closed for it. I will leave it at that as I really want to say that your kids must be a riot. Do you wake up every day just wondering what will happen next?

6:49 PM  
Blogger Boudicca said...

I just don't think that MLK's Birthday holiday should be disparaged because someone in the government decided to combine holidays... something I personally don't have a problem with.

Banks are closed on President's Day as well as my kid's school. It's a holiday.

At my places of work, past and present, we never got MLK or President Day off.

7:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice Post Bou.

But as you noted, most folks who have the holiday off will use it as an excuse to sleep late. Few will spend any time thinking about the person or issue the holiday was created for. This seems to be the case with most of our holidays these days.

As for myself, I work for a firm that operates 7 days a week. I get very few holidays off. So to me, it's just another day to dress casual to work and earn double-time-and-a-half holiday overtime pay.
-- George

7:39 PM  
Blogger Contagion said...

I'll go the deep end. I get this holiday off, and I don't want it. I'm not saing Dr. King wasn't a great man, he was. But there were a lot of great men and their birthdays are not holidays.

All this is to me is another wasted day. Up here in the Great White north there is not a lot to do with this day if your not into winter sports or shopping. I honestly would rather work and have them give me a holiday later in the year, not 2 weeks after christmas/newyears. This year for the first time I'm getting Presidents day off, and again I'd rather not.

8:24 AM  

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