WO should NOT have MLK Day off

Justin Anair


“We should have Martin Luther King Day off!!!”

Many voices within WO and beyond express  Martin Luther King day off. If we should have MLK Day off, then we should have Constitution Day off. And President’s Day off. Heck, by that logic, we should even have Malcolm X Day off.

A month ago, the day of a national educator, civil rights activist and a historic leader was celebrated. At that time, many loud voices made extremely bold statements regarding West Ottawa’s negligence to take the day off and honor a national hero.

The statements made seem to be logical. The loud voices made the following bold points:

  • It was signed as a national holiday by president Ronald Reagan.
  • Many government employees and schools across the nation have this day off.
  • MLK deserves respect and was an incredible world leader.
  • MLK was a major leader, protester, and civil rights activist.
  • MLK cherished education for everyone greatly.

These points are all logical and seem to justify having Martin Luther King day off; however, these points can be applied to many other national holidays.

September 17, 1789. The adoption of the Constitution of the United States. The Constitution took months to perfect and is considered one of the greatest documents to be written and sculpted for a government. Considering we love and cherish the Constitution, taking off time is necessary to celebrate Constitution Day.

  • It was signed as a national holiday by the Congress of the United States.
  • Almost all schools and government employees celebrate the weekend following Constitution day.
  • The Constitution is a major document of the United States and demonstrates a strong democratic government.
  • The Constitution also states that education should be applied and available to everyone in the U.S

If the people of Ottawa County should demand West Ottawa to take the day off and commemorate MLK, WO should, by that logic, have Constitution Day off as well.

George Washington and Abraham Lincoln are two highly significant presidents in U.S history. Their impact on our country, as well as the impact of the other 42 presidents, led us to sign the federal holiday of Presidents Day. Presidents day offers a remembrance of all the past Commander-in-chief’s that have sculpted the U.S to what it is today. If MLK Day deserves school’s to take off time, time should be taken off to recognize the 44 presidents of the U.S.

  • It is a national holiday in the United States, whether it be referred to as “Washington’s Birthday,” or “Presidents day.”
  • All of the presidents are recognized world leaders. Their contributions and actions have had a lasting legacy in the world.
  • Some presidents fought for civil rights and others signed amendments regarding civil equality.
  • Presidents, such as  Eisenhower, Lincoln, and Roosevelt, fought, reformed and sculpted the structure of education to what it is today.

Since MLK Day is being justified as a day to take off, we should take time off for Presidents day as well.

Behind the  looming shadow of Martin Luther King stands Malcolm X. Malcolm X and MLK were huge contributors to the civil rights movement. If we take the day off to celebrate the glory of MLK, we should take the time to celebrate the glory of Malcolm X too, based on the logic many have come up with.

  • Malcolm X day is a state holiday in both California and Illinois and has been proposed multiple times to the U.S Congress.
  • Malcolm X was an incredible world leader. He was a member of the Islamic faith and was recognized throughout the world for his fight for civil rights.
  • Malcolm X was denied a fair education and was homeschooled. For this reason, Malcolm X fought for education and claimed education is essential for the future.

 West Ottawa takes the time to recognize and appreciate the important events and figures of our nation. Taking time to recognize Martin Luther King, our presidents, the Constitution, and Malcolm X is important, but taking a day off for each important event and each important figure of our nation is certainly not needed.