We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
When United States presidents are sworn in on their inauguration day, they recite an oath promising to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. You may call me cynical if you wish, but I do not see the validity in taking the oath knowing full well that the words spoken that day will serve as a mere a lip service. I know that each U.S. president of my lifetime has either willingly practiced measures of injustice by imprisoning ideological enemies, bloated the defense budget not for common defense but empirical defense, or taken away civil liberties under the guise of promoting national security. Each of these acts puts the president in direct contradiction of their initial oath of office, and does not follow through on the aforementioned preamble of the U.S. Constitution, considered by many to be the most respected document in governmental history.
President’s Day is akin to Columbus Day for me. I do not consider Christopher Columbus to be a hero, just like I do not see the office of the president to be a source of inspiration. U.S. presidents are entrusted with great responsibility every four years. If they cannot see past their corporate ties or ambitions of enhancing their presidential powers, then they have not upheld their inaugural oath taken at the outset of their term. Because of this inherent degradation of the most powerful job in the world, U.S. presidents should not be given a national holiday. Martin Luther King Jr. sought equality for all mankind, so his national holiday is just. Having a U.S. President’s Day is unjust because the president usually commit atrocities in the quest for continued domination. Having a Christopher Columbus Day is unjust because Columbus nearly committed a complete genocide of largely peaceful people. Some national holidays need to be reconsidered.
I just read an opinion piece that argued for a national Frederick Douglass Day. I agree with the author.
After all, Douglass lived through his own slavery as well as the slavery era, and was a rational voice heard through the din of pro-slavery rhetoric of his time. I would be honored to have a Douglass Day. Or a Gandhi Day. Or a Mother Theresa Day. Or a Cesar Chavez Day. National holidays honoring specific people should at least feature people who we feel compelled to tell their story, not people who create havoc for entire segments of a population.