On the fifth day of the fifth month of 2010, five students at a high school in California were expelled for wearing patriotic attire. Several were wearing t-shirts with American flags, others were wearing patriotic themed bandanas.
This day is Cinco de Mayo day, a regional holiday in Mexican state of Puebla. This day, the fifth day of the fifth month is equivalent of the seventeenth day of the third month – Saint Patrick’s Day. Both days are and have become celebrations of cultural heritage and pride. Significantly, both days have also been adopted by drinking establishments as marketing events to drink pitchers of margaritas or greened-up beer.
The University of Kansas Medical Center has a comprehensive Diversity Calendar that lists many more events of cultural significant celebrations.
Back to Live Oak High School. The story is well known, has been extensively commented and complimented on. Essentially an Hispanic vice-prinicpal approached a set of five students who were wearing, until that day, allowed American patriotic attire – a blend of American flagged t-shirts and/or bandanas. The command was given to remove or reverse. They complied, were brought into the vice-principal’s office and were expelled for the day.
The fourth day of the seventh month is the day we celebrate American cultural heritage and pride. This is our, We The People’s, Independence Day. Our holiday lies outside the traditional school year. As such, there is no opportunity for collective celebration within the school system. (As a side note, our Independence Day does not exist as a drinking holiday.)
Throughout the school year, for elebration and educational opportunites, there are designated ethnic and culture awareness days and months. Again, the Kansas calendar link above provides a comprehensive list. Some of these days/weeks/months are self-proclaimed. Some are state or regional. While others have national interest and significance. For example, in 1999 the California Legislature adopted October as European American Heritage Month.
I do hereby proclaim the fourth day of every month as a celebration of the We The People and United We Stand Day. This day is to be celebrated with the wearing of patriotic attire and rememberances of our collective We.