Quit Dreaming

According to today’s Greenwich Time, Veterans and Italians don’t like the idea of our schools remaining open on the two holidays honoring those groups. The schools say that there are too many holidays in the fall and the learning schedule is disrupted by closing and reopening so often; the folks who object see more important things at stake.

World War II Veteran John Macri said that having the children take the day off to attend the parades and hear from the veterans is much more meaningful than anything they would learn in school, from a text book or a teacher.

“It just makes a much bigger impact,” he said.

I hate to break it to Mr. Macri but I never attended a parade in veterans’ honor on November 11th and I don’t know any school kid who did. It may have been too cold to go fishing but we certainly spent the day off enjoying ourselves and not observing what should have been a solemn event. I doubt kids today are any different.

I am the child of two WWII veterans and I honor their service and the service of all veterans who served in any of our wars. But to be realistic about things, closing school for two days “to send a message” doesn’t accomplish much. I think my friend and World War II hero, Chuck Standard, has the right idea:

But World War II veteran Chuck Standard, 89, said that taking away the Veterans holiday is fine with him.

“When I was growing up, we all stood up in school on Nov. 11 and faced east for two minutes of silence. To me that’s just as good,” he said.

We could do the same thing for Columbus Day, too – after all, isn’t Spain somewhere to our East?

2 Comments

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2 responses to “Quit Dreaming

  1. Anonymous

    I would suggest taking away Martin Luther King day before Columbus Day for two reasons:

    1) Nobody has a single holiday for themself, not even a US president. Lincoln and Washington’s birthdays were combined years back. Christopher Columbus brought European civilization to the Western Hemisphere and hence our existence on this continent (unless ofcourse you are native America), which is far more profound then the accomplishments of the civil rights movement. There wouldn’t be a civil rights movement without Columbus.

    2) Take away staff devel0pment days instead of true holidays. They are a waste of taxpayer money and can be conducted on Columbus Day if school officials so desire.

    The fact that most people don’t actively celebrate a holiday is no reason to take it away. Most kids would gladly sit around on Christmas too if their parents didn’t make them go to church, but is that a reason to stop celebrating? The simple act of formally recognizing a holiday helps people remember the sacrifices and accomplishments that most people would so easily forget.

    By the way, the hacks ot the BOE are always looking for stupid things to focus on. Instead of building projects and core competencies in education, they are looking at ways to cram just one more day into our kids lives, as if that is the holy grail of accomplishing something, anything! in terms of educational progress. And how much do we collectively pay these retards to educate our children??

    Presumably people who read this blog are interested in real estate. Education in the town of Greenwich is probably one of the highest priorities for people as they think about where to live (even if fair hsouing prevents realtors from talking about it – dumb, dumb, dumb). The continued slide in our public education system is not only a detriment to the long term well-being of 10,000 children but also the related performance of real estate.

  2. CEA

    Why do we celebrate Columbus day at all? For “discovering” America? If you want an Italian-American Pride day, that is fine. But this is not a holiday that a school and the markets should be shut down for.

    MLK Day is another holiday I do not agree with, as MLK was neither a religious nor an elected personage. Again, this is more about African-American Pride day.

    Of all the holidays, I can agree with Veteran’s Day, because of the sacrifices made. I would think, though, that spending an hour in class learning about what that sacrifice was would be far more beneficial, as you would then be GUARANTEED the child would learn what was being recognized. Giving them the day off (as I well recall from being a student), only means “vacation time”, not “remembrance time”.