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More Than A Snow Day: Celebrate the Life of MLK Today!

More Than A Snow Day: Celebrate the Life of MLK Today!

If you’re a Lamoni campus student and thrilled with the prospect of having no classes today, your heart’s in the right place. But why weren’t classes canceled to begin with considering today is a nationally recognized holiday? Was Graceland ignoring a bigger problem that fixed itself with horrendous weather conditions?

The scheduling of classes for universities is tedious, and scheduling at Graceland is no different. When the administration gets together to plan the calendar for the next academic school year, they have to think about all the breaks they give – Fall, Thanksgiving, Winter, Spring, and Easter breaks for GU – and then think about what holidays to cancel classes for. There’s only so many days Graceland can cancel classes for without pushing the entire university back a week into the school year. If the university were to recognize more holidays, like MLK Day and Presidents Day for example, we’d probably be an extra week and have a… seventeen-week semester? There are many logistics to think about.

Still don’t think it’s fair? The ice storm was a blessing in disguise. Maybe for some it was about not going to class because they wanted a three day weekend. In college (and out of college), that’s the most any of us want. For others, the ice storm is forcing Graceland to cancel class on a day that there shouldn’t have be classes scheduled in the first place.

It’s a very tricky situation. It’s easy to think that it should be obvious – there shouldn’t be classes on MLK Day, period – but now that we’re here, we can spend the day recognizing Martin Luther King Jr. and maybe form some meaningful dialogue with all the extra hours of the day.

The Open-Mic scheduled for tonight at the Linden Street Coffee House has been postponed due to weather, and a date will be released later when set.

Here are some ways to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day without having to worry about the weather outside:

  • Watch Selma in your hall lounge or living room with a mug of scorching hot cocoa, a snuggie, and your phone on silent- or, wait until Thursday and see the movie at the Coliseum for the free COSA Thursday Night Movie.
  • Host a “Hairspray” sing-a-long and focus more on the racial injustices than the catchy tunes
  • Read some of Martin Luther King Jr.’s speeches, and read more than just the well-known “I Have a Dream” and “I’ve Been to the Mountain Top” ones
  • Read through the archive of articles on MLK on NY Times
  • Acknowledge racism – something we should do every day

Remember to think about Martin Luther King Jr. in more than just January and February. Recognizing social movements like the Civil Rights Movement and racial injustices shouldn’t be limited to two months out of the year. It’s a beautiful day and a beautiful message that shouldn’t be forgotten for ten months.

The weather might be crappy, but our attitudes don’t have to be. Think a little more today. Thank a little more.

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day!

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About Jenna Pitstick

Jenna Pitstick is a junior Theatre & Film and English double-major with an avid love for dogs, pancakes, and social justice. She is also co-president of Graceland’s Social Equality Alliance.

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