At a recent Vidette Staff meeting while discussing the best ways to represent Labor Day in the paper, there seemed to be some confusion. After few suggestions from fellow staff members, like talking to a member of the ROTC or pondering if it had something to do with trees, it was decided that the most important thing to acknowledge, is what this holiday isn’t about.
1. Veterans Day
Veterans Day is a holiday that honors Veterans of the armed service. What the veterans of our country have done for us is inarguably valuable, and they have been one of the greatest forces in creating what we live in today. That said, Labor Day was created to please unionists and workers following the Pullman’s Strike — a strike created by railroad workers — so thank the Veterans you know every day, but don’t call them for this occasion.
2. Memorial Day
Memorial Day causes similar confusion as Veterans Day, but unlike Veterans Day, this holiday is meant to recognize those who have died fighting for the U.S. Again, though worthy of our thought every day, Labor Day is reminding us of those who died in the Haymarket affair — wherein four protestors and seven police officers died during a peaceful rally in support of unions in Chicago in 1886.
3. Arbor Day
Yes, they rhyme, and no, they have nothing else to do with each other. Arbor Day was created in 1872 in Nebraska — interesting to think that Labor Day wasn’t created for another 22 years — to encourage the planting and care-taking of trees. Labor Day on the other hand is trying to encourage the value of taking care and remembering the workers and laborers, whom apparently didn’t deserve the attention as quickly as trees did.
4. Columbus Day
Though not too many of us were thinking this would be a problem, I just want to remind the audience that the continent we live on was not discovered by the Union members we are trying to recognize, or Columbus for that matter, but that’s for another day.
5. Institute Day
An Institute Day is not a holiday, but a day where teachers work and many elementary and secondary school students get off. Labor Day is a Federal Holiday that was created to recognize all the hard work put in by workers in our lives. It is not the same thing, so this Monday, try not to treat it like it is.