A Hearty Constitution
In the United States, we celebrate our patriotism a lot.
There’s the Fourth of July, of course, when we revel in our independence from those evil British overlords. (Sorry Ben—they brainwash us over here.) And in February we have Washington’s Birthday a.k.a. President’s Day a.k.a. George Washington Day, at least in Virginia.
Don’t forget Patriot Day. That’s the official designation of September 11—although I suspect schoolchildren 50 years from now will still be calling it “9/11” more than anything else.
But do you recognize the importance of September 17?
If you’re a teacher, you probably do. The law creating Constitution Day directs all schools in the U.S. that accept federal funding to offer a constitutionally oriented educational program of some variety on that day or the nearest weekday.
You may not be sold on the idea of another federal holiday. Especially when it doesn’t even give you the day off of work.
It might sit a bit easier if you view the day as a celebration of fundamental rights enshrined in the Bill of Rights. Like freedom of speech.
It was on September 17, in 1967, that Jim Morrison of The Doors exercised his freedom of speech, defying the powers-that-be at CBS by singing, “Girl, we couldn’t get much higher” live on The Ed Sullivan Show.
So let’s cherish Constitution Day as yet another opportunity to pat ourselves on the back as a nation. Do it for liberty. Do it for freedom.
Do it for Jim Morrison.
P.S. Ben—Jim was a Yank ... so you can do it for John, Paul, George, and Ringo. They loved the Constitution, too. After all, the White Album did include “The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill (of Rights).”