higher education, pluralism, religion, USA

Montgomery County’s strategic plan to vanish Christmas, Yom Kippur, AND Muslims

Shocking news in the land of the free. In order to avoid giving students Eid-al-Adha off, Montgomery County struck Christmas, Easter, Yom Kippur, and Rosh Hashanah from the calendar. Now school will still be closed and students can observe their holidays, but the NAMES of the holidays won’t be there.

In other words, dominant religions now become invisible: yet in their invisibility, they remain dominant and invulnerable and leak into the lives of all. By making them vanish, Montgomery County schools deprive Muslims and others of the argument for equal treatment. Montgomery County: I would have expected better. 

“Board member Michael A. Durso (District 5) was the sole vote against the calendar change. During the board’s discussion, he noted that Montgomery brags about its diversity and its embrace of different cultures.”

Yes, clearly. “Embrace” should mean “containment”.

“Zainab Chaudry, also a co-chair of the coalition, expressed dismay, too, contending the school board’s members were willing to “go so far as to paint themselves as the Grinch who stole Christmas” to avoid granting equal treatment for the Muslim holiday.

“They would remove the Christian holidays and they would remove the Jewish holidays from the calendar before they would consider adding the Muslim holiday to the calendar,” she said.”

Bonus for the haters: the internet is now aflame with Islamophobes who are blaming Muslims for taking away Christmas. Two birds with one stone. Well played, Montgomery County. Why don’t you just throw all the Muslim kids out on the street?


Home-Making Education for ALL

Remember Home Economics?

How about Home Economics education for *everyone*? Maybe this will give our daughters’ generation a chance at equal opportunity? As of now domestic chores still fall overwhelmingly to the lot of girls/women, no matter what their professional or other caregiving responsibilities may be – and we can discuss caregiving as well, because why does Mother have to be laundry person, the trash person, the meals person, the nurse, the educator, the soccer-transportation, and so on?

No matter how many feel-good feminist videos and memes we consume, at the end of the day, when home-making – the creation of hospitable, habitable, welcoming spaces, healthy meals, etc. – falls overwhelmingly to females, this of course amounts inexorably to unequal opportunity, unequal work opportunity, unequal promotion (and tenure) opportunity, unequal leisure opportunity.