General Question

elbanditoroso's avatar

Why are libraries closed on MLK Day?

Asked by elbanditoroso (28866points) January 18th, 2016

It seems to be that libraries (and perhaps schools) ought to be open on MLK Day so that students and scholars could do research and read about MLK’s accomplishments.

Closing the doors to learning on a day which is designed to enhance understanding – seems like a very odd public policy response.

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14 Answers

jca's avatar

It’s a national holiday, #1. #2, I’m guessing that the public employers would have to pay holiday pay for employees that work on a holiday, which, with all the budget constraints and cutbacks and “doing more with less,” it would not be cost effective.

Now with the internet available to most, people could google and do research from their homes, if they chose to. People are also free to gather and memorialize in public places, like at his memorial statues, if they were so inspired.

canidmajor's avatar

@elbanditoroso: I have always agreed with your basic premise, that all of these days that commemorate specific people should have the schools open and studying those people and their contributions.

jca's avatar

If people want to honor him, this is one way they could if they have the time:

dxs's avatar

I know, right? I wanted to go today.

Pachy's avatar

I really don’t think closing libraries or schools a few days a year does any harm, and of course the Internet is ALWAYS open.

JLeslie's avatar

Because it didn’t seem fair that only important white guys justify a Federal holiday. You can study about him any day, but you can’t celebrate him, or have a day of rest because of him, if you have to go to work or school. Some towns probably have some sort of commemorative thing going on. I would assume Memphis does (I should know, but I don’t) and where he was from in AL.

We honor people by giving them a holiday. Not all workplaces and schools take it off I don’t think? Do public schools have to follow the federal holidays?

Rarebear's avatar

Because librarians deserve a day off too. And let’s face facts. Most people see this just as a day off. And seriously, how many people are REALLY going to take their day off to go to the library to study about MLK?

imrainmaker's avatar

So that you don’t remember him on a particular day only but for the rest of the year too.

Zaku's avatar

I went to a good school which did both. A day off, and another day during school where there was both a school assembly presentation, and class time talking about MLK, playing some amazing recordings of him giving speeches.

Hearing MLK speak should be given to every child, and adult. His brilliance shames the crap out of almost every modern politician.

msh's avatar

Public libraries. Federal funding. State funding. No banks, mail- Federally affiliated.
Most can plan their own activities.
Grab a newspaper and check out various listings for the day.
You look for your celebration.
Also, you would be stunned at the number of the “bestest” parents, like, ever! who drop their kids off at the library as a means of babysitting for the day. Bless their pointy little heads. School holidays were a nightmare for kid-dumping also.

dxs's avatar

@JLeslie Funny you say that. Which demographic actually has the day off today? I’m beginning to not like this whole “holiday” thing.

JLeslie's avatar

@dxs Probably parts of the country that have more black people. Does that bother you?

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro I like your link. I found all the controversy interesting. I knew about some of it.

I think it’s good having Federal holidays, and I think it’s good they switched a lot of them to Mondays. I think it’s god they are kind of spaced out through the year. It helps promote companies to give a day off. Some industries don’t get the day off obviously.

You wrote that employees may be given holiday pay. I guess that means it’s not required. I don’t remember if I used to get extra pay for Federal holidays.

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