Saint Xavier University has canceled classes on Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr’s National Holiday. For years professors tried to get some type of formal acknowledgement of this holiday from the university. Finally the administration of President Judith Dwyer had the courage and the decency to allow the SXU community an opportunity to appropriately pay tribute to this greatest of American figures.
I teach African-American History and whenever that class would be scheduled on Dr King’s Holiday, I would cancel class out of respect to him and my students. Now the university officially embraces the significance of this day. This is essential as the university must continue to move toward greater diversity among the faculty, greater respect for non-conformity in terms of speech and behaviour and a commitment to progressive values that lead us to peace and freedom and justice. I praise the university and urge its growth and continued development.
I have a picture of Dr King on my website and in all my classes. There is a picture of him, holding a son in his lap, superimposed with his “I Have A Dream” speech of August 1963 at the March on Washington.
Dr King received his Ph.D. from Boston University. I received my A.B. from Boston University. His doctorate was in theology; mine was in government.