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Don’t change Days of ’47

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The decision to "diversify" the focus of the Days of '47 parade and celebration raises concern. Overall, we are mature enough to allow both the diverse and dominant groups among us their individual celebrations without having to make these events about us. By appealing to more global concepts of "pioneers," we lose the unique flavor of this historical day and, in my opinion, disrespect the specific sacrifices of a single group of settlers that made a Herculean effort to help this city become a rose in the desert.

Wouldn't it be regrettable if, in the name of increasing participation from our Mexican neighbors and increasing profits, we shifted the July 4th celebration to May 5 and called it "World Independence Day," where all people could gather to celebrate any liberation movement or ideology of their choosing?

Something is surely lost when we celebrate our individual self-interests at the expense of certain individuals whose accomplishments are worthy of a stand-alone moment and the adoration of an entire community. This is egocentrism, the same that prefers "Human Rights Day" to Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in January. Dr. King deserves his day. The Mormon pioneers deserve their day. We have enough celebrations of our diversity in Utah that we don't need to alter or overlap them for inclusion's sake.

Jim Birrell

Lehi