Did you know today is a holiday? No, I’m not talking about the fourth anniversary of “Mission Accomplished” or May Day (Do Americans even recognize it anymore?). Today is Loyalty Day :
The holiday was first observed in 1921 as “Americanization Day,” and was intended to counterbalance the celebration of the Labour Day on May Day — May 1, which was perceived as communist.
Loyalty Day is celebrated with parades and ceremonies in communities across the United States, although many people in the United States remain unaware of it. Although a legal holiday, it is not a federal holiday.
It was made an official holiday by the U.S. Congress on July 18, 1958 (Public Law 85-529). Following the passage of this law, President Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1959 the first official observance of Loyalty Day.
As you could probably guess, the President (who could use some loyalty these days) has issued an official proclamation to celebrate Loyalty Day.
If that weren’t enough, there’s another holiday today. Started by Eisenhower and signed into law in 1961, today is Law Day as well. From Ike’s proclamation :
WHEREAS it is fitting that the people of this Nation should remember with pride and vigilantly guard the great heritage of liberty, justice and equality under law which our forefathers bequeathed to us; and
WHEREAS it is our moral and civic obligation as free men and as Americans to preserve and strengthen that great heritage; and
WHEREAS the principle of guaranteed fundamental rights of individuals under the law is the heart and sinew of our Nation, and distinguishes our governmental system from the type of government that rules by might alone; and
WHEREAS our government has served as an inspiration and a beacon light for oppressed peoples of the World seeking freedom, justice and equality of the individual under law; and
WHEREAS universal application of the principles of the rule of law in the settlement of international disputes would greatly enhance the cause of a just and enduring peace; and
WHEREAS a day of national dedication to the principle of government under law would afford us an opportunity better to understand and appreciate the manifold virtues of such a government and to focus the attention of the World upon them;
Hypocritically enough, the President is celebrating Law Day as well, with the invocation that “opportunity to celebrate the Constitution and the laws that protect our rights and liberties”. It’s hard to tell from the transcript whether or not the President’s remarks were accompanied by a laugh track.