29 September 2008

New York City and Eid

Multiculturalism and racism or bigotry go hand-in-hand in the sense that many oversimplify these terms to be opposite sides of the same coin. This is to say, if you do not support multiculturalism or a more plural society then you are racist or a bigot and conversely if you have racist or bigoted tendencies you cannot support multiculturalism. Sometimes I wonder whether the equation is quite as simple as that.

Nevertheless, the Big Apple or perhaps the Big Melting Pot that is New York City is soon to vote on whether two Muslim holidays are to be declared school holidays for all. The two holidays are Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha which celebrate the end of the fasting month and the Haj pilgrimage month respectively. The vote is to take place on 16 October 2008.

This is something that has been on the agenda since 2005 and it seems that the supporters of the vote have finally mustered the numbers to take the issue to committee and then get it through to a full council vote.

The measure was initiated by a Muslim councilor from Harlem, Robert Jackson. However, it is claimed that the measure has broad support within the community and also on the council and this support is from non-Muslims as well. Broad-based support is no guarantee that it will get up when it comes to a vote.

I wonder though whether this sets a precedent that every religion should be able to lobby for its special days to be legislatively declared holidays and then have them so declared. I am happy for governments to declare as many religious holidays that they want. Simply, the more they declare the less number of days I have to work while still getting paid.

The population of NYC is approximately 7 million and of these 1 million are Muslims.

6 comments:

oigal said...

Of course, the correct answer is there should be no Religious holidays, basing time off on other peoples imaginary friends and beliefs is by default discrimatory as there ain't enough days to cater for them all.

Let's not forget that the percentage of New York Muslim (as quoted by you) makes it about the same % of Australians who declared themselves as follows of the "THE FORCE" and or Jeddi Knights in the last Census..so logically...

Rob Baiton said...

Stump...

This is the point!

When you reach a certain number of followers or a percentage of the population do you then get a recognized holiday and day off?

Katadia said...

No religious holidays? I think everyone will go beserk if we took Christmas break and Easter long weekend off the calendar. Everyone. Including the Jedi's! ;)
In contrast, we definetely should still have a day off and celebrate Her Majesty's birthday. :D

The best place to work right now is the Indonesian embassy. They get both Indonesian and Australian holidays. Aaaaaaargh!

Rob Baiton said...

KD...

Or the Australian Embassy in Jakarta :D

I am not complaining because I get days off for just about all the religious and significant national days while living here.

It is unusual to have a month go by without an extra day off.

I just wonder where you draw the line.

Polar Bear said...

And people wonder why many in the world worry about “Islamification”…

Surely you just give people a bucket of days off. Pick them how you like. Tack them onto your annuals, take off Christmas day, Hitler’s birthday, whatever you want…

Anyway holidays are for wimps. As someone once said “You only need two holidays in life, one for your first wedding and one for the divorce”.

Rob Baiton said...

PB...

Not really. I do not wonder about why people are worried.

I have been investigating through some targeted Internet surfing and blog-walking. I have learned much over the last several days.

Now there is an idea, a bucket of days off and you can take them as you like.

Gotta say have not heard the one about needing just two days off. So, in other words you really need to get divorced in order to maximize your days off.