The March Madness college basketball tournaments begin this week. Both the men’s and women’s tournaments continue through the end of March, culminating with the NCAA Women’s and Men’s National Championship games. In recent years, the inequitable facilities and promotion of the two tournaments have drawn criticism. Both men and women athletes have also benefited in recent years from the reversal of prohibitions on financial compensation, with collegiate athletes now able to sign name, image, and likeness endorsements (NIL). Cite the values of voice and equity when talking in support of paying student-athletes.
Today is Super Bowl Sunday. While the big game is best known for entertaining commercials and snack spreads, the media event surrounding it has also created opportunities for cultural strategies, from Beyoncé’s iconic halftime show to activism for NFL teams to drop offensive and disparaging Native American mascots. Cite the values of voice and equity.
Today we also celebrate the birthday and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Technically born on Jan. 15, this federal holiday is recognized on the third Monday each year and presents a great opportunity to talk about the ongoing struggle for racial justice in the United States by citing the values of equity, community, and opportunity.
Today is also World AIDS Day, an annual event on held on Dec. 1 to show support for those living with AIDS and to honor those who have died from AIDS-related illness.
On this day in 1969, the Supreme Court ruled in the case of Alexander v. Holmes County Board of Education that schools in the South had to desegregate “immediately,” instead of the previous ruling of “with all deliberate speed.” The case was brought by Beatrice Alexander, on behalf of her children, after she sued the Holmes County, Mississippi School District. At its core, today’s attacks on critical race theory promote dishonesty about our nation’s history. Use this anniversary to acknowledge the ongoing work of racial equity in our schools and communities. Cite the values of Voice, Equality, and Mobility.
Today is also Citizenship Day, the anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787. This is also known as Citizenship Week. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services encourages us to use this week to “reflect on the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and what it means to be a U.S. citizen.” It’s a good time to remind your audiences of our deeply held values around citizenship like Community and Voice.
Also on this day during the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech. Use this anniversary to remind your audiences about the importance of reaffirming our values and our commitment to winning liberation. Cite the values of community, voice, and equity.
On this day in 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) began to be implemented. Judicial threats to DACA add urgency for federal legislators to create a pathway to citizenship for not only DACA recipients, but also their families and all immigrants who lack documentation in the United States. Refer to the values of community, voice, and economic opportunity when discussing this news hook.
On this day in 1982, the Supreme Court ruled in the case of Plyler v. Doe that states could not deny public education to students who were not legally admitted into the country. Doing so, they said, violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. Since the ruling only applied to K-12 students, other court cases and legislation made it possible for some states to deny undocumented students access to in-state tuition, scholarships, or enrollment at public colleges and universities. Cite the values of voice, equity, and community on this date.
Today is the anniversary of President Trump’s “Muslim Ban” executive order which barred the entry of nationals and refugees from 11 Muslim-majority nations. The Supreme Court later upheld a similar, updated ban. The Biden administration rescinded the policy as one of its first executive actions following the inauguration, but the date reminds us of our ongoing work to counter xenophobia and replace it with policies and narratives to welcome immigrants and refugees. When discussing this anniversary, cite the values of Voice, Community, and Economic Security.