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Why is this day different from all others?   Why is it special?

Labor Day in the United States is a holiday that is celebrated on the first Monday in September. It is a celebration of the American labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of their country.

“The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.”

Labor Day originally was promoted by the Central Labor Union and the Knights of Labor, who organized the first parade in New York City. After the Haymarket Massacre, which occurred in Chicago on May 4, 1886, U.S. President Grover Cleveland feared that commemorating Labor Day on May 1 could become an opportunity to commemorate the affair. Thus, in 1887, it was established as an official holiday in September to support the Labor Day that the Knights favored.

The equivalent holiday in Canada, Labour Day, is also celebrated on the first Monday in September. In many other countries (more than 80 worldwide), “Labour Day” is synonymous with, or linked with, International Workers’ Day, which occurs on May 1st.   Oregon was the first state to make it a holiday on February 21, 1887. By the time it became a federal holiday in 1894, thirty states officially celebrated Labor Day.

Following the deaths of a number of workers at the hands of the U.S. Military and U.S. Marshals during the Pullman Strike, the United States Congress unanimously voted to approve rush legislation that made Labor Day a national holiday; President Grover Cleveland signed it into law a mere six days after the end of the strike. The September date originally chosen by the CLU of New York and observed by many of the nation’s trade unions for the past several years was selected rather than the more widespread International Workers’ Day because Cleveland was concerned that observance of the latter would be associated with the nascent Communist, Syndicalist and Anarchist movements that, though distinct from one another, had rallied to commemorate the Haymarket Affair in International Workers’ Day. All U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the territories have made it a statutory holiday.

The form for the celebration of Labor Day was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday: A street parade to exhibit to the public “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations”, followed by a festival for the workers and their families. This became the pattern for Labor Day celebrations. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the civil significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday proceeding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the Labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has undergone a change in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.

The holiday often marks the return to school, although school starting times now vary.

Today Labor Day is often regarded simply as a day of rest and, compared to the May 1 Labor Day celebrations in most countries, parades, speeches or political demonstrations are more low-key, although especially in election years, events held by labor organizations often feature political themes and appearances by candidates for office.

To take advantage of large numbers of potential customers free to shop, Labor Day has become an important sale weekend for many retailers in the United States. Some retailers claim it is one of the largest sale dates of the year, second only to the Christmas season’s Black Friday.

Ironically, because of the importance of the sale weekend, some of those who are employed in the retail sector not only work on Labor Day, but work longer hours. More Americans work in the retail industry than any other, with retail employment making up 24% of all jobs in the United States. As of 2012, only 3% of those employed in the retail sector were members of a labor union.

In high society, Labor Day is (or was) considered the last day of the year when it is fashionable to wear white or seersucker.

In U.S. sports, Labor Day marks the beginning of the NFL and college football seasons. NCAA teams usually play their first games the weekend of Labor Day, with the NFL traditionally playing their first game the Thursday following Labor Day. The Southern 500 NASCAR auto race was held that day from 1950 to 1983 in Darlington, South Carolina. At the Indianapolis Raceway Park, the National Hot Rod Association holds their finals to the U.S. National drag car race. Labor Day is the middle point between weeks 1 and 2 of the U.S. Tennis Championships that are held in Flushing Meadows, New York.

In the United States, many school districts resume classes around the Labor Day holiday weekend. Most begin the week before, making Labor Day weekend the first three-day weekend of the school calendar, while others return the Tuesday following Labor Day, allowing families one final get away before the school year begins. Many districts across the Midwest are opting to begin school after Labor Day.

When you think about, the kids are headed back to school (in recent years and in many areas, most kids have to return to school before Labor Day, but that’s not how I remember it growing up) the baseball season is coming to a climax and football is about to start. In short, families have come to celebrate Labor Day by going to fairs or parades, having backyard barbecues, going to the beach or on a picnic, and generally doing those things they know will soon be impossible or impractical due to the shortening daylight hours and the ratcheting up of busy schedules.

Like other holidays, if you have a home business and have been nudging your family aside to pursue your dreams, the three-day Labor Day weekend is a chance to reconnect with your loved ones. Maybe you can take a weekend getaway, or maybe you’d prefer to stay closer to home and avoid the traffic and crowds.

Whatever you decide to do, try to take some time out to help get your work and family life back in balance. Three-day weekends don’t come along that often, and we should be thankful that our predecessors and ancestors were determined to make it happen.

Kathy Kiefer




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Why is it important?   Do I really have to like getting an education no matter what age I am? ?   How or why will an education help me as I grow?

Education is empowerment in many ways. It has the power to eradicate ignorance, poverty, and make individuals become independent because of their career choices. In life’s supermarket, we are encouraged to take education seriously because it affords us to be self-reliant.   This is the basic understanding of education. But what is the power of education? Before modern man was able to organize his mind to form various levels of civilizations, he was nurtured by earth. Nature weaned him in the recesses of her caves. His mind was disorganized, and his ways were wild as the beast of the fields. For thousands of years, he was dissatisfied with his condition.

Why are some people well off and others drown in poverty? How does some people seem to get all the breaks and others can get a fair shake? Do you ask yourself these questions? I did for a while until I learn the power of education.

If you can pick up a book, read a website, and learn all that you can about a certain topic, it is the start of changing your circumstances. People are lazy and will do anything to avoid stretching their minds by reading. If it’s not on TV or on the radio they avoid it.  Most people want information spoon-fed to them and will not take steps to work for the information that can change their lives.    Maybe it began in school. Having to read “boring” textbooks and listen to a teacher drone on and on about a topic that you will never have to see again in real life may be the culprit. Or maybe it’s the easy access to television and radio where entertainment is more fun that reading a book. Unfortunately this mindset leaves the individual woefully unprepared for life, and left behind when it comes to good fortune. Instead of getting a great job or starting a business, life is spent slaving away as a grocery store clerk or fast food worker. Jealousy and bitterness sets in against those who have while they have-not. It seems that the haves get all the breaks but that is the case for a very small percentage of people. The rest of the haves get where they are because they take the time to study, read, and work hard to create their ideal life.

Education does not mean you have to go back to school and suffer through theory classes, it simply means you pick up a book and read. It means you take a course that interest you and will help you advance. It means that you become curious about the world and stop waiting for someone to hand it to you.    Everyone has the opportunity to become educated. You may not always get a degree for your labor, but you get something far more valuable; hope. With your education, determination, and ambition you can reach all of your goals. Instead of being a person who whines and complains about what you don’t have, you begin planning a way to get a better job, home, and savings account.

With the internet there are no excuses for not learning and being educated. There are so many free educational resources online that it would take years to go through them all. If you need to learn about finances, how to fix a faucet, or create a website, it’s all there. If you need to learn or brush up on your computer application skills, learn about investing, or how to start a business the tools are available. What about learning how to improve or repair your credit so you can buy a house or car? All that information is available online.

The more you know the more powerful you are to change your world. There is no excuse for not being the best you possible. Now is the time to change your life, regain the power you have given away because you are waiting for someone else to fix things for you, and get what you know you deserve. So what are you waiting for?

Man, the pupil learned the ways of nature. His instincts were impeccable; his understanding of the senses given to him was his only hope for survival. He then understood the power of education. Though nomadic and fickle in thought, he withstood harsh winters and unsteady storms. His resilience was embedded into his identity. His passion to survive marked his identity. Fate and Providence etched into his mind a longing hope to excel higher above all the creatures in the fields.   His mind explored new horizons, forging new paths for generations to come. This is the power of education. For us to survive as a top species; we have to return to the basics of living. We have isolated ourselves and our thoughts from true wisdom. Today’s man depends solely on self-only. It’s not until we are faced with dilemma and calamity, then we realize our true inner potential.

Education will continually be defined and restructured as mankind’s concept of living and life evolves. Generations will continue to reshape paradigms and as they do so education will be re-defined into a new concept.

Proper speech and grammar will expand your horizon in knowing what is being said, or what is being read. The more words you understand, the more meaning you can get from what is being said by anyone. This leads to a snowball effect. As you understand more words and vocabulary, you can then increase your ability to speak. And as you increase your ability to speak, you will then be able to share your knowledge with other people in a more clear and concise manner. You will gain educational power and be able to pass that education on to others.  As your vocabulary expands, you will see the meaning in even very complex writings.

Education will further eliminate guessing in life. The elimination of guessing is an important thing. Here is some reasons why:  (1) You don’t get taken advantage of by crooked business people; (2) You are not deceived; (3) You can better predict the future; (4) You can know when to back off and let someone make a mistake; (5) You can prevent fatal harm to those you care about; and (6) You can better support yourself and/or your family.

And there is so much more! By continuing to increase your education and you will better avoid being blindsided by unexpected and tragic events. Imagine if you knew everything there was to know about building a home. You knew how to check for a good foundation, if the home was sturdy and would last, if there were any potential problems. You would see maybe 10 years down the road that the house you are going to buy is going to crumble because of its weak foundation. Part of educational power is preventative maintenance for not having many of a slew of problems even occur!

Getting an education enhances your life and others around you. To further progress your talents and knowledge to better serve others is a very worthwhile cause. Of course a good reason to get an education is to increase your own power. There is nothing wrong with that. But that is not the whole reason. As you build other people up and gain their respect, you are further benefited as you now have influence with others. And the greater your education, the greater the people you have influence with. This can lead to some very worthwhile and world changing endeavors!

What kind of world changing endeavors you ask? How about some of these: (a) The coordination of D-Day in World War II; (b) The construction of the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River; (c) The creation of the Declaration of Independence; and (d) The first space mission to the moon.       But there are many others that fit here. All these efforts were the immense and collaborative effort of highly educated people. I believe this is just scratching the surface of what human-kind can accomplish if people become educated and work together.

Getting good grades alone is not a worthwhile cause. Getting good grades with the proper educational instruction is. This kind of instruction requires educating those who are growing up in elementary, middle, and high school in a way that helps them discover their purpose in life, allowing a broad education, and focusing on the individual talents and interests of the individual. It would have loved to learn about the internet when I was in school. Or how to make a simple web page. At that time nobody had a clue or knew anything about it!  Now it is much more accessible.

Getting good grades alone is a flawed system of learning. It says that if someone has a good memory and just puts in hours and hours of work, then that is how you get rewarded in life. Wow, does that just miss the mark or what! It leads people to mindlessly think that being a doctor or a nurse or spending thousands upon thousands of dollars on a profession they think will pay well is what should be done. It causes problems by taking away proper reasoning in people. In some cases, sure, go get a PhD and become a doctor – go for it! But only if it is your passion and where your talents lie. A proper education is a lifelong learning process that brings one to do what is best for themselves and others.

Homework alone is mind numbing, and provides minimal excitement or purpose.  Oh the drudgery of doing math problems over and over. You are told that your grade will depend on how many you get right.   I see no reason for mindless homework, in any area. Mindless homework doesn’t help bring out the individual, as it is a way to keep them busy. Of course, this is not the case in all situations. There are some very dedicated teachers out there – I believe the system in general is flawed and old fashioned in many places.

Many resources are available online. Let me rephrase that. There are millions of resources available on the internet that will help increase your education.    I believe in self-improvement for youngsters all the way up to the grandma who has a hard time finding the on switch to her computer.    Not only that, there are many online courses and excerpts available to look at. I would encourage the visitation of online websites and the judgment of those viewing the websites to draw their own conclusions about whether the site being visited is worthwhile.

Continuing education is important. Each and every day, learning and understanding new things, or increasing your understanding of existing things will help you understand and predict situations more completely. Continuing education is accomplished by using the best resources out there and also by using your brain. Going to college at a university is a great way to continue your education. But more than that going to the university for the right reason, with the right purpose will further cement the gains received by going. Read the best books available about the subjects you are learning about. Do not be afraid to ask questions.

Don’t be afraid to say you don’t know when you don’t know.  I am not afraid to learn and speak what I do know, and learn more about things that I know very little about. I am very excited to keep on learning, improving and becoming an all-around better person and I know it is something in today’s world that many people could do as well.


Kathy Kiefer


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College graduates



With the school year upon us and students ready to return to the classroom it is understandable why they (or their parents/guardians) may be a little apprehensive about the new school year.   Whether it is a new school or college, everyone has a new classroom to enter, a new teacher to meet as well as new friends and other friends to get reacquainted with.   So the importance of education cannot be stated enough. It is a self-enlightening process. It is crucial to the overall development of an individual and the society at large.  What would you do if you weren’t allowed to go to school and get an education?   For starters, you wouldn’t be able to read or write.   Possibly have to work for minimum wage at a factory and be less than thrilled with that.   The big thing would be that if you had children you’d be unable to work with your child/children on counting, reading, writing or any sort of skill that you may never had the opportunity to learn yourself.

The biggest part of growing up is making the right choices that will benefit you in the future. The idea is to get an education so that you can choose a career, have hopes and dreams, set and reach your goals.   Education is so powerful because without it, early civilizations would have struggled to survive and thrive as a culture.   It is important that adults trained the young of their society in the knowledge and skills they would need to master and pass on to future generations.

The evolution of culture and human beings as a species depended on the practice of knowledge. When cultures began to extend their knowledge beyond the basic skills of communicating, trading, gathering food, religious practices, and so forth, formal education and schooling eventually followed.

The Right to Education is a fundamental human right.   It occupies a central place in Human Rights and is essential and indispensable for the exercise of all other human rights and for development.   As an empowerment right, education is the primary vehicle by which economically and socially marginalized adults and children can lift themselves out of poverty, and obtain the means to participate fully in their communities.   None of the civil, political, economic and social rights can be exercised by individual unless they received a minimum education.

The first time we are introduced to formal education is in school. The school years are the grounding years of one’s education. Schools are institutions that lay the foundation of a child’s development. They play a key role in developing children into responsible citizens and good human beings. It’s a school where young talent is recognized and nurtured. On leaving school, we are all set to soar high in life, and enter the real world in pursuit of our dreams.

Education provides us with knowledge about the world. It paves the way for a good career. It helps build character. It leads to enlightenment. It lays the foundation of a stronger nation. Education makes a man complete.  Education enriches people’s understanding of themselves. He has said that education is an investment in human capital, and it can have a great impact on a nation’s growth and development.

So, Why is Education Important?

It Gives Knowledge

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – A direct effect of education is knowledge gain. Education gives us knowledge of the world around. It develops in us a perspective of looking at life. It helps us form opinions and develop a point of view. The information we are constantly bombarded with, cannot be converted into knowledge without the catalyst called education. Education makes us capable of interpreting things rightly and applying the gathered information in real life scenarios. Education is not limited to lessons from textbooks. Real education is obtained from the lessons taught by life.

It Leads to Career Progression

“An expert is one who knows more and more about less and less.” – Education is important because it equips us with the expertise that is needed in helping us realize our career goals. Expertise is an in-depth knowledge about a specific field and it’s apt to open doors to brilliant career opportunities. Education fetches better prospects of career growth. Good education is an eligibility criterion for employment in any sector of the industry. Be it any field, education always proves to be rewarding. We are weighed in the market on the basis of our educational skills and on how well we can apply them.

It Builds Character

“A man’s own manner and character is what most becomes him.” – The words ‘cultivate’ and ‘civilize’ are synonymous with ‘educate’. That says it all. Education is important as it teaches us the right behavior and good manners, thus making us civilized. It is the basis of culture and civilization. It is instrumental in the development of our values and virtues. Education cultivates us into mature individuals; individuals capable of planning for the future, and taking the right decisions in life. It gives us an insight into living, and teaches us to learn from experience. It makes us self-confident, and develops our abilities to think, analyze, and judge. It fosters principles of equality and socialism. It forms a support system for one to excel in life. It is the backbone of society. It won’t be wrong to say that good education makes us more human.

It Leads to Enlightenment

“Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” – Education paves the path to disillusionment. It wipes out the wrong beliefs from our minds. It helps create a clear picture of things around, and erases all the confusion. It kindles the flame of curiosity and helps awaken the abilities to question, and to reason. The more we learn, the more questions we have, and without questions, there are no answers. Education teaches us to find answers. It makes us more self-aware. It leads us to enlightenment.

It Helps a Nation Progress

“Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education. The human mind is our fundamental resource.” – Though not enlisted as one of the three basic human needs, education is equally important. For the progress of a nation, for the enrichment of society in general, education is important. A country’s literate population is its asset. In today’s competitive world, it won’t be wise to neglect the importance of education for the development of society as a whole. Most countries have realized this. It has led to the development of many government-aided educational programs and government grants to schools and colleges. The motive behind this is fostering education in society. The future of a nation is safe in the hands of the educated. Education is important for the social development and economic growth of a nation.

Schools and other educational institutes define the basic framework of education. Schooling gives us the fundamentals. We specialize in fields of our interest during degree courses. The number of institutes offering vocational courses and those offering online education is increasing by the day. Vocational courses help earn specialized education. Online degree programs help the working class and adults pursue education even while continuing work. Distance education has proven to be of great help for many. But education is not limited to that obtained from educational institutes. Learning is a lifelong process. Rather, self-learning begins at a point where institutional education ends. The process of self-learning continues throughout one’s life.


In summary, I think and believe that education is an important and very valuable tool, because without learning, the world would function poorly.   I still get an education to this day, in part because I desire happiness, a brighter future, financial security and knowledge (and growth).   Don’t let anyone tell you that an education isn’t important in your life or for your future. Because you’d be selling yourself short if you do.

Kathy Kiefer