Piper is puerile; Pulaski rocks!


After reading Matthew Piper’s latest “column” (“Where are all the happy holidays?” Oct. 2), here’s a more grownup perspective on a few things.

For my 11 years in an Illinois public-school system, I got one day off a year for Pulaski Day. No, Pulaski never visited Illinois-he died 39 years before Illinois even became a state. Several states have some form of Pulaski Day-including Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin and Kentucky.?These are all states which received large numbers of Polish immigrants. For instance-Chicago is the largest Polish city outside of Poland, which would seem to have much to do with Pulaski Day being an Illinois state holiday.

Is it observed ignorantly? Certainly not. We were taught in school that Pulaski played an important role in the revolution (he is called “father of the American cavalry”).

As far as Pioneer Day goes, I think most anybody with a reasonable view of history would call anyone who went across thousands of miles of wilderness in a covered wagon to try to make it in a virtually unsettled area a legitimate “pioneer”-their having been chased the whole way, notwithstanding.

But having read your whole column, I’m not sure that it was anything other than an excuse to repeatedly make rather adolescent remarks about public sex.?This kind of humor would go fairly well with the 12-year-olds I used to teach outside of Detroit, but at a university, I think I’m right to expect something a bit less puerile.?

Chris Schwartz?Graduate student,?Meteorology