Why Don’t We Celebrate Presidents’ Day Anymore?

WASHINGTON–On Monday, February 15, most Americans will not celebrate Presidents’ Day–nor even notice it. What was once a proud celebration of America’s first president is now barely recognized as a holiday at all. 

“The fact that George Washington’s birthday was established as a federal holiday is a testament to how highly regarded Washington was,” says Yaron Brook, president of the Ayn Rand Center. “Washington was a hero of epic proportions–above all because he was a man of principle. Offered the prospect of tremendous political power, he rejected it in unwavering devotion to the ideals of individual rights and limited government.

“The only thing modern politicians are unwavering in is their effort to increase government authority. Far from refusing power, recent presidents have relentlessly sought to expand Washington’s grip on our lives and our wallets. Is it any wonder, then, why no one celebrates Presidents’ Day?

“If our leaders are to be worthy of celebration, they will have to follow Washington’s example: fight intransigently for the Declaration’s ideals of individual rights and limited government.”

Yaron Brook is president of the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights. He is a contributing editor of “The Objective Standard” and his articles have been featured in major publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Forbes.com, USA Today, the Houston Chronicle, Chicago Sun-Times, Providence Journal and the Orange County Register. Dr. Brook is often interviewed on radio and is a frequent guest on a variety of national TV shows, having appeared on Fox Business Network, Fox News Channel, CNN, CNBC, and C-SPAN. Dr. Brook, a former finance professor, lectures on Objectivism, capitalism, business and foreign policy at college campuses, community groups and corporations across America and throughout the world.