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Is the Pilla Freedom Calendar Racist & Sexist?
Is the Pilla Freedom Calendar a White Man's Freedom Calendar?

These questions must be asked for the following reasons:

1. Although referencing all other national holidays, the Pilla Freedom Calendar excludes mention of the Martin Luther King, Jr. national holiday, which is not only a federal holiday but also a holiday in all 50 states.  Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK), of course, led the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s, resulting in the passage of laws which allowed black Americans to attain greater economic, political and social freedom in the United States and freed all Americans from the ignominy of the legal racism that was prevalent for so long in our country.

2. The Pilla Freedom Calendar includes reference to the birthday of Robert E. Lee (REL), who led an army to keep black American enslaved. (The REL birthday is a holiday only in a few Southern states.)

3. Although referencing the anniversary dates of many relatively minor events (e.g., the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge, the first linotype), the Pilla Freedom Calendar excludes reference to many anniversary dates important to the freedom of blacks and women in United States.  These anniversary dates include:

The Emanipation Proclamation, which granted freedom to blacks in the Confederate states
The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited slavery
The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which granted equal protection of the laws to blacks and all Americans
The 15th  Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited racial discrimination in voting
The 19th  Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited gender discrimination in voting
The Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited racial, gender and ethnic origin discrimination in employment and public accommodations
The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, which assured women the freedom to decide whether to give birth

4. In addition to excluding the MLK national holiday, the Pilla Freedom Calendar makes no reference to the birth dates of persons important to the freedom of American blacks and women.  These omissions include Frederick Douglas, Harriet Tubman, Susan B. Anthony.

Dan Pilla, Sr., the publisher of the so-called Freedom Calendar, stated that the MLK holiday is excluded from his calendar because "we DON'T honor a known Communist." At his request, the author of this website responded to Mr. Pilla's charge in a white paper titled: "Why the Freedom Calendar is Wrong to Exclude the MLK Holiday." This white paper clearly refuted the Communist charge against MLK, as well as certain other implied charges by Mr. Pilla. (This white paper may be opened by clicking here.**) Although inviting a response to his charges against MLK, Mr. Pilla has become mute since receiving the white paper, and has declined to respond, albeit indicating he intends no changes in his calendar.

Since the white paper established that the communist charge by Mr. Pilla is false and Mr. Pilla's refusal to respond to the white paper indicates he realizes that his charge is indefensible, the question arises whether Mr. Pilla has some ulterior, discriminatory motive in refusing to give appropriate recognition to the MLK national holiday and the important freedom anniversary dates for blacks and women in American history. The author of this website confronted Mr. Pilla with this question in a letter dated June 14, 2006, which was sent to him with the white paper. (This letter can be opened by clicking here.) As with the white paper, however, Mr. Pilla refused to reply to this letter.

Given the foregoing circumstances, the questions asked at the top of this website are posed: Is the so-called Freedom Calendar racist and sexist? Is it a white man's calendar? My opinion is that the answer to both ques-tions must be in the affirmative because (1) the exclusion of the MLK national holiday is based on a false charge, (2) the exclusion of important "freedom" dates for American blacks and women in the Pilla Freedom Calendar is unjustifiably discriminatory, and (3) Mr. Pilla now fails to defend his position on these issues.

The Pilla Freedom Calendar purports to be an educational calendar on the Bill of Rights, but it excludes the rights of American blacks and women. Consequently, it is teaching the type of discrimination that it took a civil war, a sufferage movement, a civil rights movement, and hundreds of years toil, sweat and blood to eradicate. In other words, Mr. Pilla would have our country move far backward in teaching on freedom and tolerance.

Any calendar sold in the United States and nominating itself as the "Freedom Calendar" should celebrate the freedoms of all Americans because all Americans, in their great diversity, have contributed to its greatness. If Mr. Pilla would like to call his calendar the "White Man's Freedom Calendar," I would have no objection. However, this is not the road he choses. To refuse to recognize the freedoms of all Americans in the "Freedom Calendar" and exclude the national holiday of a man who was a martyr for the freedom of black Americans is not only repugnant, it is unAmerican. The MLK holiday was overwhelmingly instituted by the U. S. Congress, signed into law by President Reagan, and is now honored in all 50 states, including in the formerly segregationist states. In view of all the foregoing circumstances, the readers of this website, at least those who value the significant contributions to American society by MLK in particular, and of blacks and women in general, are respectfully requested to withhold their purchases of Mr. Pilla's so-called Freedom Calendar and urge others to do likewise.
**The enclosures referenced in the white paper may be made available upon request.