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1/21/2008

Nation Celebrates MLK Day by Returning Unwanted Christmas Gifts

By Billy Pilgrim, National Nitwit Rogue Editor

We Shall Overcome…the Customer Service Line at Macy’s


(Washington, D.C.)—Rather than watching a History Channel special on Civil Rights, or viewing the famed “I Have a Dream Speech” on YouTube, millions of Americans spent the federal holiday in honor of Dr. King returning unwanted Christmas presents and redeeming gift cards.

“I woke up around ten this morning, still pissy that the Packers lost and totally bummed that the only real holiday on the horizon is St. Patty’s Day, which might as well be in August,” huffed a frustrated Rick Mulligan, a D.C.-area paralegal. “So I brewed a strong pot of coffee and plan to waste the afternoon returning half the Christmas clothes I bought for my wife. Don’t get me wrong—I love Dr. King—but this shit is barely a step above Arbor Day, except the mailman doesn’t come.”

Even for members of the African-American community, today seemed less about celebrating the life of a cherished leader and more about running errands.

“You don’t need to tell ME what today is about,” remarked a vocal LeShonda Williams, local dental hygienist and single mother of two. “Today is about freedom, and hope, and about remembering what we done been through as a people. It’s also about exchanging this broke-ass PSP I bought for my son, since they only give you 30 days for that shit and I don’t get no hour-long lunch break during the week.”

Dr. Evan Kessler, professor of sociology at Georgetown University, offered these sobering thoughts on public indifference.

“While racism is still a rampant concern in America, many of us are too consumed with our daily lives to stop and take national inventory, which was the guiding impetus behind this holiday,” Dr. Kessler explained. “Many just view today as a freebie, spend it willy-nilly, and later watch an hour of PBS after dinner to assuage our sense of obligation. Now if you’ll excuse me, I must be going—I need to exchange this cardigan at The Gap, and I’m sure the return line is a motherfucker.”

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