EDITORIAL: Eastern needs more holiday inclusivity


Editorial Board

You may have noticed the big holiday event in the Doudna Fine Arts center this weekend. Along with the 15+ foot tree in the concourse, there were some sprinklings of Hanukah and Kwanzaa decorations in some places.  

Unfortunately, the size and amount of Christmas decorations overpowered the rest, making those other religions’ and cultures’ holidays look like an afterthought.

Western culture has moved to a more mainstream version of Christmas, but it is assumed that most people celebrate this holiday. 

With a campus that had a 91.98% increase in international students, one would think that some other holidays would get more representation rather than just a table with a few token pieces from the holiday. 

When you walk through Old Main or Blair Hall, Christmas decorations are spread out across hallways and lobbies.

Besides the effort from Doudna, there is no large presence of other holidays on campus. People from around the world come to Eastern, why should we not celebrate their holidays too?

We have celebrated many events like Holi, Global Cultural Night, and Chinese New Year in the past, so why not extend a little more resources to celebrate others?

Should Eastern not feel like a home away from home? It would be hard when you are surrounded by holiday decorations and activities that do not represent the holiday you celebrate.

University Board held an event last Thursday called “decorate your holiday,” which allowed a space for students to share and celebrate their holidays that might not be celebrated on campus.

Even if it was more educational events, students should be more aware that not everyone celebrates the mainstream holiday.

Although it may be hard when it is all you hear on the radio and TV, those who celebrate differently should speak up.

There are people like the editorial board at The News who would love to learn more about diverse holidays and their traditions.

We at The News call upon organizations to promote more diverse holiday events. We also would like to see the university represent different cultures in its decorations and celebrations.

We know our town and university aren’t as diverse as some others, but we believe that is even more reason to highlight the diversity we do have. Eastern is this area’s window to the outside world; we should keep that window open to education.

Christianity has been the dominant religion in the U.S. for so long that it may take a little extra effort to see the presence of other religions.

We’re not saying Christmas needs to go away or that it shouldn’t be celebrated. Many of our staff celebrate it, whether for religious reasons or just as part of family traditions. There’s plenty of Christmas-related imagery in this week’s print edition of the News.

We’re just hoping that our university where we come to learn about the world can teach us about every aspect, not just what’s culturally dominant in our country.


The Editorial Board can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]