Last Thursday, government services shut down, many businesses closed and the nation paused to remember the service and sacrifice of our armed forces. But on this Veterans Day, like every Veterans Day in recent memory, Brandeis was in full session. This university claims to be a nonsectarian institution, but when it comes to the academic calendar, we are hardly secular here. In fact, of all the major national holidays that occur during the academic year, only one-Martin Luther King Jr. Day-is observed.Non-Jewish students often feel overwhelmed, perhaps even intimidated, by the deference given to the Jewish calendar. The University should never forget its reason for existence, but part of being a secular institution is observing a secular calendar. And of all the national holidays, one that pays tribute to America's honored dead should not be forgotten.

Even though many people who have the day off on Veterans Day likely take the day for their own relaxation instead of remembering the sacrifices made for this country, the holiday is still observed. It should be observed at Brandeis, too, and there should be some formal mention of the significance of the holiday. A campus speaker, an all-campus e-mail, something to remind people even if they don't like the reasons our brave soldiers fight, that freedom has a price.