April 13 is founding father Thomas Jefferson's birthday, and Google really wanted the world to know. GCal users were confused, amused, and some a bit upset by the company's insistent reminder of the third president's 273rd birthday. Why is Thomas Jefferson's birthday on your Google calendar? It's technically an observance day by the U.S. government in honor of the late president's birthday, so it shows up in your holidays calendar.
Jefferson's gotten a little more notoriety than usual recently due to the Broadway hit Hamilton , the musical about the life of fellow founding father and fervent Jefferson foe Alexander Hamilton. Played by rapper Daveed Diggs, Jefferson's seedier side comes to light in the show, including his battle with Hamilton, an abolitionist, to keep the slavery system in America. The exposure has undoubtedly turned the reaction to Jefferson's birthday a little sourer than it would have been without the musical. But an honest understanding of history is definitely more important than maintaining an unrealistic image of a historical figure — especially one so central to the founding of the country.
For some, the notification was a painful reminder of a man whose sins were overlooked for far too long. For others, Jefferson’s legacy is still intact, and Wednesday will be a cause for celebration. For everyone else who is fairly indifferent, at least you know how the notification got there now. Here are some tweets you can sympathize with, no matter which category you fall into.
Don't Love It
Jefferson might be even more divisive in his death than he was during his lifetime, but he'd probably be happy to still be a topic of conversation.