As a child of generation Y I am well aware that traditions have fallen to commercialism, but this year I say too far! With Thanksgiving fast approaching I have been preparing my house with typical turkey day festivities, but everyone’s status on Facebook is about getting ready for Christmas. Despite my own confusion I continued to focus on the closet holiday, in which my family would be gathered together at last. Television commercials, seemed to only be about Christmas, and not to mention (to my horror) many big retail stores were going to be open on Thanksgiving. For some reason the loss of Thanksgiving, really began to upset me not because it’s some sacred holiday, where we should all stop to give thanks for football and giant balloons shaped like woody woodpecker.Not because I was angry that people were over emphasizing Christmas, everyone is allowed their favorite tradition, but simply because Christmas along with Thanksgiving has lost all sincerity in general.
I decided to look into the matter and see if anyone else was feeling slighted in some way. As I began my search one obvious thing was brought to my attention. With the calendar differentiation this year the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is six days shorter. Clearly people can’t shop for the holidays and time before Thanksgiving. There were 16 major retailers that were advertising sales for Thanksgiving day sales, says Kevin Short of the Huffington Post. Luckily I wasn’t the only one that was feeling this way. Kareem Gantt of the Examiner says, “Tragic Thursday is what I now refer Thanksgiving, as a new and disturbing trend has now grabbed hold of traditional values: opening retail stores on Thanksgiving.” People seemed to sacrificing so much just for the perfect deal and it made me consider, why? I developed my own theory and solution to this holiday debacle.
With the economy and unemployment still not doing well, America prepares for another holiday season of scraping by for some. The deals offered in these huge sales give people trying to make their dollar stretch, an opportunity to get their kid that new toy, or popular tech device so they can keep up with their friends, (whose parents are probably struggling in the same way). Commercialism has forced us to believe that Christmas can no longer be modest, and the amount of love we have for one another is measured in the amount of gifts under the tree. This idea is bigger than losing the spirit of the holidays, but about teaching young children the wrong way to show affection and gratitude.
This year I ask people to remember, what made these once special holidays so important to us, what did they teach us growing up, and ultimately what is it we really want to pass on? The only time this season you should be focused on quantity, it’s when you’re considering family time, or cookies.
Short, K. (2013, Nov. 11). Huffington Post. Here’s a List of Stores that Will Open on Thanksgiving. Retrieved from: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/11/open-on-thanksgiving-2013_n_4254974.html
Gantt, K. (2013, Nov. 13), Examiner. Killing Thanksgiving to Make a Buck. Retrieved from: http://www.examiner.com/article/kareem-s-random-thought-killing-thanksgiving-over-a-buck