Fightin’ Words: Is Christmas arriving too early?

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Katie Fenton, Online Reporter

After an excruciatingly long 311 days, the time finally came.

Nov. 1 marked the beginning of holiday festivities destined to last another two months. Yes, the end of Halloween means more than just being hungover.

It’s now socially acceptable to bring out the Christmas cheer and decorations, but some people would beg to differ. They argue that Christmas overshadows Thanksgiving, an important holiday dedicated to being grateful and spending time with loved ones.

Except that’s not the problem. Of the world’s 196 countries, only two of them celebrate Thanksgiving: Canada and the United States. The United States celebrates Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November, whereas the Canadian holiday is observed on the second Monday of October.

That means the rest of the world is free to watch A Christmas Story and listen to All I Want For Christmas Is You on repeat while Americans are stuck watching college football and pretending to enjoy butternut squash for a whole month.

Unlike Thanksgiving, Americans worship Christmas. People spend over two months celebrating the holiday that really could be limited to two days.

Throughout winter, TV channels dedicate the airwaves to nonstop Christmas movies while department stores feature holiday sales every other day. People even decorate their houses with lights that flash in synchronization with Christmas music.

Why should Christmas be delayed when it’s the only time of year people actually look forward to? Everyone likes having a reason to forget about their miserable lives, and the Christmas experience is so immersive.

The rest of the year is just day-in, day-out. There’s no cheerful music, colorful decorations or gingerbread houses to make everything better. Instead, people worry about their GPAs and whether the rent got paid on time.

Everything about Christmas, from wrapping gifts to drinking peppermint hot cocoa, is intoxicating. People should enjoy themselves for as long as possible before trading in their ugly holiday sweaters for work uniforms.

Those who are against Christmas cheer usually claim that the holiday revolves around presents, but couldn’t this be beneficial to the economy?

According to a 2014 CNBC article, the average American planned to spend $765 on Christmas. In 2009, about 27,400 students were enrolled at Pierce College. If each student represented one household that spent $765 on Christmas, the college alone would produce nearly $21 million.

This money could be used for better things, but it’s still going toward the overall economy.

Plus, Thanksgiving just isn’t what it used to be. The holiday is all about being thankful, yet Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals have twisted the special day into something horrible. Yes, the same thing could be said for Christmas; but Christmas does somewhat revolve around gifts. So why does it matter if we celebrate Christmas early when people are already fighting over PlayStations and coffee makers a month earlier?

The spirit of Christmas can be obnoxious to those who dislike the holiday. It can even get annoying to people who simply want to spend more time celebrating Thanksgiving. Christmas is a special holiday that’s not all about greed.

Of course everyone enjoys the presents. People would be lying to themselves if they said they truly didn’t enjoy getting spoiled every now and then; but Christmas celebrates family, too.

As a child, my family would go all-out for Christmas. It was the one time of the year when everyone could get together and enjoy themselves. My dad would come home from his deployment in Iraq and my cousins would drive from Las Vegas to Puyallup for a weekend of Christmas fun.

Sitting at the dinner table with all of my aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents was an uncomplicated joy. What’s so wrong with wanting to celebrate early?

So please, pass me the eggnog. Christmas truly is the most wonderful time of the year.


 

Amber new mugAmber GillilandSenior Reporter

‘Twas the night before Halloween and all through the mall, Christmas decorations were strung through the halls.

This sight is becoming more common as Christmas seems to be coming earlier every year.

Retailers need to relax and slow down the premature Christmas decorating.

I’m sure I sound like a real Grinch, but don’t get me wrong. I love Christmas…in December; but trying to find Halloween decorations during October and only finding Christmas decorations is frustrating.

Going to a store in the mall during the second week of October, all one could find was Christmas merchandise. The Halloween section was already being phased out. Halloween hadn’t even happened yet and they were getting ready for Christmas.

Christmas isn’t necessarily the problem. What’s frustrating is that stores are pushing it down people’s throats earlier every year so they can make a profit.

If a store puts out items at the end of October, a person then has two months to buy items instead of one. People feel the need to start buying because “the countdown to Christmas is on.” The longer a person has to buy something, they’re likely to spend more money, since they’ve had longer to save up money or buy more items throughout the two months.  

Poor Thanksgiving usually gets shoved aside in all this craziness.

How does society have a “holiday” about greed the day after a holiday about being thankful for what you have. It’s amazing that people can go from celebrating their blessings on Thanksgiving, to then beating someone up for a TV eight hours later on Black Friday.

To top it all off, Black Friday has even made it’s way into Thanksgiving. Black Friday is creeping up earlier every year just like the Christmas decorations. People are literally having dinner with their family and friends, and then going out and fighting each other for discounted clothes and electronics.

Early Christmas decorating because it shows that companies care more about profit than the employees who make them their money. Some retail workers don’t get to celebrate Halloween because they have to stay late on Halloween night to set up the new Christmas displays. Stores like Macy’s and Sears will be opening at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving. Their employees don’t get to have Thanksgiving dinner with their families because companies won’t give employees one day off to be with their loved ones. These people have lives and families, and they’re missing out on holidays so that big corporations can make even more money. Parent’s miss out on their child’s first time trick-or-treating experience and spending time with family from out of state because they work Thanksgiving to watch people fight over discounted merchandise? It’s ridiculous.

What’s amazing, more than the corporation’s actions, is the fact that customers actually support it. I work a retail job and recently had to work a major holiday. The customers that came in would say, “That stinks you’re working today. You should be out celebrating.” Well if those people weren’t shopping and supporting the company’s actions, the stores would have no reason to stay open.

The holiday is supposed to be about giving and sharing, and it has turned into a commercial cash cow. Retailers get away with treating their employees like dirt, all in the spirit of giving.

The Puyallup Post is the award-winning student news of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2017. Twitter/Instagram @puyalluppost

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Fightin’ Words: Is Christmas arriving too early?

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