The end of November brings cold weather, and with it, the end of the fall semester. Everyone is excited to go home and get away from the stress that school brings. The holidays are around the corner to provide some much-needed relief from the pressures of papers and exams.
Unfortunately, many people often overlook Thanksgiving because they are more excited for the holidays that December brings. More and more of us are skipping over Thanksgiving and heading straight to holidays such as Christmas and Hanukkah. Do people just not like turkey anymore? Is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade getting that boring?
Thanksgiving literally breaks down to “give thanks.” It is a time where people can forget about their problems and express gratitude for what they have. This day should not be overlooked. In this materialistic country, we could all use a day to relax and appreciate what we have.
Companies contribute to the commercialism of holidays. They know that consumers want to shop as much as they can. America is a country that values excess and “wants” over needs. Stores are eager to decorate for Christmas and put out seasonal merchandise. The holiday commercials that have already started aren’t helping matters. The ambush of these advertisements encourages consumers to start shopping. The newest technological device seems essential, but togetherness with family and friends is more important. Thanksgiving is a day to relax, watch a football game or a parade and enjoy a home-cooked meal. The importance of it is lost on people who only care about getting the best deals.
It seems that people are more excited for Black Friday than Thanksgiving. A poll by Consumer Reports shows that 69 percent of people will be shopping in stores on Black Friday, while 58 percent will shop online. Also, more and more stores are opening their doors on Thanksgiving evening. There is a reason it is called Black Friday. What’s next? Are these sales going to be a week-long affair?
Thanksgiving is a day that reminds us that family is the most important thing in the world. It shows us that there are more significant things in life than having the newest phone or the most expensive shoes. The holiday is here to make sure that people do not get caught up in what they want, but instead are grateful for what they have.
To bring Thanksgiving back, families can give to a food pantry and help others who do not have a Thanksgiving dinner to look forward to. If shopping is a must, at least buy some extra toys to donate to a toy drive. Giving back to the community is a great way to spread the cheer.
On the holiday, put all of the electronics down and appreciate the company of others. In today’s busy world, it is important to cherish the togetherness that Thanksgiving brings. We need to give thanks for what we have, not what we want in the Black Friday sales. Thanksgiving should not be pushed aside to make room for holidays that promote commercialism.
Junior marketing major
Printed in the 11/19/14 issue.