The holiday season is among us in America. Most people would agree that this time of year brings out many positive feelings. This time of year has been coined as “the most wonderful time of the year” and “the happiest season of all”. However, the path to happiness during this season can be arrived at by different means. Some people find happiness by spending time with friends and family or volunteering and donating to those in need. While others find pleasure in obtaining material goods during the best sales of the year for their own personal use.
The number of people finding pleasure in material goods is on the rise in America. America has received the reputation of a “very generous and family oriented nation” but some of that generosity has turned into selfishness through the consumption of materialistic goods. I argue that America has become an extremely materialistic society that cares more about getting than giving. Black Friday is no longer exclusive to the day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday is now an event that starts on Thanksgiving, a holiday in which people are supposed to give thanks to what they have. My view may be a little biased because I grew up in a home that stressed giving and family values. Therefore, I cherish the holidays with my friends and family.
However, when our society has retailers such as Verizon implementing holiday slogans like “Have a Happy Thanksgetting”, someone is missing the point of the season. To be fair, not all retailers are a part of this profit driven culture. Stores like Scheels took the vow to stay closed on the national holiday of Thanksgiving so their employees are able to spend time with their families. Not everything should be about profits in our society. The Scheels example is the model that should be followed. Our society as a whole has sort of lost their way when it comes to this issue.
I am urging our society to gravitate back towards family values rather than sulk in our precious materialistic items. We should be more excited to bond with the people we love rather than obsess over the latest piece of technology. This holiday season, I challenge more people to volunteer at local shelters, give to charity, and, help the misfortunate; because when the holiday season is more focused on giving than getting, society as a whole will benefit. I truly hope you take this call to action to heart for the betterment of the community.
Dustin Richard, senior in political science (pre-law)