The Respectability of Valentine’s Day

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The Respectability of Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day is a holiday that is accused of being oversold to the United States.

Valentine's Day is a holiday that is accused of being oversold to the United States.

Casey Kula

Valentine's Day is a holiday that is accused of being oversold to the United States.

Casey Kula

Casey Kula

Valentine's Day is a holiday that is accused of being oversold to the United States.

Casey Kula, Contributer

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Well, another Valentine’s Day has come and gone. Some students went with his or her significant other to a romantic dinner for two, others met up with family and friends and finally, a part of the population did not have plans or ignored the holiday altogether.

In the past few years, Valentine’s Day has lost its magic touch. The number of participants has decreased, and in 2016, only 54.8%  said they would continue to celebrate. Although the participation of the holiday has decreased, it is still considered one of the top three holidays, most likely from its support from the abundance of candy and flower sales.

Christmas still reigns above it with nine out of ten people celebrating each year indicating a 90% participation rate. Christmas might be seen as more popular, but even holidays like Halloween (69.5% of American participation) are gaining much more publicity than the holiday meant for sharing love.

Valentine’s Day is mainly criticized because of some people questioning its respectability: is it worth being such an extensive and commercialized holiday? Junior Hadley Rosengrant declared, “The whole thing seems really cliché. It’s just so commercialized.” 

Rosengrant is very correct when it comes to Valentine’s Days commercializing. Holidays are a way for businesses to make that extra buck when they can, even when they don’t need it. In 2018, Valentine’s Day had sales in the nineteen billions. If an enterprise gains the opportunity to mark up the price of a box of chocolates, they will not relent.

A stereotypical theme that has decreased Valentine’s Day’s popularity is the idea that the only reason certain people dislike Valentine’s Day is because they are single, but is that truly the case? People assume that since a person does not have a date, that they despise everyone else who does. That’s the role of today’s ‘society standards.’

People assume one needs a relationship to be happy, but that’s a lie, and besides, some people who are in a relationship also do not think they need to celebrate. Sometimes it’s good to not have a specific day where you have to plan things since everyone else in the population is, but instead to actually do something for the two of you on a totally separate day that’s special in its own.

Even with the negativity against Valentine’s Day, it is still in certain ways an optimistic holiday. For starters, the holiday is not just here for romance. It’s also a way for family and friends to get together.

“It’s a holiday dedicated to being in love and that doesn’t have to mean exclusively dating someone. It’s for all kinds of love and I think that if you’re not bitter about being alone, you might find that it’s actually kind of sweet and that everyone deserves a chance at love,” acclaimed sophomore Julia Pimmel. Since it is a holiday, Valentine’s Day gives you a whole evening set up for the perfect date, party, or friend hangout.

Valentine’s Day is also an opportunity to celebrate for all ages. As a child, most of us remember giving candy and Valentine’s cards to fellow students. That still continues into teenage years and adulthood as people accept the moment to give love a chance.

Freshmen Samantha Krueger states, “It’s just a cute and fun way to celebrate the people that you love and I think that’s extremely respectable. There’s toxicity that people have made around it, but the holiday in itself doesn’t have any real negative meanings. Society’s versions of what they think Valentine’s Day should be can sometimes be unrespectable, but the holiday in itself is perfectly fine.”

So, when Valentine’s Day 2020 rolls around, maybe try and participate in some shape or form. It could be a date with a significant other, spending time with loved ones, or even giving yourself some self-love. If you think the idea of Valentine’s Day needs to change, do something that truly exemplifies its true nature for our society.

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