Christmas is Overrated

I think Christmas is overrated. Although many of you are appalled by this statement, let me explain my argument. It is safe to say that Christmas is a widely known and loved holiday in both the U.S. and the whole world. I do not disagree that it is an exciting and fun holiday, during which many people create amazing traditions. However, I think that we uphold the holiday too highly, especially in American culture, and it has become extremely capitalized. 

There are 11 recognized federal holidays, but there are hundreds of other holidays celebrated throughout the country. My question is: why is Christmas held so much higher than others, where is the love for all those hundreds of other holidays? For example, New Years represents a fresh start and fondly looking back on old memories. It also represents setting goals for the next year and personal growth. Thanksgiving is a time of gratitude, family, and good food. There are countless other holidays that are not nearly as celebrated when they hold a great significance and should be more uplifted. 

 For some, Christmas represents family, tradition, or religion, but Christmas often revolves around material things like gifts in many households. According to the National Retail Federation, the average household spends a whopping amount of approximately 1,000 dollars! For many people this could be a year’s worth of groceries, or a month’s rent. Although this may not seem like a great sum of money for some of you, for others this could be considerable. Christmas has strayed away from its traditional meaning and in many ways become capitalized, and a way for businesses to make profit. It has started to surround how many gifts you get and how expensive they are. For many low-income families, Christmas is a difficult time, as parents that can not afford to splurge as much on gifts feel guilty. Younger children especially are not able to understand as easily and may wonder why they did not get as many presents as their friends. Christmas is much more upheld in wealthier families and it is important to think about how this holiday can be a difficult time for some families. 

Christmas is traditionally a religious holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus, but for many Christmas traditions have no religious involvement. This holiday looks different in every household. However, for many families whose religion or culture do not celebrate Christmas, it can be difficult seeing Christmas so heavily represented and uplifted. This includes people who practice Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, people who celebrate Kwanzaa, and many more. 

Christmas has become an overrepresented and capitalized holiday that has strayed away from its true meaning. Instead of focusing so intensely on a holiday that emphasizes material possessions and spending money we should uplift holidays that celebrate wholesome, beneficial traditions.