I walk into Starbucks on November 1, the day after Halloween, and I see that Starbucks has come out with their Christmas cups?! Christmas is more than a month away, and already, stores are pressuring customers to get their Christmas shopping done. November comes around and you start thinking about Christmas shopping, winter tires, and holiday decorations. Whether it’s sitting down to watch a movie, or just watching a YouTube video, commercials start to play about Christmas sales and shopping.
On a more serious note, all of the excessive pressure to consume is taking away from Remembrance Day, and more people are forgetting about our Veterans who have fought for this country. Christmas is beginning to overshadow Remembrance Day more and more each year. Starbucks starts advertising their new Christmas cups, Costco puts out all their Christmas decorations, and many stores around the mall are already “Christmas-fied.” Sadly it is easy to forget about Remembrance Day. It’s very disrespectful when stores put up their Christmas decorations before November 11; it feels as if they are overlooking Remembrance Day because it doesn’t bring them any money. One store in Manitoba is making sure that they are respecting veterans and remembering those who have fallen. The store banned any Christmas decorations until after Remembrance Day; they are also asking people to share their stories about their personal connection with the military and army. The store has empty shelfs with signs saying “Lest We Forget”, and people can bring in their old photographs and documents about those who they know have fought in a war.
Unfortunately, the disrespect for what we should value doesn’t just happen in Canada. In Canada, Remembrance Day is on November 11, and is usually overshadowed by Christmas, and in the United States, Thanksgiving in on November 26, with black Friday on November 27. Some stores see Black Friday as a competition to open before anyone else, so they can attract more customers. The whole point of Thanksgiving is to count one’s blessings and spend time with family and loved ones, but when Black Friday stores are opening the night of Thanksgiving, it’s rude to say “look at our sales, don’t you want these things?”
Holidays are all about family and reflection and should not be about money. Sure, it can be fun to go very early in the morning to the mall and have a fun time with your friends, or decorate for Christmas with your family, but when it’s diminishing the actual meaning of the efforts of our veterans, it’s going too far.
Photo courtesy of: misslindsaylane.blogspot.ca