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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

ELMS: Christmas can wait its turn

The wreaths are back up along Wisconsin Avenue, holiday music is on regular rotation on the radio and department stores are advertising everything you could ever need (and more) to throw the perfect holiday party. Christmas is in the air.

It’s not even Thanksgiving yet.

For the past couple of weeks, it seems like everyone on campus is talking about “those people” who are prematurely buying into the holiday hype.

I have to admit it. I’m one of “those people.” I love Christmas, and as soon as that first snow fell, no matter how brief it was, I immediately made a Holiday station on Pandora and put on my Christmas socks.

But when so many people kept saying to me, “It’s too soon” or “Don’t you even care about Thanksgiving?” I realized they might be right. I might be overlooking one of the most important holidays of the season.

Thanksgiving is a day when family and friends come together, set any feuds or differences aside, and enjoy plate after plate of delicious food. It is also possibly the one holiday not tainted by extreme commerciality. There is no stress of buying the perfect gift for your significant other, your parents or that uncle you never even talk to. There’s only people enjoying each other’s company and giving thanks for the things they are grateful for.

The first Thanksgiving was in 1621 when the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared a fall harvest feast together. For more than 200 years, America’s individual colonies and states celebrated the harvest with feasts of thanksgiving, but it wasn’t until 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.

That day in 1621 was sadly one of the only harmonious interactions between the colonists and Native Americans, whose land would eventually be taken away from them. It’s amazing how far a little bit of shared food can go to promote a sense of community and respect, and that’s something that often goes overlooked.

Enjoying a feast of any extent on any occasion, especially with family and friends, is something our society should truly do more often. It gives people a simple reason to escape from the never-ending stresses of daily life and slow down, if only long enough to enjoy a good meal. It also gives people the chance for genuine face-to-face interaction with those they care about, rather than a fleeting text, Tweet or wall post.

As utterly excited as I am for Christmas, I now realize I’ve been disregarding an extremely important holiday. We need more Thanksgivings. We need more excuses to spend time with people we love, to eat something other than fast food and to sit back and enjoy ourselves. Thanksgiving gives us just that, and we should really take advantage of it. Christmas can wait its turn.

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