Commercialization of Christmas ruining true meaning

Gracie Deichler, opinion editor

As approach the Christmas season, it is almost impossible to avoid the huge plastic illuminated displays, tacky music, and Christmas specials on TV. Is Christmas becoming too commercial? Should we return to more traditional celebrations?

Nowadays Christmas is a holiday that toy and food companies have changed into a multi-billion dollar marketing machine.

Everyone knows the original meaning of Christmas. Mother Mary was pledged to be wed to Joseph, but before they married, Mary found out she was with child through the Holy Spirit. An angel of the Lord soon appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” When Joseph woke, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him to do and took Mary home as his wife. But he had no union with her until she gave birth to their son.

The origins of Christmas did not start with a man in a red suit delivering toys to the good and coal to the bad. In fact, Saint Nicholas wasn’t born until hundreds of years later.

When asked, most students knew the meaning of Christmas, but said that it is not celebrated in the way it was originally meant to be. You see stickers everywhere that read “Put Christ back in Christmas!” but are the people that support these stickers hypocritical? Telling young children that Santa is on his way with the presents of one’s dreams? But then complaining about Jesus not even being included in the holiday at this point.

Christmas is supposed to be a religious festival where families come together and celebrate the birth of Christ. It isn’t about plastic Santas and lights. Tacky decorations such as these have nothing to do with family, respect or rejoicing for our fortunes. These are simply disgusting and contribute to destroying the holiday for no valid reason. How can people possibly think covering their house in lights celebrates the birth of Christ?

Some argue that in these secular times, when religion plays little importance in our lives, we need something else, something everyone can bond over. Festive cheer is the thing we can all bond over. Yes, the stores may start pushing Christmas in November, and lights may be turned on months in advance of the main event, but this does lift our spirits. People start to think what they should buy others to cheer them up; people talk to old family members, they even offer perfect strangers good will. If this spirit is prolonged by commercialism then surely it is positive and not negative. If this argument is seen as true, Why don’t we see non-Jewish people celebrating Hanukkah? Christmas wasn’t meant to be a holiday of goodwill towards men. It was meant to be a celebration of the birth of a savior.

If we continue to commercialize Christmas, then who knows what future generations will think the true meaning is. Will they think SANTA SANTA SANTA, or will it truly go back to the celebration of one religion’s figure head? Who knows. But as of now, our society is heading down a slippery slope of permanently changing the true meaning of Christmas.