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Holiday season begins too early

By Billy Finnegan, Columnist

The holiday season is called the most wonderful time of the year. It's the time when we are encouraged to be better people- while at the same time as indulging ourselves. It's a time full of Christmas Trees, Menorahs, Kwanzaa beads, and whatever other decorations may come up in our celebration of the winter holidays. Christmas carols will be playing on all the radio stations, Santa Clauses will appear left and right, and maybe, we'll even get a little bit of snow. There's joy all around. It really is the most wonderful time of the year.

            But it doesn't start until the day after Thanksgiving, and too many people seem to forget that little tidbit.

            Don't get me wrong—the holidays are my favorite time of the year. I look forward to them as much as I look forward to the upcoming release of "Deathly Hallows: Part 1." I love giving and receiving gifts. I have 188 Christmas songs on my iPod. It's a beautiful season, but I don't want to see anything about it until after Thanksgiving. The reason why Black Friday exists is to start the holiday season (via indulging ourselves, but also, indulging others, because that's when gift shopping begins).

            Every year, we are bombarded with Christmas imagery for far too long. I've heard of people seeing Santa Claus decorations in stores as early as August. Why? Does anyone really need to buy a Santa Claus in the summer? No: it's totally unnecessary. While August is, at least, in an anomaly, how often do we start spotting Christmas decorations in the middle of October, before even Halloween—a holiday known for its commercialism and store popularity—is over? Again, it's totally unnecessary.

            Just as I started to write this article, I heard my suitemate singing a Christmas carol. It's barely November. Christmas isn't for more than a month. Why are we getting into the festivities so early? The answer is because we're encouraged to do so. I'm sure I'm not the only one who loves the holidays so much. We are coerced by the commercial market to start the Christmas season early. Our natural excitement for the holiday season encourages the corporations to bombard us with commercials and early sales.

Their reasoning isn't bad. Christmas is, if I am not mistaken, the biggest shopping time of the year, and starting the season early is good for them. For us, however, the excess of holiday cheer makes the season ordinary. When we become accustomed to Christmas all year round, it isn't as special.

            By starting the season so early, we are ruining the magic of the season. We are taking away the wintery joys of the holiday and replacing them with something that becomes increasingly mundane as the season progresses. So, Hofstra, I urge you—please, do not start your holiday season until at least Nov. 26.

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