Valentine’s Day is a ludicrous and unnecessary holiday

Editorial

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As the time of year rolls around, and the sweet smell of chocolate fills the air of stores, and everything is enviably pink, have you ever taken a moment to wonder where this ludicrous holiday came from?

Valentine’s Day, the holiday when friends and family express their affection with greetings and gifts, has been the cause of grief and stress for many years. The ancient Romans may be responsible for the name of the day. The holiday has begins with the Roman festival of Lupercalia, which took place in February. The festival, which was to celebrate the being of spring, included the pairing off of women to men for partners. At the end of the 5th century, Pope Gelasius the first replaced Lupercalia with St. Valentine’s Day. This holiday came to be celebrated as a day of love from around the fourteenth century. Although there were several Christian saints named Valentine, St. Valentine’s Day, as it’s known today, contains origins in both Christian and ancient Roman tradition. So, who was Saint Valentine?

As for valentines, they began to pop up in the 1500s, and by the late 1700s, printed cards were being used. The first valentines in the United States were printed in the1800s. Valentines commonly include Cupid, the Roman god of love, along with hearts. The usual gifts may include candy and flowers, and more often than not they are red roses, a symbol of beauty and love. The day is popular in the United States as well as in Britain, Canada, and Australia, and it is also celebrated in other countries, including Argentina, France, Mexico, and South Korea. In the Philippines, it is the most common wedding anniversary, and weddings of hundreds of couples are not unusual on the day. The holiday has expanded to expressions of affection among relatives and friends. Many children exchange valentines with one another at school.

So, what does a Christian saint have to do with roses and love, and why is this holiday so ridiculous? The idea that having someone’s affection not only needs a day to be paraded around, but also to be rubbed in others faces is what’s so obnoxious about it. Every day should be an excuse to show someone that you care, but the holiday is really unnecessary. Not to mention the amount of money spent on pointless things, such as roses and chocolate.

According to National Retail Federation, the total spending for the holiday is expected to top $18.2 billion. That’s an average of $136.57 per person and in 2016, a whopping $4.5 billion was spent on jewelry, $4.4 billion on an evening out, and $1.9 billion on flowers.  See how much money people is spent on flowers, candy and cards every year? There so many other things that you can spend that money on.

Some of the reasons that Valentine’s Day does more harm than good are that it make people who are not in a relationship feel unloved and it puts people who are in a relationship under more stress. It’s a huge day for restaurants and florists, because while you’re looking for a table at the most expensive restaurant to impress that special someone, or a last minute bouquet of roses to show that you care, or the perfect piece of overpriced folded paper to prove that you didn’t forget, the insecurities and stress that you’re going through is being preyed on by big companies, just to make a profit. Ads will lure you in and convince you buy some cheesy and quite obnoxious fruit arrangement. The prices of roses, teddy bears, and chocolates will increase by a trifold just for one day, just to be sold for half, or even a quarter of the cost on Feb. 15.

A study done by Summer’s Eve asked 2,000 women how and with whom they are planning to spend Valentine’s Day, as well as their real thoughts on the “holiday.” While 45% still want a traditional date night, the rest could really care less; they’re either spending it alone, with friends, or leaving it up to their partner to make plans, nearly 50% said they will make their own plans this year. Another 50% of women think the whole day is tacky and overrated.