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Please give me a break

By Staff
Scot Beard
During the past 10 years or so I have noticed a disturbing trend in retail outlets across the country – the need to always have holiday related merchandise on the shelves year round.
The first few days of January see stores stock up on heart-shaped candy, roses and chocolates in preparation for Valentine's Day, which is in mid February.
When February 15 rolls around, the reds and pinks of candy boxes are replaced with the pastel colors associated with Easter, which can be anytime between March 22 and April 25.
After the bunnies and eggs flee the shelves, grills and charcoal take up residence in preparation for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day.
By late August, which is before Labor Day, Halloween junk begins to show up at stores and is immediately replaced by Thanksgiving and Christmas merchandise.
Then the cycle begins again. I am surprised a retail chain has not emerged focusing only on holiday merchandise.
Why is it necessary to have the all of the holidays constantly thrust upon us?
Some down time between the holidays is a good thing.
By not having a constant reminder in stores, people can allow their mental batteries to recharge without the stress of going immediately from getting the right box of candy on Valentine's Day to purchasing new Easter clothes for the kids.
That break would allow people to focus on the meaning behind the holidays, not the merchandise they need to purchase to celebrate it properly.
There was once a time when Thanksgiving and Christmas were the most important aspect of the celebration was spending time with family and appreciating what you had in life.
Now, Thanksgiving is about eating a turkey then standing in line for 12 hours so you can be the first person in the store when it opens for a Christmas sale at 5 a.m. the day after Thanksgiving.
The marketing of Christmas as a celebration of material things instead of focusing on the religious aspects of the holiday, can have disastrous results.
Last Friday a Wal-Mart employee in New York was trampled to death as people rushed through the door for a day-after-Thanksgiving sale.
Nothing in Wal-Mart, or any other retail outlet, is more valuable than a human life.
The holiday season will forever be tarnished for this man's family as it will not be associated with the meaning behind the season, but as the time he was killed trying to earn a living in a profession not associated with violence.
Don't get caught up in the constant-holiday mentality retail stores push upon the American consumer.
Take a few days or weeks to think about why we celebrate the holiday in question and see if they are not more enjoyable.