Valentine’s Day: Is it the thought that counts?

Jamilla Burrows-mincey

February 14th is known as a day of love around the world. As the years go by, it has left a lot of people to wonder; where is the love? Many people in our society seem to be oblivious to the fact that the holiday is not all about receiving gifts.
Valentine’s Day began as the roman Festival of Lupercalia, which according to Npr.org, involved “Men sacrificing a goat and a dog, then whipping women with the hides of the animals they had just slain.” All of this was done in an effort to matchmake and increase fertility. Overtime, the day has morphed into a holiday where people simply gift the ones they love with extravagant gifts and tons of sweets, but not everyone feels that this holiday should be celebrated.
Patricia Gomez, a freshman new to high school life at UACHS , would rather focus on her school work instead of a holiday such as this one because she sees this as a distraction.
“I’m not saying I don’t care about Valentine’s Day, but I just don’t see what all the hype is about,” said Patricia.
Morgane Loftin, junior at UACHS, does not feel that people understand the true meaning of Valentine’s day.
“Nowadays it’s like a competition to see who got someone the best gift, it’s no longer about showing affection” said Loftin.
Micro-computing teacher Lakeisha Stokes, who has been in a relationship since high school and has realized it’s not appropriate to broadcast this day in a school setting.
“There are schools that don’t allow the kids to participate in this day during instructional time because administrators are aware of how students can get,” said Stokes.
People tend to grow envious of what the next person has such as materialistic objects, and such an outpouring of affection that can lead students to act out. De’Yianna Mckinnon, a senior in a relationship, feels as though many people get affected from seeing what others are being gifted.
“Everyone worries about who has the best present when it should just be about the affection your partner shows you.” said Mckinnon.
Some students feel that Valentine’s Day is only beneficial to people in relationships. Shamira Marion, a senior at UACHS, has some knowledge regarding this holiday from her own experiences.
“People who are single or even feel insecure about themselves don’t care for Valentine’s Day, it’s just another regular day for them,” said Marion.
Couples and secret admirers put pressure on themselves as they try and find the right gift to woo their crush. When in reality, many believe that the simple act of expressing your love and appreciation for those you care about should be more than enough. In fact, for students such as McKinnon, the holiday is one of their favorites due to the outpouring of love and affection surrounding them.
“This is my favorite holiday besides Christmas and my birthday because anywhere you go, you’re going to see everyone being nice to each other which is uncommon,” said Mckinnon.
Many use this holiday to celebrate their platonic friendships by giving out hugs and words of endearment. These are free of cost and mean a lot to the people they care about. Examining both sides of this issue may lead us to wonder, isn’t it the thought that counts?

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