Love lost in Valentine’s Day

Rachel Shaffer, Reporter

 

All’s fair in love and war but is Valentine’s Day as much about love as everyone thinks?  Many people are under the impression that Valentine’s Day is the most romantic day of the year filled with happiness and abounding with love.  However, how much of that is realistic?

The truth of the matter is that pagan Romans once celebrated Valentine’s Day with the ceremonial skinning of animals by men and then having the men beat women with the pelts of the recently slain creatures.  It’s not so romantic when you really think about it.

Also, it is believed that Saint Valentine was arrested because he was illegally marrying happy couples but it’s not all conversation hearts and tacky Hallmark cards when it comes to this annual observance.

Star-crossed lovers may turn a blind eye to the fact that Valentine’s Day inherently supports capitalism, consumerism and sexism; the unfortunate part, however, is that Valentine’s Day happens only once every year. Valentine’s Day shouldn’t be an annual event; we should celebrate love on a daily basis.

The fact that society takes a day to commemorate that we love others and that others love us is a heart-warming concept.  People should be more willing to celebrate love at every opportunity.  There does not need to be a special occasion to say “I love you” or spend time with someone you care about.

Valentine’s Day only fuels the ever-burning fire of consumerism.  Valentine’s Day forces people to compulsively purchase things that they don’t need or want to buy because it’s a necessary societal expectation.

Being in a relationship or having a date on Valentine’s Day means one must plan a perfect evening at an overcrowded and overpriced restaurant, spend money on gifts and spend an excessive amount of time planning and participating in the day’s events; being single just leaves you feeling lonely.

Some single people attempt to go out with their friends but they just end up bothered by the couples that surround them.  Why is being single on a Valentine’s Day such a terrible thing?  If you’re single every other day of the year, your relationship status Feb. 14 shouldn’t make any difference.  If anything, Valentine’s Day should be a reminder of all the time and money one saves by not being in a relationship.

Most people may not realize that Valentine’s Day, by the nature of it, promotes sexism.  Valentine’s Day is a detrimental holiday to the ongoing fight against gender roles.  The entire concept of the day is based on the fact that men are to go out and buy gifts for women; most likely because men were once the only money makers in a relationship and were the only ones who could afford to give gifts.

Things have changed, however and women are just as capable as men to make money and provide for their partners.  We spend our whole lives being taught that women are just as good as men or deserve equal opportunity to men but on Valentine’s Day everyone succumbs to the sexist idea that men are supposed to deliver to women.

Love may be all you need but Valentine’s Day may not be as much about love as everyone thinks.