The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Cross Currents: Are you for or against Valentine’s Day?

Alloy Zarate
Illustration by Alloy Zarate, 2020

With Valentines day rolling around the corner, The Channels asked two staff members what their opinion is on the holiday.

Taajvi Singh

Taajvi Singh, Staff Writer 

While many people might not like Valentine’s Day because they assume it’s a consumerist celebration, I disagree. Valentine’s Day is a beautiful holiday because it brings many people together and is an opportunity to express appreciation for the loved ones in our life. Valentine’s day applies to both romantic and platonic relationships. Studies have also shown that Valentine’s Day can benefit your health. According to UAB Medicine, the love shown on Valentine’s Day can help you and your partner reduce the risk of heart disease and stress, as well as relieve anxiety. If chronic pain isn’t managed, it can damage heart tissue and blood vessels. Sudden surges of pain release adrenalin, a hormone that increases heart rate and blood pressure. This holiday may help increase your heart rate that can lead to a healthier lifestyle. Not only does the celebration benefit physical health, but it also has the mental benefit of releasing dopamine, reducing the feeling of anxiety and loneliness. People who have more highly affectionate experience have said to be more likely to report less signs of anxiety and depression. Valentine’s Day has shown to be very beneficial to your mental and physical health, so I believe this holiday to be important and beneficial for us in a way for us to show love.

Aneli Larson

Anneli Larson, Staff Writer

When going shopping this time of year, it is impossible to ignore the pink and red balloons and heart shaped chocolate, and there is no denying Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. For some, the excitement and anticipation of the holiday may be exhilarating. Others, however, may be dreading it. Count me in with the latter. 

Valentine’s Day is known as a holiday dedicated to expressing gratitude and appreciation for loved ones. By removing the rose-tinted glasses and gaining a greater perspective on the holiday, one can find a variety of reasons to be against the celebration.

To start, the obvious commercialization of love is apparent through not-so-subtle marketing tactics. Leading up to the holiday, businesses promote themed products, and advertisements tempt consumers to demonstrate their love through material objects. Giant teddy bears, colossal bouquets of flowers, and heart-shaped commodities create a pressure to conform to consumerist ideals that can take away from the genuine heartfelt expression of love and, in turn, create strains on relationships. True love should not be equivalent to a cheap box of chocolates. 

For others, Valentine’s Day can accentuate feelings of loneliness as a result of unfulfilled societal expectations. The emphasis on romance and love that the holiday flaunts can negatively influence single people, divorcees, or even those grieving the loss of a loved one. The idea that there is a day that holds one type of love higher than another is questionable. 

On another note, designating one day to celebrate love can downplay the importance of expressing it year-round. Love is not a seasonal sentiment, and reducing it to one day out of an entire year promotes a risk of neglecting the everyday love that sustains relationships. 

My opposition to Valentine’s Day is not an expulsion of love, but a rejection of the commercialization of a deep, complex emotion–one that should be expressed authentically and joyfully, and not just on a single day.

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