Point/Counterpoint: Is Valentine’s Day a legitimate holiday

Katlynn Fox


Cluttering the aisles of any store, accompanied by discount Christmas decorations just days after the departing holiday, is a mass of pink and red garbage. The cheesy decorations and favors of the useless holiday are an eyesore and quite frankly, they reek of capitalism. 

Valentine’s Day has become one of the most popular ‘Hallmark holidays,’ a phenomenon used to describe holidays that have lost significance in meaning and now exist primarily for commercial purposes. In this case, Valentine’s Day exists to pressure couples into spending their hard-earned money. According to the National Retail Foundation, over half of adults in the U.S. plan to celebrate the holiday and plan to spend upwards of $21.8 billion in total. 

Not only is this a ridiculous charge to the banks of Americans all over the country, but it takes away the significance of quality time and genuine love, in favor of gifts. Normally it’s the thought that counts, I’m sure many couples will still be pasting a smile on their faces to convince their spouse they love the useless gift they were given. 

The holiday is also another excuse for people to be full of themselves, whether it’s couples posting each other all over social media, or that one friend who won’t shut up about being single. People just love to talk about themselves and Valentine’s Day is of course no different. Social media has added even more expectations on couples and singles to make glamorous plans for the day. At this point, it’s hard to tell if people in a relationship actually like each other, or if it’s all performative for a stunning Instagram picture or a viral TikTok. 

I also think it’s odd that couples use the holiday as the one day to complete acts of service for one another. I feel like it’s OK to normalize having a meal together or spending time alone year round, rather than putting so much pressure and anticipation on one day. Having something to celebrate is always fun, but people need a reminder that you don’t need a big, grand holiday to do something special together.

Valentine’s Day can be a magical day of love and quality time, but the capitalist agenda has tarnished its reputation immensely. I’m a long-time fan of great rom coms and heart shaped chocolates, but the ‘essence of love in the air’ is just the stench of capitalism.


Hailey Dirks


Whether you look with disdain or joy at the conglomeration of pink and red decor lining every store during the month of February, Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching. As one of the most divisive holidays, I feel as though Valentine’s Day doesn’t get the appreciation it truly deserves.

Valentine’s Day is often associated with cheesy cards, heart shaped boxes of chocolate, romantic gestures and endless tears and tubs of ice cream for those who find themselves without a lover on the day of love. Many scoff at the holiday, shouting that it is materialistic and superficial to celebrate. I believe these people fail to recognize the true, important meaning behind Valentine’s Day. 

This day of love was born when a man, Saint Valentine, gave his life in exchange for the ability to unite people. The emperor of the land, Claudius II Gothicus, resolutely demanded soldiers not get married, for fear that they would not be able to fight. Saint Valentine defied the emperor and married those soldiers, eventually getting caught and being martyred. He didn’t die simply for himself; he died because he united people in love. In today’s climate, the utmost thing we need is unity and love. Valentine’s Day helps us remember that.

While I do believe loved ones should be celebrated throughout the year, not just on one day, it’s beneficial to have a day dedicated to being intentional with one’s significant other. However, Valentine’s Day is not a day exclusive for couples, though many people tend to think so. Love and appreciation can be shown to your friends, family members and yourself on this day of unity. 

In a world where productivity and hustle culture reigns, it is helpful to have a day to be reminded to slow down and appreciate the people you love. Overall, the point of holidays are to remind people to take time for what really matters in life. Valentine’s Day is a yearly reminder for humans to relish in the ability to love and be loved.