Opinion: Valentine’s Day is a capitalist scam

Riann Masi, Online Editor

There are a multitude of holidays that Americans celebrate: Halloween, Saint Patrick’s Day, Fourth of July and multiple others. Every year on Feb. 14 since the early 1700s, the holiday of Valentine’s Day has been celebrated by those “lucky” couples. This day is to celebrate love and affection, but has it become a money-hungry capitalist celebration instead?

The traditions associated with the holiday involve purchasing candy, stuffed animals and more. The construct of Valentine’s day is primarily a capitalist agenda in the 21st century. “People should take their loved ones to dinner or spend time with them not because it’s what the holiday tells them to do,” the Weasley News reports. 

Valentine’s Day is also harmful to people’s mental state. Struggling to compare to the couples seen on television shows can highlight how alone or low some can feel on said holiday.  Valentine’s Day can be very hard for singles to be reminded how alone they are. 

Not only does this holiday put pressure on single people, but also pressure on couples. The thoughts of what to get the significant other, how meaningful or how expensive the gift is and whether the day will be memorable. Society says couples should show their loved ones how much they are loved by buying presents and preparing extravagant plans for the day. 

Valentine’s Day is a capitalist scam— especially on couples. On the holiday alone, the U.S. spending amount is expected to exceed $20 million according to the National Retail Federation. Corporations during this time seem to make couples feel obligated to spend money on their significant other. 

The holiday started off in the fifteenth century with cards then expanded to include candy and flowers. Now the traditional rituals related to Valentine’s Day drift from cards to expensive gifts and evenings out. The holiday may not have started as a capitalist holiday, but corporate greed has changed that. Corporations have changed this holiday to have a consumerist expectation on the day.