Tristan Hughes ’19, Business & Ad Manager
Nearly all big holidays have a reason or meaning behind them as cause for celebration. While Easter and Christmas have religious connections, the Fourth of July and Memorial Day recognize and support American soldiers and ideals. Thanksgiving stresses the importance of family and appreciating the small things and MLK Day recognizes and honors the late Civil Rights leaders and the struggles that African-Americans have endured and the list of holidays does not stop there. But what is the point of New Year’s? There truly is not any real reason to celebrate New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day. While the thought of “surviving” another year and changing your life for the better sounds great, the negatives far outweigh the positives. The celebration of New Year’s is pointless, and there is no way around this fact.
First off, let us talk about the arbitrary date surrounding New Year’s. Obviously, a year is the length of time Earth takes to complete one revolution. But what is it about Earth’s orbit that marks Jan. 1 as the start and end line of this journey? New Year’s could easily be celebrated on March 15, if we decide that’s what the starting point of Earth’s orbit should be. Even other cultures celebrate New Year’s at a different part of the year. The actual date of Jan. 1 has no significance or reason to be celebrated, other than it is that day that the Romans chose. With that being said, there are plenty of reasons why New Year’s celebrations are overrated.
New Year’s resolutions are a common practice to those who celebrate the New Year. Everyone flocks at the idea that the new year will bring them the strength to overcome a habit that they have been building for years. The truth is harsh, nearly everyone who makes a New Year’s resolution will break it. Making a New Year’s resolution without the true motivation to stick to it is a blatant waste of time.
Furthermore, the ball drop is extremely boring and anti-climatic. With the buildup given to this giant shiny ball, including multiple music performances and events, you would imagine the ball drop to be some glamorous confetti fest. Sadly, it is not, and watching the ball fall a few feet year after year does not live up to the expectations of the so called ‘Grand New Year’. The celebrations of New Year’s are ultimately bland and pointless.
Not only are New Year’s ceremonies watered down, the after parties are detrimental to society. According to the CDC, “29 percent of all total traffic fatalities in 2017 involved a driver with a BAC of .08 or higher.” And New Year’s, perhaps, is the worst time of the year for drunk driving incidents. During the 12 hour window of 6:00 p.m. on Dec. 31 and 6:00 a.m. on Jan. 1, there are 71 percent more accidents involving alcohol than average.
New Year’s is a meaningless holiday that jeopardizes public safety. Time, resources, and money could be better spent on more significant celebrations that better reflect our moral values.
Photo courtesy of DMV