COMMENTARY: Local MTSU Professor says that Christmas is Starting Earlier and Earlier Each Year

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VERBATIM of Above Audio Commentary: “Back in the good old days, whenever they were, you knew when the 4th of July was, Labor Day came before Thanksgiving, and Christmas was always in December.

Well, those days are long gone, and if you don’t believe it, just look through the holiday offerings on the Internet, radio and television, and in newspapers and magazines.

Here it is, before Thanksgiving, and we’re already seeing Christmas stories in the newspaper, we’re seeing Christmas specials on television and we’re seeing ads for something called “pre-Christmas” sales.

Of course they’re “pre-Christmas” sales. Anything that happens before Christmas is “pre-Christmas.” In fact, most people used to do their Christmas shopping “pre-Christmas,” except for a few of us who always put the shopping off until the last possible pre-Christmas minute.

But over the years the advertising, entertainment and news businesses have been steadily telescoping the holiday calendar.

It used to be we didn’t see television Christmas specials until the middle of December. Then we had the Thanksgiving parades, usually accompanied by Santa Claus arriving on cue. Now we have Christmas specials before Thanksgiving, and I saw lots of Christmas paraphernalia for sale right alongside Halloween candy and scary decorations.

I hate to even suggest this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if at some point in the not-too-distant future some benighted soul doesn’t try to combine Christmas and Halloween decorations and trappings into one blended eyesore.

And I guess there are some people who like to start the holiday season as soon as possible. After all, the longer we can celebrate joy and happiness, the better off we’ll all be.

A few years ago the advertising business developed the “Christmas in July” sale. I guess 4th of July wasn’t enough of a business draw, so the sales had to be hyped with Christmas.

Yet somehow I think a “Mid-Summer’s Night sale” would be more appropriate. It’s just not as catchy. -I’m Larry Burriss”


 

 

 

About Dr. Burriss

Larry Burriss, professor of journalism, teaches introductory and media law courses. At the graduate level he teaches quantitative research methods and media law. He holds degrees from The Ohio State University (B.A. in broadcast journalism, M.A. in journalism), the University of Oklahoma (M.A. in human relations), Ohio University (Ph.D. in journalism) and Concord Law School (J.D.). He has worked in print and broadcast news and public relations, and has published extensively in both academic and popular publications. He has won first place in the Tennessee Associated Press Radio Contest nine times. Dr. Burriss’ publications and presentations include studies of presidential press conferences, NASA photography, radio news, legal issues related to adolescent use of social networking sites, legal research, and Middle Earth.

Dr. Burriss has served as director of the School of Journalism, dean of the College of Mass Communication and president of the MTSU Faculty Senate. He was appointed by Gov. Phil Bredesen to serve on the Tennessee Board of Regents. He was a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force and served on active duty in Mali, Somalia, Bosnia, Central America, Europe and the Pentagon.