Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Our Opinion

The Holiday season is one typically thought of for its giving nature. We
give gifts to children, loved ones, friends and, in some cases, even pets.
We enjoy the feeling of seeing people react when receiving the gift that
they had been longing for. We enjoy the feeling of giving to others.

Unfortunately, there are many people who will not be able to share that
same feeling. There are people who are not hoping to receive their favorite
gift, but who are hoping to have the money to feed their families or heat
their homes until the end of the month. Sadly, the ones hit hardest by these
types of situations during the holidays are the children. A child’s most
precious commodity is his or her innocence, and the holiday season is a
festival of innocence with all of its traditions and beliefs. But there is a
villain even more evil than the Grinch lurking during this holiday season.
The villain is poverty.

As of 1996, there were 5.3 million children under the age of six living
under the poverty level in the US. That is a stunning 22.7 percent of the
child population of the United States.

Usually gift giving over the holidays does not include the types of
things considered necessities. We give gifts that people want, what they ask
for. The gifts are luxuries. We feel good after giving a child the toy they
have pined for, the whole holiday season, but imagine the feeling you would
have if you were able to help someone else survive.

Even giving people the necessities that they need can bring joy to a
struggling family. Winter hats, gloves, jackets and all manners of clothing
are always needed.

We at the Collegian firmly believe that people can do more during to the
holidays to help the less fortunate. We salute the organizations that strive
to help those that are struggling with the necessities they need. They are
doing the best they can to help alleviate a situation that is by no other
description, sad.

We also believe that individuals need to do what they can without being
prodded and poked by organizations to do what they know is right. We are at
a time in our country’s economic history where we are in the greatest
position to give, and we should take advantage of it.

The holiday season is the one time of the year where hope reigns
supreme. It is during this time of the year that we preach about good will
toward men, we make resolutions to change our ways and it is the one time of
the year that a “me-first” society thinks about others before themselves.

We at the Collegian are asking you, our readers, to think about others
during this Holiday season. Donate a toy to “Toys for Tots”, spend a few
hours working at a shelter serving meals, work for a charity collecting
money or maybe donate clothes and canned goods to the various drives
happening in our community.

The holiday season is about giving. Not just giving material things to
your friends and family but giving thoughts and assistance to others. In
doing that, you will be giving a little of yourself to those you help and a
little of you goes a long way. Happy Holidays.

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