Christmas Music & Thanksgiving: Before or After?

Since the dawn of time, one question has constantly plagued humanity. No, it’s not, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” It’s not, “Which came first: the chicken or the egg?” It’s not even, “Who let Hollywood make a sequel to The Croods?”

The question is, “When is it truly acceptable to listen to Christmas music?” Can songs about Santa and baby Jesus be played before Thanksgiving throughout the month of November, or do people need to wait until after Thanksgiving to engage in the Christmas activity? This debate has confounded scientists and torn countries apart, but, ladies and gentlemen, look no further for the answer than this article, because here at The Daily Runner, we answer the crucial questions.

Many people argue that Christmas music becomes acceptable immediately after November begins. Jonathan Overton, the Regent-renowned, even-better-than-Ryan-Seacrest host of “What RU Doing” (the Student Activities Board’s biweekly show that is surely on its way to the Emmys), believes that “November is socially acceptable.” Several other Regent students expressed similar sentiments, denying that listening to Christmas music before Thanksgiving has any detrimental effect on our celebration of Thanksgiving.

On the other hand, what seems to be the dominant and most vocal view on the matter at Regent is that Christmas music deserves to be played before Thanksgiving just as much as I deserve to be in a barbershop quart: not at all. Life Group Leader and member of Regent’s men’s soccer team, Josh Kline, advocates for this position, claiming that “if we listen to Christmas music for too long, then it will lose its specialness.” Admittedly, it is difficult to argue with such scientific terminology as “specialness.” Fellow Regent athlete Kelsey Goodson asserts that we “have to give Thanksgiving a chance to shine.” Proponents of this view seem to be the most volatile in defending their position, often refuting counterarguments with as much passion as I refute salads. I know this because I used to be one of these people, but times have certainly changed.

One student, who wishes to remain anonymous, revealed that he started listening to Christmas music in September. But let’s ignore him.

At the risk of instigating a civil war, for most of my life, I’ve been a firm advocate of the “After-Thanksgiving” side. However, something is different this year. Maybe it’s due to the craziness that is 2020. Maybe it’s because I’m becoming more charitable as I grow older… which seems unlikely.

The fact of the matter is, I now start playing Christmas music in mid-November. Why? Well, allow me to explain in the most logical and scholarly way that I can. The way I see it, this dispute can be compared to Chick-fil-A and Arby’s. Chick-fil-A was founded in 1946. When Arby’s emerged over fifteen years after Chick-fil-A, it was quick to also include a chicken sandwich on its menu. Nevertheless, this doesn’t detract from our enjoyment of Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwiches. In the same sense, listening to Christmas music before Thanksgiving will not diminish our enjoyment of Thanksgiving because, unlike me and exercise, the two can coincide in perfect harmony with each other.

OK, I may be in the minority of people putting Arby’s on the same level as Chick-fil-A, especially at Regent, but my point still stands… somewhat.

So, what ultimately is the answer? Embracing the festive Christmas spirit through song prior to Thanksgiving is not the end of the world… unless you start in September.


Thomas Wilkinson

Thomas Wilkinson is a staff writer for The Daily Runner.