Happier Holidays

Image result for happy holidaysI saw this proposal to expand holidays from work time, and I would naturally agree. Before capitalism, we had feudalism. And in feudal Christian Europe, there were multiple feast days–remember that the original dozen or so holy days of obligation were also holy days of feasting and leisure.

From the link:

The 40-hour workweek has so entrenched itself in our culture, we’ve forgotten the dream entirely. Meanwhile, we may even be losing our grip on some of our hard-earned, well-established holidays, like Thanksgiving as retailers increasingly force people to work that day to get a jump on the Black Friday rush.
But we can fix this mistake. We can take a stand. We can not only reclaim Thanksgiving; we can extend every weekend to three days.

The author concedes this will be a huge uphill sell, especially with our corporate masters in control.

The thing about extending the weekend to Friday or Monday, and it will become another day off, nothing special maybe. On the other hand, consider this comparison:

The average U.S. worker put in 1,786 hours of labor in 2018, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development — placing in the top third of the 36 OECD countries.

The average German worker worked 1,363 hours last year. That’s about 52 fewer workdays than the average American — or an extra 10 weeks off.

A family-friendly point:

Excessive work can impair your physical health, your family’s happiness, and maybe even your effectiveness on the job, which might be why workers in Germany and some of the other countries with lower work hours have higher levels of productivity than those in the United States.

So, maybe a shorter workday. Or four days of work, with an increase in the hourly wage.

I wouldn’t mind a handful of extra holidays as a start. The writer suggests a start with populating the four months that currently have no federal holiday. A family holiday on the first Monday in August (replacing the first Sunday observed in a handful of states). As a liturgy-minded person, I’d like to see the Church add Holy Thursday and Easter Monday where they do not offer it now. A smattering of holy days would be nice–as long as the festivities beyond liturgy are in place.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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