Autor: prof. Bâgu Corina
Colegiul Tehnic de Construcții și Protecția Mediului Arad
Tradition is a nation’s most valuable asset. The passing down of the beliefs, practices and customs from the past to the present is what defines a nation in its purest essence. The word tradition stands for a customary way of thinking or believing that has been passed down in this way and continuously followed for a long time. Most of the world’s nations value their own traditions, preserve them as well as possible and try to pass them on to their followers as powerful symbols of their national identity.
For the mercantile world we live in the only priceless things left are customs and traditions and that’s why they are so worth praising.
People in every culture, all around the world are fond of celebrating holidays. The word „holiday” literally means „holy day”. However most American holidays do not have a religious background but they are commemorative both in nature and origin. America is a nation blessed with a rich ethnic heritage and hence the possibility to trace back some of their holidays to diverse cultural sources and traditions. Still, all holidays have taken on a distinctively American flavor. In the U.S. the word „holiday” is synonymous with „celebration”.
Although it is a newly formed country compared to the other nations of the world, the U.S.A. has its own culture and its distinctive traditions. What is more, most of the other countries have adopted some of its traditions – mostly under the form of holidays – and have turned them into moments of celebration among their people, too.
In the strict sense no national holidays are to be found in the United States, each of the 50 states having jurisdiction over its holidays. Still, most states observe the federal public holidays which are considered legal, even though the President and the Congress can legally designate holidays only for government employees. Federal legal holidays are generally observed keeping in mind the legislation of individual states. The dates of these holidays and those of many others are established by each state government and not by the national one.
Each state may agree to celebrate the holiday on the same time that the President has proclaimed it, Thanksgiving falling into this category. State legislation is also empowered to change the date of a holiday for its own special commemoration. Individual cities or towns can also decide not to celebrate a legal holiday at all. Despite these liberties the majority of the states usually agree to celebrate the holidays on the same date chosen by the rest of the nation. (fragment)