Today is Sunday 15th June 2014. Seeing this month started on a Sunday, today is the third Sunday of the month of June which means in 76 countries around the world today is Father’s Day. Here in Australia where I reside, it’s not. We have to wait until the first Sunday of September to celebrate along with our neighbouring nations of New Zealand, Fiji and Papua New Guinea.
The four nations involved in our little collective do not make up the second most recognised date for Father’s Day; that going to 11 countries who celebrate it on the 19th March which is also known as St Joseph’s Day, although for two of those countries, it is celebrated within a small region whereas the rest of those two countries celebrate the day later on in the year on two separate days.
Mother’s Day is celebrated by 82 countries on the second Sunday in May. Those four nations who I mentioned celebrate Father’s Day later in the year join in on what is the most recognised date to celebrate Mother’s Day and they are joined by two further nations who recognise that date too.
There are two other dates that are both recognised by 19 countries each; that being the 8th March and the 21st March. Surprisingly, the United Kingdom celebrates on a completely different date to everyone else basing their date on the 4th Sunday in Lent.
But I think the time has come to align the dates on an international scale, and here’s my reasons why this should be done.
The world is no longer separated by oceans, seas and borders. Now that we are connected by social media we need to start using one planet mentality.
Whether it’s memes or e-cards being shared on Facebook, hashtags trending on Twitter, or photos of get-togethers on Instagram, when part of the world is celebrating something and other parts of the world aren’t, it’s annoying to be witnessing these when you would love to be but can’t participate in the ritual.
Even though Christmas Day for those “traditional” Christian faiths, and Christmas Day for some orthodox religions are days apart (25th December through to the 6th, 7th or 8th of January), the “season” of Christmas starts when the decorations go up, the lights go on, and that feeling of it being “the reason for the season” is upon us all the way to when those decoration, lights and that Christmas spirit is packed away some time in early January, and that can really be for the best part of December that the Christmas celebrations are recognised.
And trust me, social media users recognise this month long celebration to share the same old, same old memes and e-cards each and every year. But, you’ve got to love that part of tradition.
2. It’s A Small World After All – Moving To Another Country
Maybe due to someone getting a job offer and moving to another country. Maybe because of displacement due to the country of birth being constantly in warfare and turmoil. Maybe just because of the change in scenery. Whatever the reason, people tend to move from one country to another.
For my own parents who moved from England to Australia, they needed to be prepared in advance to send cards to their mothers and fathers to acknowledge their special days on different days to our own. Now, as I mentioned above, with the world being connected and it being instantaneous, an email, a Skype chat, a Facebook poke (is anyone still using those?) or writing on their wall would mean that they can all share in the special day.
3. Online Stores and Their Sales Connected To Celebrations
I know that we should think and buy local, but the reality is, the Internet has literally opened up a world of opportunity with online retailers from around the world offering competitive prices even outside the region in which the customer resides.
I have seen plenty of Facebook pages or online retailers advertising through Google Ads, banners and side bar adverts on well known websites such as newspapers and online magazines. The advertising started a few weeks back for Father’s Day and it would be nice to be able to take advantage of the sale (well for my wife to) but not 15 weeks out from our own celebration.
4. Fuck Your Religious Tie-Ins, Celebrate The Human Parents
Harsh? Yep. I’m like that. Forget celebrating Father’s Day on St Joseph’s Day. Seriously, if you’re to believe the first four chapters of the New Testament Joseph isn’t even the biological father of Jesus anyway.
Again harsh? Maybe forgetting that step-fathers or adoptive fathers are just as important as long as they’re playing a positive role in their step-child’s life? By no means. But consider this; Jesus is referred to in the Bible by many names including Christ, Lord, Logos (the Word), Son of God, Son of Man, Son of David, Lamb of God, New Adam – Second Adam – Last Adam, Light of the World, King of the Jews and Rabboni or Rabbi. Nowhere is is referred to as Son of Joseph.
Joseph is only ever mentioned as being around when Jesus was quite young so it can be taken as gospel that not only did his “real dad” forsaken Jesus, but his step-dad became absent in his life. That is by no means the sort of role model anyone should be attributing a day of celebrating great fathers with.
5. Because it just makes sense to me
I did say before I started listing these ideas that these are MY reasons, and things making sense to me is a very good argument if ever I heard one. Besides, I’m a dad and I have a say in this.
Now I did list seven things that I didn’t want for Father’s Day last year, but if I could have but one wish for the forthcoming day of celebration it would be for Australia and those other countries who came up with some other non-conformist date to conform.
Get with the program Australia.
Now, what’s the email address of our current Prime Minister? He really needs to hear my suggestion. God knows he hasn’t got anything else as important as this issue to deal with…
What do you think? Should ALL countries celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May and Father’s Day on the third Sunday in June?