Holidays 2011: Birth of a New Tradition

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories have been in high gear for months to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods — merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor.

Let’s make this Holiday season different. This year give the gift of genuine concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes there is!


It’s time to think outside the box.  Who says a gift needs to fit in a Chinese made shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?
  • Everyone — yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local American hair salon or barber?
  • Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.
  • Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.
  • Are you one of those extravagant givers who thinks nothing of plunking down the Benjamins on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or greens fee at the local golf course.
  • There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint.
  • Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.
  • How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy?
  • Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.
  • My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.
  • OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.
  • Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre? Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.
  • Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of lights, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or cleaning person and/or babysitter a nice BIG tip.
You see, Holidays are no longer about draining American pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Holidays are about caring about US, (i.e. you and me and U.S., our country) encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn’t imagine. THIS is the new American Holiday tradition.
Copy this and send it to everyone on your mailing list — post it on discussion groups — throw up a post on Craigslist in the Rants and Raves section in your city — send it to the editor of your local paper and radio stations, and TV news departments. This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn’t that what Holidays are  about?

I didn’t write the message above, but thank you to the person who did! It will help if you send this around or post on your blog, site or Facebook, but it will help even MORE…so much more….if you’re thinking about what you’re buying and where it comes from! If each of us makes an effort to “buy American”, it will truly make a difference!  Ask store managers for more “Made in the USA” products. If they get enough requests and we cut back on buying China made products, trust me…they will listen (eventually). Happy American Made Holidays.