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Yes, from the ruler who brought you "the Holocaust never happened" comes a new edict to be strictly adhered to by all good Iranians: no Valentine's Day gifts or any promotion of the day. It seems that Iran no longer wants anything to do with this decadent, perverted Western tradition and has thus banned the holiday.
Reuters obtained a memo from the country's printing workers union that said, in part: "Printing and producing any products related to Valentine's Day, including posters, brochures, advertising cards, boxes with the symbols of hearts, half-hearts, red roses and any activities promoting this day are banned. Authorities will take legal action against those who ignore the ban."
Former North Pole Mayor Burgermeister Meisterburger would've been proud. (The Burgermeister famously declared "No more toys!" during the Rankin Bass animated holiday special "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." It says here that it's quite ironic that the Valentine edict is cartoonishly ridiculous.)
The head of the union defended the government's action. "Our country has an ancient civilization and various days to honor kindness, love and affection," Ali Nikou Sokhan told Reuters. Alas, a quick scan of the Iranian calendar didn't yield any such official holidays, but that doesn't mean we doubt Mr. Sokhan.
All hope is not lost. Oil Nationalization Day is March 20 in Iran. Perhaps you can send that special someone a crude greeting card.
In all seriousness, we have nothing against Iran or its people. However, outlawing a holiday that celebrates love—regardless of the country that originated said holiday—is outright absurd.
CHEESE LOVE: Wisconsinites pour their hearts and souls into three things: cheese, printing and their beloved Green Bay Packers. Though not necessarily in that order. So, imagine the festive atmosphere that permeated Quad/Graphics' Lomira, WI, facility in late January, when the company was contracted to produce the official NFL Super Bowl program.