Thanksgiving parades, a Jazz Age invention
Many of our most visible and cherished "traditions" don't go back very far at all, showing that traditionalism isn't about maintaining whatever there was in ye olden days, but about preserving the good innovations of earlier eras (and weeding out the bad ones).
A good example are large-scale Thanksgiving parades, where all of the major ones were founded during the 1920s and early '30s. The Macy's parade began in '24 and introduced the balloons in '27, the America's Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit started in '24 too, the Gimbels parade in Philadelphia before either of those in '20, the Hollywood Christmas Parade in '28, and Chicago's Grand Holiday Tradition parades in '34. The newest parade I could find that has been going for any time is Pittsburgh's Celebrate the Season parade, which began in 1980.
Not surprisingly we see all of these popping up during rising-crime periods, and especially during the second apocalyptic half of such a period (except for the Chicago parade that began one year after the 1933 peak in the homicide rate, but close enough). They are yet another example of a visual spectacle whose creation seems possible only during such times of mounting danger in the environment. Others are Art Deco skyscrapers, movie palaces, the carnivalesque form of the department store and mall, the automat and food court, sublime golf course architecture, public Fourth of July fireworks events, massive Christmas displays, and many others.
In contrast, the falling-crime era of the mid-century (1934-1958) brought us Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, a catalog of gentle and secular Christmas songs, and not much else in the way of holiday traditions.
By the way, I've never really felt possessed by any of those Christmas songs, so they seem over-rated to me, although I realize most people do feel warm when they come on. The only Christmas songs I've loved are "O Tannenbaum" and "Silent Night," which just so happen to have been composed during a period of rising homicide rates across Europe, in 1824 and 1818 respectively. That was during the apocalyptic second half of the Romantic-Gothic period of 1780-1830. Throw in "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson from the recent crime wave, which sounds like a Christmastime song.
In any case, even if you value a falling violence rate over cultural innovation, you should still be thankful that we have had periods of rising violence rates in the past that led to more inventions. Most experiments went nowhere, but some of them were great successes, and we're blessed to still enjoy them.