Merry Christmas to All I would like everyone reading this to do something nice for someone you normally wouldn't be nice to today or tomorrow. It will make the world a better place. I promise. Merry Christmas.
Usually, I like to do stories about the war on Christmas... or as some more careful, or more skeptical people put it, the alleged war on Christmas (and this year they might actually be right). I just haven't noticed that much public censorship of Christmas this year. It could be that those who would see Christmas banished are laying low after sensing too much resistance to them in the last few years; or maybe it could be that we are actually winning; or maybe they're right and we are imagining it (or blowing things out of proportion).
The San Joaquin Valley school district in California voted to actually refer to the Christmas and Easter vacations as the Christmas and Easter vacations. In protest, a man lit himself on fire (that seems very spiteful; at least he didn't hurt anyone else)(1).
In other news, an AP-AOL poll found that "[m]ost people think it's OK to have Christmas decorations at public buildings, even though it occasionally draws protests and lawsuits."(2) So Christmas might not be in any real danger of being banished. But on the other hand, the article did acknowledge protests and lawsuits against public Christmas displays and that the term "Happy Holidays" is more politically correct than "Merry Christmas."(3)
If the news writers are aware that holiday-neutral greetings are politically correct and that Christmas decorations prompt lawsuits, then it should be safe to say that a political anti-Christmas movement exists, despite protestations to the contrary.
In all candor, though, (this year, at least) it looks like the concept of a full-fledged war on Christmas may arise from some commentators' tendencies to exaggerate the significance of some isolated events. So rest easy and enjoy the holiday with your friends and family; after all, that's what it's really about, isn't it? Don't let a few busybodies spoil the mood.
Again, merry Christmas to all!!
(1) Associated Press. "Man sets self on fire to protest school move," Contra Costa Times, 2006 December 24, para. 1, http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/news/state/16311682.htm.
(2) Lester, Will. "Poll: Christmas tradition trumps trendy" (AP), USA Today, 2006 December 24, para. 1, http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-12-24-christmas-holiday-habits_x.htm
(3) Ibid. para. 2.
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