Wednesday, December 07, 2005

You ruin every Festivus!

So apparently William Donohue and his happy ilk are just Rumplestiltskin-style angry that the President has decided to sign off on his holiday cards with the phrase, "Happy Holidays." But they're not just pissed off about that, they're mad that stores are more often eschewing "Merry Christmas" for it's alliterative vague seasonal greeting. The American Family Association, who could probably give PeTA a run for their money in the "most annoyingly sanctimonious organization" category, have even launched a boycott against Target because the discount store won't hang Christmas-specific banners from their very reverend rafters.

Most of us probably give a big eye-roll to folks so PC they have to call a Christmas tree a "holiday tree." But these guys are pathetic.

Donohue, Wildmon and others feel that removing the word "Christmas" from retail stores and greeting cards somehow takes the "Christ" out of "Christmas." I'll get to the greeting cards later, but first the stores: WHAT? Have these people ever been in a mall at Christmastime? The vast majority of this crap may be wrapped and go under a Christmas tree and be delivered with the line, "Merry Christmas," but I would place money on it that most of the X-Box 360s to be opened this December 25 were purchased with nary a thought of an impoverished Nazarene baby of questionable paternity. In fact, it seems the best way to preserve the dignity of Christ's name is to dissociate it with retail mayhem.

As for the greeting cards: Come off it, jerks. It's their own damned business what cards they pick and how they sign off on them. I tend to vary it up between Merry Christmas, Season's Greetings and Happy Holidays, myself. Sure, they're choice is probably more political than mine, but that's their business. (I can't believe I'm defending anything this president has done.) Some people - obviously not Donohue or his cronies - actually have cherished friends who profess different faiths, or none at all. While it seems a non-Christian chafing at "Merry Christmas" in a card from a Christian friend is a bit hypersensitive, actually recognizing in your salutation that not everyone celebrates what you do, is in itself something of a gift.

(Incidentally, why do none of my Jewish friends give me a Hannukah card? Just because i don't celebrate it doesn't mean I want to be excluded. Every year I buy postage stamps celebrating Eid, Hannukah, Kwanzaa and Christmas - both secular and holy - and none of my non-Christian friends ever responds with a blessing from their tradition. It kinda blows. Note to non-Christians: "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Easter" is actually - despite the "Religious WRong" in this country - meant as a quick sharing of the warm fuzzy we feel at these times of year. OH! I do remember a Jewish coworker this year extolled, "Happy Resurrection" to another coworker of mine. I don't know if she was joking or what, but I assumed she was Christian until I discovered later she wasn't. Why do we never express any measure of celebration for eachother in each other's respective religious traditions? If you hold something dear, and I hold you dear, I should say, "Happy Hannukah" or "Blessed Eid" or whatever. But I digress ...)

Essentially, Donohue, Wildmon, Robertson, Fallwell, all these folks who are more concerned with how the President signs off on his holiday cards than how he signs off on bills, should probably take a knee in prayer. If they honestly believe chiming "Merry Christmas" is more indicative of one's faith in God through Christ than how one spends his or her money, how one treats his/her less fortunate neighbor, or how one governs, then it's no wonder non-believers call Christians hypocrites.


Virginia Gal said...

I saw this story on the network news last night. I too thought, "oh lord, give me a break." Don't these so-holy Christians have anything else to get into a tiff about? What a sign of affluency in this country, that we are arguing about our President's Christmas Card. Besides the card has a verse from the Old Testament, which is pretty religious to me (though not one religion specific).
I agree about the retail aspect too, not much spirituality in fighting for a Tickle Me Elmo.

Virginia Gal said...

Ugh, I just wrote this nice thing about your post and stupid blogspot lost it!

I agree with you - these holier than thou religious types annoy me. Who cares what the President puts on his card? Criky! Isn't there anything else to argue about it?