Politics The “War on Christmas” War Continues
posted by December 19 at 16:40 PMon
Apropos of all the “War on Christmas” nonsense that went on at SeaTac while I was away (shorter version of Josh’s column: Taking down the Christmas trees at SeaTac was a smart move because the Port of Seattle was implicitly endorsing Christianity; putting them back up was a wimpy capitulation to a rash of loud anti-Semitic, pro-Christian complaints), I’d like to offer a brief anecdote from my trip to Denver.
First, some context: Denver is drowning in a sea of Christmas: Lights, Christmas trees, carols, angels, and mangers as far as the eye can see. Still, I was somewhat shocked when I entered the Denver headquarters of the Regional Transportation District (the equivalent of our Sound Transit) and was hit with an onslaught of publicly funded Christmas cheer: A recording of explicitly religious carols played loudly in the foyer; Christmas decorations decked every surface; and Christmas cookies were piled to the rafters. After our interview, the light rail program director addressed employees, who were having a traditional Christmas potluck. Her first words? “Merry Christmas.”
Still, plenty of people continue to believe there’s a war on Christmas (fought mainly, of course, by pushy Jews who won’t keep their traps shut during the three-month-long Christmas onslaught). Take this editorial from AgapePress, the media mouthpiece of the American Family Association:
What I resent, and a whole lot of Americans resent, is when in the name of multi-culturalism, diversity and tolerance, we began to sacrifice traditions that have made America great in the first place.
For example, news services across the country reported this earlier in the week: “Zogby polling shows an overwhelming majority (95 percent) say they are not offended by being greeted with a ‘Merry Christmas’ while shopping, including 98 percent for weekly Wal-Mart shoppers. But greet them with a ‘Happy Holidays,’ and 46 percent say they take offense.”
The reason that 46 percent of those surveyed take offense is because they are Christmas shopping, not holiday shopping, and everyone knows this. Families don’t give each other presents on Thanksgiving Day. Kids don’t run downstairs on New Year’s morning seeing what awaits them under the holiday tree. The Christmas-gift buying season is what keeps the American retail business in business.
These numbers also mean that most citizens want Christmas to maintain the special place it has long held in the American heart. We don’t want to see Christmas melt into a generic “holiday season” or “winter celebration” some hard-core secularists and atheists want to see happen.
Now I am about to give you an example of how the political correctness / multi-culturalism movement seeks to remove the Christian message about Christmas from the scene. One of the things it has done recently is attempt to elevate Hanukkah and Kwanzaa as if they were equal to Christmas in American cultural relevance. They are not, but because we have been brainwashed with political correctness for a number of years now — and because we are fearful of being labeled racist or as anti-Jewish — many people in our country feel compelled to mention Hanukkah and Kwanzaa in the same sentence with Christmas. In America, Christmas — as a holiday — has always been in a league of its own. It points to the message of Christ and to our Christian heritage, and that is what the multi-culturalists and the politically-correct crowd want to change.
The editorialist goes on to repeat the most popular canard associated with this whole “Christmas”/”holiday” debate:
Another interesting fact here is that Christians do not consider the tree to have any spiritual significance. Especially in the same way a Jew looks at a menorah for instance. A Nativity scene would be the equivalent to the Christian. The tree is simply a traditional decoration that many Americans use to mark the Christmas season. Most people consider them just something nice to look at.
OK, it may be true that most people think Christmas trees are “nice to look at.” And it’s certainly true that Christmas is a bigger holiday to Christians than Hanukkah is for Jews. But whether Christians consider it to have religious significance or not, a Christmas tree is a CHRISTmas tree. It is, inevitably, a religious symbol—because it’s a symbol of a religious holiday. Symbols of Christmas are already EVERYWHERE—in our department stores, decked on our light poles, in our workplaces. Public spaces (like the airport) should be a bastion of secularism in the midst of our overwhelmingly non-secular society.