Since I’m on my soapbox…
The past few years, ever since some fella who looks like Beavis’s geriatric stunt double wrote a book, some of the news pundits have declared that there is a “War on Christmas”. If the checkout girl at the mall doesn’t bid you a “Merry Christmas” as she rings up your purchases, then her store must be part of the vast conspiracy. If the local courthouse isn’t displaying a plastic Jesus with a lightbulb shoved up it’s hindquarters, then they, too, have fallen victim to this War.
I say baloney. And I say it to both sides of the battle. To my knowledge, a Christmas tree is a Christmas tree. A decorated evergreen isn’t a traditional accompaniment to any Hannukah, Kwanzaa, or Winter Solstice celebration. (Feel free to correct me if I am wrong). Politically correct loonies can call it Spaghetti Cat for all I care, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is a Christmas tree just as surely as the treats handed out on October 31st are Halloween Candy and not Holiday Candy.
Now, for the suggestion that wishing someone a Merry Christmas might be somehow offensive to those who don’t celebrate it. Who’s skin is that thin?? I will accept any well wishes in the spirit they are intended. I don’t find it the least bit offensive to be wished a Merry Christmas, a Happy Hannukah, a Blessed Kwanzaa, or a Splendid Solstice. And anyone who does needs to grow up.
On the other hand, those who expect to be wished a Merry Christmas by every store clerk, butcher, baker, and candlestick maker need to join us all in the real world for a moment. Stores serve EVERYONE of EVERY religion or lack thereof. The girl ringing up the pair of Spanx you picked out for Aunt Myrtle hasn’t a clue as to what holiday you hold dear, and for minimum wage, frankly, she doesn’t give a damn. She isn’t there to bolster your spiritual beliefs. If you want to be in a place filled with people who all believe what you believe, there is probably a lovely church within spitting distance of the mall that will be happy to wish you a Merry Christmas and, if the timing is right, let you have a crack at some homemade goodies down in the fellowship hall.
If every person aghast that a Nativity scene isn’t being funded with tax dollars would channel the energy they expend clutching their pearls and pretending that the end is nigh into showing the world some TRUE Christmas spirit surely that would go a lot further than a faded plastic arrangement of people on the lawn.