Saturday, December 24, 2005

OBSERVATION: To whom it may concern: Merry Christmas!

Shhhh. I am about to give away a big secret. I know this will come as a shock to many people who follow current events in the media.

Okay! Here it is. Put your ear closer so I can whisper. “Christmas is a Christian holiday.” You didn’t hear that? I said … "Christmas is a Christian holiday." Not yet? OKAY. “CHRISTMAS IS A CHRISTIAN HOLIDAY!!!” So there. I said it. Yep, it is also a national holiday -- even in the god-loathing season of political correctness.

We all get a lot of time off from work to celebrate Christmas. I know we have piled on Hanukah, a Jewish holiday of second or third level theological relevancy, and we even invented that silly Kwanzaa thing to make sure we maintain our segregated society. We can sort of edge in Ramadan. But still … the official holiday is Christmas. And furthermore, the brightly lit shrubbery in so many bay windows is a … CHRISTMAS tree. It is not a holiday tree any more than the Jewish Menorah is a holiday candelabra.

Frankly, I think it is cool to have a season of love and caring incorporating all the religions --- and any atheists who care to be loved (not easy).

The political correctness Nazis are doing there best to emulsify our heritages into some sort of gray blob of secular celebration – squeezing out the rich colors and nuances of our ethnic differences. The major assault has been on religion. It is still kosher (if you will) to celebrate each others traditional foods, costumes and secular customs. But when it comes to sharing each other’s religions, we act as if church-going is a criminal activity.

Political correctness makes the simple things needlessly difficult. I am Christmas guy, but like most of us, I am very okay with a little common sense and etiquette. I send “happy holiday” cards to my list because we have many friends not of the Christian faith. If I meet a fellow Christian, I offer a hearty “Merry Christmas.” If I meet a Jewish friend, I offer a “Happy Hanukah.” If I do not know, then I wish them a, “Hey, have a great holiday and a Happy New Year.”

It is not courtesy, however, that underlies the attempts to de-Christian my holiday. There is nothing inappropriate, or offensive, in offering Christian symbols – even religious ones – as an expression of the season in commercial locations and government venues. Christmas carols should be heard in any public venue, and I don’t mean just Jingle Bells and I Saw Mother Kissing Santa Claus. And not only do I not take offense at having the nativity scene stand alongside a Menorah, I think it is wonderful. It is exactly the kind of respect and sharing that creates our sense of an overarching culture, bring our differences into harmony.

The public arean was never meant to be the fallow ground that separates us, but the common ground that unites us. Political correctness? Bah! Humbug!!

No comments: