Merry (War on) Christmas

Merry Christmas!

There, I did it. They will be here to take me away soon. Actually, they probably be here soon (with a nice snug white coat) but not for the reason given to us by the talking heads on Fox. It is that time of year again. Just like sending fruitcake to unsuspecting relatives, the yearly tradition known as THE WAR ON CHRISTMAS has begun.

christmas_tree_banned
Original image by Deleket (Jojo Mendoza)

For those who do not know of this tradition, it is observed in the following manner. The talking heads on Fox, usually lead by Bill O’Reilly, show us examples of businesses and local governments not properly observing Christmas or worse yet, uttering the words “Happy Holidays.” We get angry and outraged because some businesses and local governments chose to not observe Christmas properly.

I AM SO ANGRY THAT A LIBRARY IN CALIFORNIA CHOSE TO NOT PUT UP A CHRISTMAS TREE!!!

Sorry… I got carried away.

This brings up the question, is there truly a “war on Christmas?” One can see that there is an increased secularism in regard to the holiday season. However, that does not prove that there is an organized attempt to bring an end to Christmas. Christians are not the only group that observes a holy day near the winter solstice. It makes sense for businesses to acknowledge that fact. Frankly, saying “Happy Advent, Christmas, Hanukkah, Hogmanay, Kwanzaa, Holiday, or winter solstice” is awkward which is why we abbreviate it to “Happy Holidays.”

One of the common themes in the “war on Christmas” is the evil liberals are out there lurking and waiting to replace Jesus with a bowl of spaghetti. The evidence to the claim is that there are atheists who do actively seek to ban all religious displays. These individuals are a minority and I would not be surprised that they represent a minority within those who identify as liberals. The claim that liberals are trying to ban Christmas is incorrect as it projects the views of a subset as being that of all liberals.

If there is little evidence to support that there is an organized attack on Christmas, one should ask why does Fox and gang promote a “war on Christmas?” I believe the reason is that the “war on Christmas” is an appeal to outrage. The talking points are intended to create anger. Fox wants us to be angry. Anger makes it easier to control the masses and to distract from the real issues that need to be discussed. Anger leads to the dark side which as some would say, voting for Republicans.

When it comes to a claim that there is a “war on Christmas,” one should remain calm and evaluate the claim logically. In most cases, it will not be part of some conspiracy. Let us save the outrage for those things that are truly important issues.

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