Monday, December 27, 2004

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays to you all.

Yes, Happy Holidays.

God bless you, my conservative family and friends. I've specifically avoided discussing world events and other controversial topics in this blog so as not to offend any of you. Even though I strongly disagree with your politics, I love each and every one of you anyway, and out of respect I refrain from demanding explanations for all sorts of things that frustrate and annoy me. (Unless, of course, we're in person and can have a reasonable discussion, in which case you might want to be prepared for, "WHAT ARE YOU PEOPLE THINKING???")

Anyway, back to the point. I try to be respectful of you. So please show ME some respect and stop giving me crap about saying "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas" when I'm talking to non-Christians and people I don't know well.

WARNING.....I'm going to rant here. Mom, you should stop reading and just wait for another entry in a few days.

I do not buy into that Bill O'Reilly crap about how Christmas is being persecuted by politically correct secularists. Something like 85%+ of Americans call themselves Christian, and Christmas is a legal national holiday since the mid 20th century. It is totally ridiculous to argue that a holiday observed by the overwhelming majority of Americans AS WELL AS OUR GOVERNMENT is in any danger of being run out of town by the minority who either don't celebrate it or who just would rather not make such a big deal of it.

In my assessment, this is a ridiculous argument based in belligerent rudeness. What does it hurt us to respect someone else's fundamental religious beliefs by slightly altering a greeting? Is Christ really all that put out about this? Seems to me he's probably more annoyed with the gross materialism and ecological disrespect of giving a Hummer or a Lincoln Navigator as a gift to honor his birthday, but perhaps I misinterpret scripture here.

If a colleague gets a new haircut and I'm thinking, "Wow...that new 'do actually makes you look human!" do I SAY that? No.

When I invite someone to dinner and I know they're a vegetarian, do I serve big juicy steaks as the main entree? No.

Instead, I respect others' feelings and beliefs, and I adjust my response accordingly. So what's wrong with saying "Happy Holidays" as a way of greeting/farewell (as in "you're probably celebrating something in the next few weeks, so enjoy yourself") ? That's what most of us really mean anyway. Why not make this minor revision? It's just basic etiquette. (Note...if you're one of the people who really do mean "Hooray! Christ is born to save the world!" with your "Merry Christmas", then good for you, and I wish you luck with your evangelizing as you invite the non-believers into the celebration.)

"Happy Holidays" is a nice way of sending out some positive vibe in the world. For me, I'm saying "Peace on Earth, baby! Let's be kinder to each other! Here's something happy we can agree on!"

So lighten up, all you "Happy Holidays"-haters. There's no need for ballot initiatives on this. Perhaps we can focus on the SPIRIT of Christ's birth, not just the FACT of it.

There. I'm done now. If you still think we need to discuss this, then give me a call or drop me a line and I'm willing to listen. Just don't bring up Kwanzaa...it's a red herring holiday, and you know it. At least have the guts to use a real argument.

1 comment:

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