Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Christmas is Coming...Batten Down The Hatches!

Yes, Christmas is coming, that means we'll probably be treated to more of the "War On Christmas" crap we went through last year courtesy of Bill O'Reilly. I love the myth that it's an attack on Christmas when retailers call a Christmas tree a Holiday tree. Bill, aren't you a capitalist? Should not the retailers try to expand the market on trees to consumers who celebrate Hanukkah, Kwansaa, and other holidays?

One of his targets was funny enough, Target stores. He rightfully attacked them for eliminating the Salvation Army bell ringers, but to be honest with you they can be annoying, especially at the entrance at a stand alone Big Box retailer.

He then attacked them for "forcing" their associates to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". Bill, I have news for you, unless it's December 25th (The errornious day of Christ's birth) it's not Christmas and Target isn't open. Jewish people shop too, and if you said "Merry Christmas" to a Jewish person, it could lead to an uncomfortable situation. I'm just saying.

He also said they had no "religious" cards available which was utterly false. I did a very unscientific research project, I closed my eyes and grabbed a card and lo and behold it was one that featured the Nativity. I did it once again and it featured the "Christmas" star. The third time I grabbed it it was a secular Peanuts card without Linus sermonizing.

Last year as, I was shopping, I heard some nasty exchanges of "Merry Christmas" between retailers and customers as though they were oppressed people trying desperately to save a a dying tradition. This is absurd if Christmas was eliminated, most retailers would go bankrupt lacking enough revenue to survive. No one is killing Christmas.

Of course, Bill O'Reilly attributes the "War On Christmas" to the "Politically Correct" (Whatever That Means) crowd. He's offended by "Happy Holidays" and even "Season Greetings" and thinks this is a recent phenomenon. Oh contrare. I am 40 years old and some of my earliest memories involve seeing Season Greetings banners hovering over Main Streets of towns across New Jersey, it was an annual ritual that had to have occurred before I was born. That's a long time Bill, for a war to be going on without your notice.

This routine of Bill O'Reilly is really about taking what is already a Christian dominated country and shoving it down the throats of those who don't celebrate the birth of carpenter from 2000 years ago. In recent years I have noticed a general progression towards Nativity scenes in public places. They are more readily available now than in anytime in my life. No one is stopping you from celebrating Christmas. No one is stopping you from spending thousands of dollars on electricity illuminating your joy at celebrating a carpenter/philosopher. I've seen the Nativity scene in more places than ever. Curiously, the one place I see it less is in front of churches. It used to be it was always in front of a church but for some reason I don't see it as much. I could be wrong, but if Bill has a complaint he should start in the churches.

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