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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Why "Happy Holidays" Does Not Offend Me

The War on Christmas, nearly as important to some as the Global War on Terror, has been waging in earnest this holiday season (oops). Bill O'Reilly and the other Fox guys are on one side. And it seems as if Jon Stewart and the Comedy Central goofballs are on the other. I am squarely in the middle.

While I certainly do not want my religious liberties to be infringed upon, I do not think it is a big deal if the guy at Old Navy says "Happy Holidays" to me while I am checking out. Aren't we as a culture celebrating holidays (plural), not just one holiday? Doesn't Target serve people who celebrate ...

Christmas
Hanukkah
Kwanza
Ramadan
New Years
Festivus?

- What's the big deal?

- And a larger question - Why do Christians always seem to be the garbage police, on patrol, constantly looking for ways to be offended?

- And a logical question - Why does the remnant mentality prevail so much in American Christianity when 84% of American identify themselves as followers of Jesus? I had a lady in the store yesterday who told me that she wrote down every time in the Bible that God intervened for his outnumbered people. I wanted to tell her that we weren't outnumbered, but instead I said, "Merry Christmas."

-And the ultimate question - Did Jesus die on the cross so that we can feel more comfortable while we are buying clothes we don't need made by impoverished children in the developing world?

It might just be me, but the War on Christmas seem to be another case of misplaced "Christian" priorities. What do you think?

11 comments:

BillionDollarBaby said...

Oh, thank you so much! Finally a Christian speaking out on this topic who takes the whole thing for what it is... nothing. Since when was shopping at Target part of the Christian Christmas celebration anyway? Happy Holidays to you and yours.

kingsjoy said...

Robb, I agree. You and I can still be (and act like) Christians regardless of retail marketing trends. Sheez...

I am wondering, however, when we're gonna start seeing various artist compilations of favorite Kwanza and Ramadan tunes? :)

Robb said...

David,

Ask and ye shall receive.

Happy Kwanza

A said...

I agree completely.

I do think it is unnecessary to call a Christmas tree a Holiday tree in order not to offend, because after all, it is a Christmas tree!

But your point is right. There are other holidays being celebrated right now, and Christians should be ok with Happy Holidays when not specifically referring to something inherantly Christmas.

kingsjoy said...

Thanks, Robb. Happy Kwanzaa right back at ya. Can't wait to learn my first Kwanzaa Carol :)

klasieprof said...

Just got my "Biblical Worldview" magazine..(from American Vision).
I was glancing through it..and Yes..honestly..a Movie review of teh Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)...and the "Christian take" on it..
"The concept of repenting while there is still time is a major theme here, and the idea of being content with whatever you have.(Phil 4)."
I dont know..sometimes Cant a Movie..'
JUST BE A MOVIE???

jdub said...

So over the past couple of days several people have come into my store and asked specifically where the "Merry Christmas" paper or stationary is. Well, when I say several I mean at least 5 people today, they were shocked when they found out that we didn't carry any and that they were going to tell their friends to boycott us like they were boycotting Target!

I admit that I lost my temper with one guest and was quick to say that we do not sell paper to just Christians, and that not everyone should be forced to worship Jesus, then I played the pastor card and suggested that she be a little more loving during this time of year. She appologized! And bought a pack of "happy holidays" paper.

jdub said...

On the OC they celebrate Chrismakah!

Just saw an MTV ad saying Happy Chriskwananakahdon.

I think that might be a better way of saying Happy Holidays.

Kevin said...

i dont know i guess i understand both sides. should we be forced to say happy holidays versus merry christmas? i guess i am getting tired of the extreme sides. its like the arminians versus the calvins, well not exactly. both are extremes. the point is we should feel free to say whatever the heck we want to, merry christmas or happy holidays or happy hannaka or however its spelled.

all in all i think there is stupidity and validity to the opposing sides. but again i agree this is america you can celebrate whatever holiday you like and you should be able to. once again the christian circle puts their foots in their mouths and speaks on behalf of us all.

klasieprof said...

OH OH>>NOW the "SIN" word has entered the debate..AND I've gotten not less than FIVE forwarded emails about hte American Family Assoc. 'christmas FIGHT"...That "they are winning." AND the "HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS" ad, REALLY emphazes a show coming out for adoptive and Foster kids...I think on CBS next week....

Heres walmart: (awwckk for you them thar in ark-kansas)
Wal-Mart Confronted on 'Happy Holidays'

By TOM CHORNEAU
Associated Press Writer
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- A group of religious protesters demonstrated outside a Wal-Mart superstore Saturday, hoping to turn away customers by calling attention to the retailer's decision to use "happy holidays" rather than "merry Christmas" in its seasonal advertising.
"I believe in Christ, and I don't like the use of 'xmas' or the use of 'happy holidays,'" said Steven Van Noy, 39, as he left the store loaded down with packages. "The bottom line is that they had what I needed at Wal-Mart, so I went to Wal-Mart to buy it."

Controversy over the secularization of Christmas is nothing new, but this year religious groups are publicly taking on retailers who have decided to tone down the religious aspects of the holiday in their store decorations and promotional material.
In an online petition, the American Family Association recently gathered more than 500,000 signatures asking Target to include Christmas in its promotions. Stores such as Sears and Wal-Mart are facing boycotts.

....She said a promotion set to run from mid-November to early January was simply misunderstood: its slogan is "home for the holidays."

"It was a matter of choosing a slogan that carries through the entire season," Wyatt said. "The signs went up before Thanksgiving and won't be taken down until after New Year's. The idea was to focus on the family."


"It is insulting that Wal-Mart has chosen to ignore the reason for the season," Otterstad said. "Taking the word 'Christmas' out of the holiday implies there's

something sinful about it. ... This is a part of our culture."

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Josh Powers said...

"-And the ultimate question - Did Jesus die on the cross so that we can feel more comfortable while we are buying clothes we don't need made by impoverished children in the developing world?"

I think you're right. There are probably better things than clothes we can be putting our money into. (Although I'm awfully glad that some kid makes some money when I buy clothes.) Also, I think it's about time we got rid of our child-labor laws on this side of the pond - kids aren't learning much in school anyway.