Monday, December 14, 2015

Tis' the Season to Take Offense

Atlanta, GA – You don’t have to like it. You might be an atheist that believes in neither God nor Santa Claus. You might be a part of the roughly 8% of Americans, according to Gallup, who will not be celebrating Christmas this year. You might be one of those of who gets offended when somebody says Merry Christmas, or ho ho, ho, but, you can’t deny, its Christmas time again, and more than a third of the world celebrates it as a holiday.
The war over Christmas has been raging for two thousand years, ever since it’s first protractor, Herod, tried to nip it in the bud by mass infanticide. Fortunately the antics of the anti-Christmas crowd have mellowed since those days, now relegated to Starbucks, (if they are indeed anti-Christmas), only coloring their cups red rather than saying Merry Christmas, Buick calling it a “Holiday Sale,” and a large school in Italy canceling their Christmas Concert because it might offend Muslims.
Christians and others who simply enjoy the greatest holiday ever have fought back in various ways. At Starbucks they have retaliated by telling the people at the counter their name is “Merry Christmas,” so that when their order is ready, the server will be forced to call out “Merry Christmas” for all coffee lovers to hear. In Italy, at that school of a 1,000 or so students, where the principle canceled the Christmas Concert, renamed it “Winterval,” and planned it for January, so as not to offend any of the 250 students who aren’t Christians, the Catholic Church and the prime minister of Italy lambasted the principle, who resigned in shame, as even the non-Christians of the school complained, saying they liked Christmas.
Of course, Christmas in America does have its proponents in the mainstream. Ted Cruz, who sent out an email to supporters to remind them that he feels "real Americans" don’t care about offending people, and so they should say “Merry Christmas.” And there is Wal Mart, where every aisle, it seems, greets you with a massive placard crying “Merry Christmas!”
In past years, Americans have made strides in various places against possible hate speech, attempting to defend those who love Christmas from those who get offended because a baby was born to save their eternal soul from hell. In Texas, a few years ago, a law was passed protecting anyone who says Merry Christmas from discrimination.
There are those who say that there is a war on Christmas. That may be true, as a friend of mine tells me her boss has ordered her not to say “Merry Christmas” because someone might get offended. She has to instead say “Happy Holidays,” like the people wouldn’t know what holiday she might be implying. But it would seem really that there is a war on sanity. If you curl up into a ball and cry because you see a nativity scene, or if Santa, while giving you free gifts, says “Merry Christmas,” you post on twitter that he’s a hater, you have problems. If you are such a person, I believe there are still mental hospitals alive and well across this country. You should really check one out.

Merry Christmas everybody.
Andrew C. Abbott

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