Is There Really a War on Christmas?

Is there really a war on Christmas? Let’s listen in to some of the public conversation.

1. “I hate how Christmas has gotten so commercialized these days. It didn’t used to be like that.”

Did you know that Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was written as part of a Christmas promotion for Montgomery Ward? Copywriter Robert May first wrote this story in 1939. People liked it, so in 1947, it was made into a cartoon and shown in theaters. In 1949, Gene Autry recorded the version we know today.

Rudolph the Red-Nosrudolph2ed Reindeer is a jingle. Not to mention a rather ugly story: “A reindeer with a physical abnormality is bullied by all the other  reindeer. One day the Operations Manager realizes that this abnormality could be leveraged to streamline the delivery process. The low-status reindeer is promoted, and all the bullies instantly reveal their true colors as spineless sycophants.” Now that‘s heartwarming.

This is just one example of how aspects of buying and selling have become integral to this holiday. There are many others, just like there are with any holiday. Buying and selling is what human beings do.

2. “Christmas has always been about family.”

Actually, the idea of Christmas as a celebration of domestic virtues, centered around home, hearth, and children is a very modern idea. It was invented by the late Victorians as part of their general idealization of domesticity.

In the era before that, Christmas was more like Halloween: It was a time to get drunk and engage in minor vandalism. It was also a time when it was considered allowable to barge into other people’s homes and demand food and drink. This custom, similar to trick-or-treating, was called “wassailing.” You may recall the Christmas carol that goes: “Now bring us some figgy pudding…we won’t go until we get some.” As practiced in earlier days, it was quite a bit more threatening than we would imagine it now. Imagine your home being invaded by a lot of rowdy glue sniffers who stumble around stealing your spoons while you try and scare up a six-pack of Budweiser.

3. “Christmas is the most important day of the year.”

For most of the history of the Christian Church, the most significant annual celebration was Easter, and Christmas was lumped in with Groundhog Day. This is no surprise, since the Christ’s resurrection is clearly a much more unusual and powerful activity than being born.

Additionally, December 25th was an arbitrarily assigned date. This was probably an attempt by the early church to link in with other existing festivals celebrated around the time of the solstice. This kind of mingling is called “cultural syncretism,” and it can produce very powerful cultural artifacts, like the sing-along Messiah or vegetarian pastrami sandwiches.

4. “Making everyone shol-partyay ‘Happy Holidays’ instead of “Merry Christmas’ is part of the godless, pinko commie agenda.”

If the commercialization of Christmas is a key grievance, it’s curious that one of the main battlegrounds is whether store clerks say, “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” as you leave the register with your three bags of goodies. Why does it seem so desirable to make sure that “Christmas” is part of this commercial transaction?

There are many religious holidays that happen all year long, but no one launches a lawsuit because a 7-Eleven clerk doesn’t say “Happy Day of Remembrance Commemorating the Time When the Testicles of Uranus Were Thrown Into The Sea”* while she rings up your Ding-Dongs. There’s a place for religious celebrations, and it’s called “church,’ or alternatively, “home.” Or “forest.” Or “butte.” Or “enchanted island.”

The fact is, there are a lot of good reasons to throw a party in late December. The world is a tough place, and the moment in the year when we’re facing months of darkness is the perfect time for a pick-me-up.

So get together, in your churches and your planetariums, your Macy’s and your neighborhood watering holes. Let’s say “no” to darkness, and “yes” to celebrations. Go and God Bless.

* This is a real mythological event!

©2010 PoliticalLoudmouth

——————————-

Advertisements

48 Comments

  • IT didn’t mention the fact they
    really don’t know WHEN JESUS was born—and that the Catholic church took over the winter solstice from the Celtic people and turned it into CHRIST MASS celebration instead of a pagan celebration. As a Christian I celebrate Christmas but I do recognize the facts that He was most likely born in the summer not winter….and I really do say Merry Christmas to people but if someone says to me Happy Holidays I tell them thank you…..because as Christians we should LOVE everyone and respect them as we want to be respected…..I am tired of all the wars and fighting in the NAME OF GOD, when GOD is a GOD of love and peace……

    • Actually, the Catholic Church started celebrating the Annunciation (when the Angel Gabriel told Mary she was to conceive) on March 25 a long time before Christmas was celebrated. When the Church started celebrating the birth of Christ, they chose Dec 25 because it falls 9 months after March 25.

  • It is pretty obvious from the comments that many people do not even approach understanding the purpose of this post. Sad.

  • I feel so sad for all the comments made against celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. The bible teaches us at end times people will not hear or see the truth,, the end times are near and when you are left behind I hope you will remember this; For who shall believe in there heart and confess with there mouth that Jesus Christ is the only son of God and died on Calavry Cross for my sins shall be saved”

  • I’ve not had vegetarian pastrami, but I have a hard time believing it’s as delicious as vegetarian reubens. Maple-glazed tempeh with Veganaise sauce, caramelized onions, homemade sauerkraut and fresh-baked rye bread, yum yum!

  • Say or do what you want or believe,I was taught very young to believe The Holiest Night is Christmas Eve when Jesus was born, presents & Santa have gotten out of hand ,but children love it just like any other holiday with perks & I say “MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!”…everyone has their right to beleive or do wht they want…

  • The article forgets to mention is that Christmas is a 12 day holiday season that begins on December 25th and ends on January 5th (the 12th Night). My wish is that people would keep a blessed Advent and celebrate the 12 days of Christmas followed by the Feast of The Epiphany – to truly understand the whole meaning of the birth of Christ.

  • It’s interesting that hard core Christians seem to be driving this. Nobody else cares. Shut up about it. Everyone else is celebrating their respective holidays, for instance Hanukkah is coming up in a few days, and the tons of others with over a thousand different deities. Christians, get a clue! Everyone is tired of you chucking tantrums about not being allowed to ram your religion down other people’s throats. It’s annoying.
    I personally like the (pagan) tree. I like making the special food. (not so much because it’s Christmas but the ingredients are seasonal),
    I don’t like the artificial marketing of a need to buy crap just to buy crap for people as a result of Christmas. I do like to be reminded of what I don’t like about society which involves people being manipulated like stupid sheep into consumerism by all of these huge corporations, that you won’t be happy unless you ditch all your electronic widgits that you paid mookoo bucks for 6 months ago for the latest UPDATED widgits for more bucks that you probably can’t afford anyway.
    I like the idea of Christmas. Decorations, Happy people, family get togethers, shopping, lights, food, more food, gifts….What the reality is, is frazzled nerves, insane schedules and party planning, Christmas lists for relatives you don’t even know are alive at this point, credit card balances through the roof that you’re lucky you can pay off before next Christmas, toys that you KNOW will be in the trash in less than a month…the list is endless…
    So, to all you bible thumping types: Have a Happy Ho Ho! AND GET OVER IT!

    • “I like the idea of Christmas. Decorations, Happy people, family get togethers, shopping, lights, food, more food, gifts….What the reality is, is frazzled nerves, insane schedules ”

      I work in retail (at a major US retail outlet, so I’ll see thousands of people between now and xmas). I’ve ordered pins that say “Peace on Earth, goodwill to all”. I intend to wear them ironically, for the very reality that you’ve listed.

  • Some people seem to play fast and loose with the term “war”. If anybody diverges even slightly from their view of the world and has somehow fallen out of lockstep with their so-called traditions, they’re at war. If somebody wishes you a happy anything, be grateful for the positive thought and go about your business, instead of whining that the world is out to get you. If you’re ever exposed to real war, you may well discover that getting your feelings hurt is not the worst thing that can happen.

  • Many of us humans share the opinion that there is no eternal life, no heaven or hell, no eternal soul and; Jesus was a human being who could not do miracles. That story was made up by his followers to start a movement, and an institution that collected money, 60 years after Jesus died, until the present. Christmas came from pagan practices. Read “Christmas” history. Many of us humans have. There is no war on christmas – We just don’t buy it.

  • Its always wonderful to see all these people celebrating a pagan festival.

    Seriously though, how do you rationalize all those blatantly pagan ideas, as somehow magically being “christian”?

    Presents under the tree – Originally seen as gifts to the gods of fertility, without which, there would be eternal winter!
    Decorating the tree – ^^^ ditto…
    Carolling – See the article about “wassailing.”
    Kissing under Mistletoe – More about fertility…
    Yule log – Fertility again

    Noticing a trend here?

  • It’s profoundly anti-Semitic, considering the other religious holiday that’s widely celebrated at this time of year in our part of the world is Hanukkah. Maybe Diwali in some areas? Kwanzaa if you expand it to non-religious holidays? So make that anti-Semitic and racist too.

    • Diwali is between mid-Oct and mid-Nov (I almost included it in my own list, below). Occasionally, ‘Eid-al Fitr (the breaking of fast of Ramadan, the holy month on the Islamic calendar) will fall into this range, though.

      *sits back and waits for the anti-Islam comments to start*

    • Marcia!! YUM!! Those sound delish! And with nacho ceeehse doritos?? mmmmm!! And the toffee bar cookies sound great!! Thanks for sharing the recipes and stories! And of course we sould love as many recipes as you want to share!! MMMMM!!

  • The real war on Christmas started during Puritan times..yes, those pilgrims that established this “Christian” nation, the “founding fathers” that are the worshiped as the source of all our traditions, hated all forms of Christmas celebrations so much, one could get fined or put in stocks for saying “Merry Christmas”, having a Christmas tree, or exchanging presents. People just don’t know their history! If we were to be really true to the ideals of our founders, we would have no decorations, no trees, no presents, and no Christmas music nor would we have a day off to even celebrate Christmas (the Christmas holiday was not established until the 1800’s).

    • LOL You want to know the main reason many people say “Happy Holidays”? It’s not some secret secular war on your ever so sacred holiday.

      Thanksgiving
      Kwanzaa
      Channukah
      Yule
      Christmas
      New Year’s Eve/Day

      ALL holidays. ALL occurring within the time frame between Thanksgiving and NYD.

      Btw, why are you clinging so stubbornly to a phony birthday (Christ wasn’t born in our December), with extreme pagan roots/ties. Focus on the Resurrection (you know, the TRULY important Holy Day).

      Also, get over yourself.

  • I wish this could be read on right wing radio three times a day from Thanksgiving to New Year’s.

    So sick fo their whining. Feh.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s