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Holiday Correctness

We’ve had a lot of agonizing over the disappearance of Christmas. It’s not just that PC holds that you wish people “Happy Holidays” or that we spend more time shopping for gifts than we do honoring the reason for the season. It’s also the political manipulations.

Consider, for example, our President, who was supposed to delay signing the tax bill so that Medicare extensions would be funded in 2018, and instead stole a march on the signing so that he could reap millions of dollars in tax benefits. The next day he was the centerpiece of a call-in show for little children wishing to share holiday cheer with him. An editorial from a conservative media outlets extolled the virtues of a president who puts Christmas “front and center.”

That was the last straw for me. How can anyone use Jesus, who came to die for us, to legitimize a man that systematically sacrifices others for personal gain?

My Christmas plans were completely upended by a cold. I backed out of Church, and the family dinner organized by my brother. But after reading the news about Trump, I resolved to go up to Santa Barbara yesterday morning to wish my friends – at a safe distance – “Merry Christmas.”

They are a culturally astute community, and I received different reactions. Most went with the flow, responding “Merry Christmas” back to me, but I was harangued by one who listed all the other options, Kwanzaa and Hanukkah among them.

She probably found me obstinate, but this is how I feel about the matter:

When I say “Merry Christmas,” I am offering my joy to you from its authentic source. My heart opens and love flows out of it. If you celebrate Kwanzaa, well then, wish me a “Happy Kwanzaa.” You’ll find me wishing you “Happy Kwanzaa” back.

Retail America adopts “Happy Holidays” because it doesn’t care where your money comes from. But I can tell the difference when a Jewish child wishes me “Happy Hanukkah.” There’s a ringing in her soul. That’s what we should celebrate and honor – not uniformity but recognition of all the paths by which light and love enter our lives.

So, yes “Merry Christmas!” to you all! And if you drop me a comment to say “Merry Festivus,” well you’ll find it coming right back at you!


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