The Neosecularist

I Said That? Yeah, I Said That!

Have A Very [Censored] And A Happy New Year!

The Right says there is a systematic, ongoing deliberate “War on Christmas”.  The Left says it ain’t so.  Who’s telling the truth?  You decide.

The left, as with Skye Jethani, scoffs at the idea that there is a “War on Christmas”.

Since 2005, Fox News has deployed its minions to wage their war on the “War on Christmas,” and the American Family Association has pushed for a boycott of stores for not using the words “Merry Christmas” in their seasonal marketing. Like many public institutions, some retailers opt to use the inclusive phrase “Happy Holidays” which these groups interpret as a slam to Jesus Christ- the real “reason for the season.”

On the other hand:

Congress is now banned from using the phrase “Merry Christmas” in their mailings.  The controversy?  These congressional mailings, “franking” they call it, is paid for by you, the tax payer.  You might be offended if congress spends your tax dollars wishing you or anyone else a “Merry Christmas”.  Never mind that congress uses this mailing privilege for virtually all its postal needs, including their own campaigns, elections and reelections, despite the fact they are not supposed to.  Untold millions of dollars you pay for so that congress can reelect itself and remain in power.  What the hell is more offensive, more politically incorrect – politically immoral?  A warm and invigorating two-word phrase, or having congress “frank” us with our own tax dollars?  Is the intentional removal of  Merry Christmas a “war on Christmas” or not?  You decide.

The Left sneers at the right for its concern of a “War on Christmas”.

Christmas only gained acceptance among a majority of Protestant Christians when it gained wide acceptance by the American public in general. And that can be attributed to the rise of Santa Claus in the secular pantheon.

On the other hand:

When Wisconsin Governor, Scott Walker, had the audacity to revert back to the “old name” for the tree his state brings out every year at this time, atheists and liberals had a fit (and liberal Jews had a conniption).  The tree, which had been called a “Holiday Tree” for the past 25 years, Scott Walker now re-Christianed of all things a “Christmas tree”, which it had been called for decades prior to its bland, sterile, uninviting, “inoffensive” renaming as a “Holiday Tree”.  Is the premeditated replacing of “Holiday” with “Christmas” a win in the right’s corner or not?  or does this move by Walker only escalate the “War on Christmas”, which doesn’t actually exist?  You decide.

The Left derides the right for its fear the left is stealing Christmas.

Sermons about the pagan origins of Christmas or the danger of rampant materialism in Christ’s name are unlikely to be heard today. In recent years the dominant message heard from the Christian community during the holiday season has been precisely the opposite. Today, it seems many Christians are offended when unchecked materialism in December is not explicitly associated with Christ. The irony.

On the other hand:

After a nativity scene in Athens, TX was erected, atheists from the Freedom from Religion Foundation were livid enough to demand it be removed.  Thousands of nativity supporters came out to defend the yearly display.  Although a banner was initially displayed by an unknown atheist which read:

At this season of the Winter Solstice, let reason prevail.’

‘There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world. Religion is but a myth & superstition that hardens hearts & enslaves minds.”

It has since been taken down because the proper claims to display the banner were not made.  Liberal atheists are ones to talk about “hardened hearts” and enslaving minds”.   How much more “harder” does one make their own heart, how much more does one “enslave” their own mind when they close and seal both with such an outward and blatant compulsion, allowing themselves to be thrown into a Scrooge-like frenzy of hysterics over a simple nativity scene?  Is this the best argument atheists can make to “let reason prevail”?  And, will this lead to another battle, another skirmish in the ongoing, nonexistent “War on Christmas” or not?  You decide.

The Left chides the right for its stance on saying “Merry Christmas”, rather than “Happy Holidays”.  And when the Right does use the phrase, “Happy Holidays”, the Left chides the right again.  The Left mocks the right for contending there is a “War On Christmas”, yet try to sing Christmas carols in public schools and see what happens.

Skye Jethani says about the Puritans:

Many of us forget that Christmas itself is a holiday of dubious origin. For example, the Puritans were stridently opposed to the celebration of Christmas. They could find no biblical support for the holiday, and they believed (correctly) that it was originally a pagan festival now masquerading as Christian one.

So atheists and liberals are the “New Puritans”?  Neither atheists or liberals “find support for the holiday”, and they both believe “it was originally a pagan festival”.  Like the Puritans, atheists and liberals would have all mention of Christmas, and celebrating Christmas, banned.  Atheists and liberals despise Puritans and the Puritan way of life; they ridicule and rip to shreds the Puritans for their “backward”, their strict adherence to biblical literalism, religious standards and values – and for killing 19 people wrongly accused for witchcraft in 1692.  But to prop up their anti-Christmas agenda, they would use Puritans to their advantage.  They would invoke the spirit of Puritanism in their political ploy to water down, and drowned out Christmas.  Would the real Puritans have approved of this?

The Left adamantly denies there is a “War on Christmas”.

Sadly, the “War on Christmas” and “Christmas Under Siege” campaigns pushed by some conservative Christians says more about the church’s captivity to consumerism than its commitment to the love of Christ and their neighbors.

On the other hand, every year we hear of one instance after another where Christmas is being attacked, chipped away and banned by those people who are offended, intimidated, or belittled by it.  People who would have Christmas celebrated in private, if at all.  For what and to what end?  To be more like the Puritans?  Is this what atheists and liberals are fighting for?  Is this what the “War on Christmas” is all about for atheists and liberals?  Reclaiming Puritanism?  Or is there something more provocative being conducted by those people who would see “Merry Christmas” replaced by Happy Holidays”?  You decide.

Because right now you have the right to decide whether saying Merry Christmas” is innocent or deeply disturbing, before a small minority of people make that decision for you.

Do you want that?  Or do you want a “war” to retain your rights?

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4 thoughts on “Have A Very [Censored] And A Happy New Year!

  1. I’m flattered that you chose to ‘liberally’ quote from my article about the war on Christmas. But I’m sorry to inform you that I am neither an atheist nor a liberal. I am an evangelical pastor ordained in the Christian & Missionary Alliance Church trained at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and an editor with Christianity Today, a magazine started by Billy Graham. I affirm the authority of Scripture, do not affirm that all-paths-lead-to-God, and can affirm the Apostles Creed without reservation. I am pro-life, pro-mission, pro-church, pro-Christmas, and pro-loving my neighbors regardless of their worldview of religion.

    May God bless you….and Merry Christmas.

    Skye Jethani

  2. Skye,

    I never referred to you specifically as a liberal or an atheist. However, your position, that is of removing all vestiges, all references, of Christmas from the public square, is one liberals and atheists, and those on the left, are fighting for. As someone who is secular, I find nothing wrong with incorporating a “Merry Christmas” greeting into the public air space; I find nothing uncomfortable with a nativity scene or Christmas carols in public schools. Liberals do. Your article seemed to me another in a string of articles affirming the “War on Christmas”. Publicly, outwardly celebrating Christmas seems to make most non believers, as well as liberal Christians as uncomfortable as the Puritans you described in your article. Even conservatives loathe the commercialism of Christmas. However, we nonetheless support the capitalism which feeds commercialism. Businesses rely on people buying more during the Christmas holiday season than during any other time of the year. Perhaps if this were not so, if the tax structure were geared to be more more pro-business, then business itself could take a break and not “push” itself so heavily, and we would not have to worry about the economy suffering; we would realize Christmas was not about how much money is spent on presents, but rather on how much time and love is spent on and devoted to family.

    That aside, there is nonetheless a committed effort by liberals and atheists, and liberal, progressive Christians, to remove the religious aspects of Christmas from the public square. Other than the atheists and liberals, how does that benefit anyone else?

  3. Pingback: Why The “War On Christmas” Bothers Me | Stand Up for the Truth

  4. Pingback: Glen Beck’s Christmas message. » Kallsign Snoopys Doghouse

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