December 25, 2011

'War on Christmas' Generates Money for Conservative Organizations

war on ChristmasYou and I both know that there is no war on Christmas. Encouraging people to be respectful of one another (e.g., saying "happy holidays" rather than presuming to know which holidays someone celebrates) is not a war. Reminding government that it is not legal for them to promote one religion via sectarian holiday displays without allowing displays from other belief systems is also not a war. Nobody is trying to ban Christmas, not even we members of the evil atheist horde.

But if that's the case and there really is no war on Christmas, why must we hear about it every year? The answer is money. Scaring people about an imagined war on Christmas has proven to be an effective way for conservative organizations with Christian extremist leanings to raise money. In the United States, conservative politics comes wrapped not only in an American flag but in a Christian flag. Cleverly designed propaganda that exploits one's fear of change, sense of patriotism, and love of the Jesus concept translates into donations.

Conservative Christians already have a persecution complex, making them ideal marks. They perceive threat everywhere but are particularly terrified by the notion of a diverse society in which their privilege is questioned. They fear Sharia law. They fear that atheists are trying to ban their ridiculous bibles. They fear the UN. They are a fearful bunch who have developed a bunker mentality (i.e., to be safe, one must hunker down, horde wealth, arm oneself, and keep the outsiders at bay).

The formula for exploiting them is a simple one. Instill fear, dangle a solution (or even an absurd product), collect money. All one really has to do is play on their fear in a self-sustaining way. Picking on something like Christmas is perfect because it only happens once a year, preventing people from habituating too quickly. It is also perfect because of the Jesus connotations.
Your most sacred traditions are under attack by the secularists! Just look at them actually trying enforce the laws of this secular democracy. Imagine the nerve of the multiculturalists who are asking you to respect the dangerous outsiders! We must fight them, and we need your help to do so…
As outlandish as this all sounds, it works. The people are scared, and the donations poor in. As long as it continues to be such an effective fundraising ploy, it will continue. This war is way too profitable to abandon.

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