November 14, 2005

Coming Soon: The "War on Christmas"

There is no "War on Christmas" #Christmas #textgramEach year, some Christians loudly protest imagined attacks on Christmas. Evidently, they feel that efforts to make sure public displays promoting their religion are legal and inoffensive to persons of other religions and non-believers constitute a "war on Christmas." If one dares to point out that their behavior is illegal (e.g., violating separation of church and state by erecting pro-Christian displays on public property), offensive to non-Christians, or otherwise annoying, then one is attacking them, their religion, and/or their holiday. This has to be one of the strangest twists of logic I've encountered.

Wal-Mart appears to be the current target this year because they have allegedly been training their greeters to use a greeting that respects persons with non-Christian beliefs. Yes, it seems that Wal-Mart recognizes that some Jews, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, etc. are not particularly interested in hearing "Merry Christmas" and have decided to replace it with "Seasons Greetings" or "Happy Holidays." You know, because some people celebrate other holidays this time of year and others don't celebrate any.

I don't think I've ever had occasion to say this before, but right on Wal-Mart! It is about time that somebody demonstrate some respect for religious minorities in this country. Christian privilege has gone on long enough. The U.S. is not a Christian nation but a religiously pluralistic one. And yes, that includes those of us who do not believe in any gods. 

To the legions of Christians who are upset about this, I'd like to point out that nobody is attacking your holiday (I want no part of it, so I'm happy to refer to it as "your holiday"). All we are asking is that you use some sensitivity in how you present it in public (if you cannot refrain from public displays). If you let this become a divisive issue, then it seems like you are the ones determined to ruin your own holiday.