Last week, the darling man forwarded a meme laden Christmas spam letter. He and I had a lot of fun tearing apart the various little logical fallacies and appeals to emotion contained therein (I’ll go ahead and post it below). One of the things that struck me was how HARD the person who originally wrote this (if it wasn’t just spit out by some meme machine) tried to convey their outrage at their holiday being trampled… TRAMPLED I TELL YOU!… by the godless heathens who wanted their mid-winter holiday acknowledged, too. ‘IT ISN’T FAIR!’ the email seems to be screeching. They appear to be under the impression that by recognizing other cultures and religions, that somehow translates into THEIR religion being completely ignored.
First amendment aside (you remember. The one that says all religions are equally valid in the eyes of the law?), it’s a pretty selfish, uncharitable and distinctly un-Christian attitude to take. Jesus’ birth (which took place ’round about April for those of us able to count) was not the first mid-winter holiday. Nor did it supplant all others. We live in an amazing, wonderful time and place in which everyone is able to celebrate their own chosen mid-winter festival, whether it’s Christmas or any one of many others like the solstice, Modranect, Diwali, Yule, Sadeh, Rosh Hashana, the Saturnalia or even Festivus with the Costanzas. Whichever of these anyone celebrates, it is because it’s what is meaningful to them, not out of some desire to stomp all over someone else’s celebration. So have a cup of egg nog, kiss under the (pagan) mistletoe and get over yourselves already.
The email (complete with my and the dm’s responses):
Twas the Month Before Christmas
*Twas the month before Christmas*
*When all through our land,*
*Not a Christian was praying*
*Nor taking a stand.*
Give me a freakin’ break. Nobody takes a stand or jerks their knees *faster* than the “Christians.” If they even remotely perceive their precious traditions or “values” are being infringed upon, they start screaming from the rooftops about their rights and how they’re being “overrun,” despite being 85% of the population. I guess the “Christian” value of “sharing” just sort of fell by the wayside…
*See the PC Police had taken away,*
*The reason for Christmas – no one could say.* Which is? Ditto. Cite?
*The children were told by their schools not to sing*
*About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things.*
Let us make this perfectly clear. NO ONE is told they cannot pray in school. They are told they cannot lead others in prayer, and that the schools cannot endorse any religion. THAT is the state espousing one particular religion over others, and THAT is against the first amendment. Were the school or teachers to expect children to read from the Torah, wouldn’t you be howling the place down? However. For the sake of clarity, please see Everson v. Board of Education, here: http://members.tripod.com/~candst/tnppage/eclause1.htm
*It might hurt people’s feelings, the teachers would say*
And this isn’t because Christians are having their feelings hurt? Well. Only Christian feelings matter, after all…..everyone else is just a heathen…
* December 25th is just a ” Holiday “.*
It’s one of many… isn’t it? And, not even the original mid-winter holiday. But that’s not important right now….
*Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit*
*Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it!*
Makes you wonder where all the “Christians” who shop at Wal Mart got to…..
*CDs from Madonna, an X BOX, an I-pod*
*Something was changing, something quite odd! *
*Retailers promoted Ramadan and Kwanzaa*
*In hopes to sell books by Franken & Fonda.*
So… this is a libr’l thing? Rush Limbaugh Is A Big, Fat Idiot is one of my favorite books….
*As Targets were hanging their trees upside down*
Do they get that the trees are a cultural symbol and not a religious one? (Pagan tradition trumped again) OMG!! UPSIDE DOWN!?!?! Like an upside down cross??!! OH NOES!!
* At Lowe’s the word Christmas – was no where to be found.*
*At K-Mart and Staples and Penny’s and Sears*
*You won’t hear the word Christmas; it won’t touch your ears.*
Dude! That totally sucks that they’re the only stores in the entire country we can shop at! And it’s, like, really, RILLY important to me that they not acknowledge other holidays, because my god is the bestest and they need to, like, totally acknowledge that instead of attempting to cater to as many customers as possible and bolster their bottom lines, even if they are corporations.
*Inclusive, sensitive, Di-ver-si-ty*
*Are words that were used to intimidate me. *
They sound indignant… I hate it when people tell me to be all tolerant and stuff….Wait! What’d that guy in the New Testament say about tolerance? I forget….
*Now Daschle, Now Darden, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzen*
Ah… more libr’ls… Yeah, but c’mon… Wolf Blitzer gets on my last nerve, too.
*On Boxer, on Rather, on Kerry, on Clinton !*
Because Democrats don’t have God on their side…. We have that scary science thing. We’re not allowed to have god. Apparently.
*At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter*
*To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter.*
Isn’t this a bit of an over characterization? Sadly, yes. But considering they had to make it rhyme, and couldn’t come up with a good one for national policy, it stretches. Sorta.
*And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith*
Took it away?!?! WTH??? Is your faith so flimsy that retailers not expressing your specific holiday sentiment will take it away?
* Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace*
By whom? When? Was the first amendment repealed and nobody told me?
*The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded*
Probably forgot to keep the receipt….
*The reason for the season, stopped before it started.*
Jesus’s birth? I’m getting confused… Jesus wasn’t born now? He was. Just…not in December. I think Christians try very hard to ignore that. Let’s look at it logically (if that is for a moment possible). When Jesus was born, the shepherds were “watching over their flocks by night.” On the high steppes of Israel , there’s really only one time they do that, which is during lambing season, which is typically, y’know, Spring. Not December. The Eastern Orthodox church continued to reject Dec. 25th as “Christmas” til around 529 AD, and in 567, the Council of Tours proclaimed the 12 days from Dec. 25th to the epiphany as a “sacred season,” thus stepping all over the pagan mid-winter festival.
*So as you celebrate “Winter Break” under your “Dream Tree”*
*Sipping your Starbucks, listen to me. *
So….it should be called a “Christmas tree,” right? Because, renaming it is wrong, and totally goes against what the true spirit of the holiday means? K. Do me a favor, too. Right now, before you do anything else. Go find a bible and look up Jeremiah, ch. 10 verses 1 through 5-ish, and see what Jesus said about hanging out with people who put trees in their homes in mid-winter. Then get back to me about how changing the name of something doesn’t change the intent. You don’t even wanna *know* what mistletoe used to get you. Kissed would be putting it mildly.
*Choose your words carefully, choose what you say*
*Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS ,
not Happy Holiday !*
And show everyone that nobody’s allowed to have a holiday but Christians!!1!ELEVENTY!
Happy New Year, Everyone. Celebrate. The days are getting longer. I mean…for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, I guess for people in Australia and New Zealand….ah, the hell with it.