December 3rd, 2011

planet

my annual anti-war-on-Christmas rant

easter, who must secretly have the same extended family I do, reminded me that it's this time of year when we get facebook statuses and email forwards from the isolationists reminding us that Christmas is about CHRIST and anyone who tries to water it down by saying "Happy Holidays!" or not putting a nativity scene on their desk at work is a HEATHEN. No, worse, a POLITICALLY CORRECT heathen!

In fact I think I'll write a special entry later this week on the "PC police" label that the right slaps on people who disagree with them... but let's just talk about Christmas first.

When it comes to Christians living a hard life, Jon Stewart put it wonderfully:
"Yes, the long war on Christianity. I pray that one day we may live in an America where Christians can worship freely! In broad daylight! Openly wearing the symbols of their religion... perhaps around their necks? And maybe - dare I dream it? - maybe one day there can be an openly Christian President. Or, perhaps, 43 of them. Consecutively."


If a cashier telling you "Happy Holidays" is the most persecuted you've ever been, I hate to tell you this, but your life isn't that hard. You're just making shit up to act persecuted.

I don't fault Christians for feeling like the sacredness of their holiday has been lost in the shuffle a bit. Christmas is watered down, is celebrated by people who don't care to appreciate it's real meaning. It's viewed by corporate America as a category on a balance sheet. That all sucks.

But all that is our fault, people. We wanted Christmas to be hung from the shopping mall ceiling. We wanted so many nativity sets on display that they needed to be cranked out in chinese factories. We wanted it everywhere, we've got it everywhere, and now we're surprised that we lost control of it.

You don't get both! You can't mass-produce Christmas and have everyone get the true meaning of it. In the same light, you can't force kids to pray in school and have them all magically believe in Jesus. That just isn't how public consumption works. It corrupts, it spreads thin, it loses its meaning, and you have to deal with the fact that all that fell apart because you were a lazy asshole.

Seriously, Christians. Stop doing two things:

1) Blaming the loss of your holiday on corporate America, when you were the one who thought corporate America should market it to the masses in the first place.

2) Acting like your life is hard because Target didn't get your pagan-stolen color theme right.

If you really wanted Christmas to mean something you'd pay lots of attention to how it's celebrated in your house, and family, and the needy people around you.

You'd be finding joy, not looking for things to complain about on facebook.