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Merry Christmas, Dammit!

(Sears in-store display for “Holiday Trees”.)

Is it just me, or is it a little incongruous for there to be an enormous “Holiday Tree” in Daley Plaza next to a life-size manger? Never one to hew to politically correct “values”, and certainly nothing more than a recovering Catholic and not a practicing one, but I’ve just about had it with the PC-ization of Christmas. Judging by an article in this week’s Crain’s Chicago Business, I’m not alone.

Now I’m not one to readily ever agree with the Christian right, who, as the article notes, have instigated much of the pushback on Christmas terminology, and I certainly celebrate a purely secular Christmas. But no one would think of calling a menorah a “holiday candelabra” or asking a Muslim to supplant Ramadan Kareem with “best wishes skipping food during daylight hours”. And last time I checked, Hallmark is still retailing “Happy Kwanzaa” cards. So how is it fair for the PC Police to expect those who celebrate Christmas, whether a religious Christmas or a secular Christmas, to do so on the Down Low?

Bing Crosby and misplaced multicultural sensitivity be damned. Where the heck is my cultural sensitivity? I celebrate Christmas. I put up a Christmas tree. I sing Christmas carols. And, dammit, I tell people “Merry Christmas.”

Do you have any idea how hard it is this year to find a Christmas card that says “Merry Christmas”? I mean, for Christ’s sake (literally), perusing Field’s, and Carson’s, and Target, every card that held the promise of the traditional terminology inside, every card that had a Santa, or a Christmas tree, or even a baby Jesus, said something on the order of, “Hoping whatever holiday tradition you celebrate, if you celebrate one, is one you enjoy this year”. Give me a break.

I look forward to sharing my Jewish friends’ coconut macaroons during Chanukkah. I wouldn’t dare eat them or anything else in front of my Muslim friends at Ramadan. And they don’t expect me to celebrate my holiday traditions quietly. So why does the holier-than-though PC set expect me to? Sometimes PC goes way too far.

So, to the PC Police out there, Best Wishes for a Happy Holiday. Now get lost.

And to everyone else, a Very Merry Christmas. Feel free to interpret that however you want 🙂

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Michael Thaddeus Doyle

I'm a NYC-native, Latino, Jew-by-choice, hardcore WDW fan in Chicago with an Irish last name. I believe in social justice, big cities, and public transit. I do nonprofit development. I've written this blog since 2005. Believe in the world you want to live in.

My Bio | My Conversion | My Family Reunion


2 replies

  1. Yep, I’m with Michael on this one.. Hey Michael, do you remember when you and I (mistakenly) thought that we’d buy a HOLIDAY Tree ha ha in the Harrow’s in Lynbrook…so we took the Long Island Railroad and then tried to (unsuccesfully) load the tree onto the train (it wouldn’t fit!!!).. That was quite funny…I think the PC attitude of holiday has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with mass marketing..but seriously folks, how many muslims that you know will be buying Holiday lights to decorate their Ramadan Bushes? Seriously? Any jewish folks out there looking for a Holiday Santa Claus? Nope, nope nope… Christmas is the dominant holiday, syncretized heavily from Pagans and not from anyone else …aren’t we remiss for not remembering our friends who celebrate the Solistice? Wishing someone a Merry anything can never be bad….so just go for it…If someone wishes me a happy Hanukah, i’d thank them, and be on my way, same for any other Holiday. So Merry Christmas, it is.. Christmas lights, Christmas Cards, Christmas Cookies, Christmas Caroling, etc….I mean no one in NYC and I mean no one in NYC calls the big green thing in Rockefeller center a Holiday Tree; it’s THE Christmas Tree, end of Discussion.. And we have a lovely Menorah in my town commons , which I love to see brighten each consecutive night of Hannukah, but wait….should I call it a Holiday Candelabra? Pullease.. Anyway!! Happy Everything to everyone..

  2. it could be that this isn’t an affront to christians, but rather just some old fashined capitalism.
    maybe the tree retailers are trying to grab a bit of market share beyond christians.
    let the jews, muslims, buddhists – whoever wants to – put up a tree to celebrate this holiday season!

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