Friday, December 21, 2007

Generic “Holiday” Greetings Are Offensive

From a sensible column in the Journal-Sentinel:
Merry Christmas. That’s right, I said it and in a family newspaper no less. I know the politically correct police are running to the nearest ACLU-friendly judge to get a cease and desist order against me, but I’ll say it again. Merry Christmas, and I hope you had a happy Hanukkah as well.

I’m not sure when the Christ-ophobic activists and judges decided that “Merry Christmas” was an obscene phrase that should be banned. I vaguely remember priests, ministers and bus placards urging us to keep Christ in Christmas. Then one day, I looked around and found we’re not even allowed to keep Christmas in Christmas. Instead, we’re given a “season’s greetings” as if winter was a good enough reason to make merry!

Father Bill Kurz, a professor at Marquette University and nationally known author, thinks the constant tinkering so as not to offend is overdone.

“It’s possible to get so open-minded that one’s brains fall out,” he said.

My old radio buddy, Bill Edwards, a staunch Hanukkah fan, agreed with Kurz.

He doesn’t see how anybody could be offended by someone’s wish for your happiness.

“Let’s just say being holiday PC isn’t kosher,” Edwards said. Edwards is more than happy to accept a “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Kwanzaa” from any well-wisher.

Speaking of Kwanzaa, one of Milwaukee’s favorite speed skaters, Olu Sijuwade, took time out from racing to give me his feelings on the holiday debate.

“Kwanzaa is not a religious celebration; it’s a celebration of culture,” he told me.

“It’s purposely put after Hanukkah and Christmas so you can celebrate all three if you want to.” He didn’t think anyone who loves Kwanzaa who would be offended by getting a “Merry Christmas.”

As for the more generic “Happy holidays,” that actually does seem to offend.

“I got an e-mail from a viewer who turned off the Holiday Parade because it wasn’t called the Christmas Parade,” said Ted Perry of WITI-TV (Channel 6). “We didn’t call it that. That’s what the organizers called it. She just couldn’t watch it.”

How odd. In the attempt to offend nobody, the holiday-phobes actually have upset everybody! Well, let me fix that: Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas and happy Kwanzaa to all!

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to say, as a liberal, I think someone getting offended at a "Holiday Parade" (especially to the point of being unable to watch it) is just as ridiculous and pitiful as someone getting offended for being wished a "Merry Christmas."

Both extremes are nuts and need to find better ways to occupy their time.

Oh, and you're going to catch hell for not capitalizaing the "h" in "Happy Kwanzaa."

3:38 PM  
Blogger grumps said...

And, you know, in all of the foolishness I have yet to actually meet anyone who has been prsscribed from saying Merry christmas if that's what they wish to do except for those who work in government offices.

The ladies at Target can say exactly what the guys at the Mobil station can.

Of course, most of my Israeli business contacts go a little light on the whole "Christ" ig but then we don't use religion to shill for our products the way that some do.

Merry Christmas, you old poop, as Kate Hepburn might have said. Take a long weekend to get your knickers untwisted and enjoy the holiday.

4:28 PM  
Blogger James Pawlak said...

Does anyone know the date, if any, for the official celebration for the Hindu goddess Kali? I know the "how"; But, not the proper date(s).

4:37 PM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

"It's possible to get so open-minded that one's brains fall out," he said

He COULD have acknowledged G K Chesterton as the source of that, too...

11:53 AM  

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