In a Gallup poll last year, 88 percent of respondents said it was a good idea to wish people “Merry Christmas” even at risk of offending those who do not celebrate it. By comparison, 11 percent thought it was better to avoid the phrase.
[New York Times]
If you’re one of those 88%, DON’T WISH ME A “MERRY CHRISTMAS!” I’m actually dumbfounded to know that only 11% of those polled realize that saying ‘Merry Christmas’ to a non-Christian is offensive. And why would the 88% think it was OK to deliberately offend someone they knew wouldn’t take kindly to the greeting? This is the height of religious boorishness and insensitivity. To those 88% I say, it’s your holiday–that’s great. Enjoy it. But don’t make the incredibly presumptuous assumption that I share your feelings about Christmas. I don’t. If you pride yourself on walking a mile in your neighbor’s mocassins, then give me a break. I celebrate a holiday–it’s Hanukah. Wish me a “Happy Hanukah.” Or if you don’t know my religion, “Happy Holidays” will do quite nicely.
And please don’t make me explain to you why saying Merry Christmas to me would be offensive. If you don’t understand why, then perhaps you should stay away from anyone who’s not Christian–because many, if not most of us would be offended.
Oh and as for those idiot Christian evangelizers like Focus on the Family and Bill O’Reilly who’re pressuring retailers like Target to “get Christian” for the holidays–I say “bollocks” to you. If you’re in favor of lessening inter-religious conflict in this holiday season, shop Target and say “bollocks” to the hyper-Christians.
And please don’t call me a Christian bigot (as Bill Bollocks does on his show–well not me personally). Religions are great, including Christianity–as long as they don’t stick their nose in my own spiritual affairs. I have a religion I’m quite happy with, thank you. Reminding me that observing my own religion places me on the periphery of American life, culture and society by greeting me with “Merry Christmas” rubs my nose in my otherness. So please don’t do it.
HAHAHA! “Christian bigot?” I’ve never heard that phrase before, but it sounds VERY O’Reilly-ish (I can’t even watch his show, btw. Even the sound of his voice is too much for me, lol). How can he feel discriminated against as a Christian when they start selling Christmas stuff around Halloween? Now, I don’t mind being surrounded by Christmas stuff for two months (even at work), but trying to keep stores from being inclusive of the rest of us is a little too much. A bit greedy, don’t you think?
I worked in a bookstore owned and run by a Jewish family during the holiday season one year. We said “Merry Christmas”, Happy Hanukah” and “Happy Holidays” according to what was appropriate to each customer, and most customers responded in kind. The joke at the store was that I should do the gift wrapping because as a goy I was more efficient since we had more practice at it!. The atmosphere was hectic but light-hearted. Bookselling there was a fun way to spend the giving season.
that reminds me of a letter that someone recently wrote in to the Atlanta Journal and Constitution. the reader wrote,
“Christians who feel that ‘Happy Holidays’ is, as Bill Hendrick reported, ‘a retreat from the very foundation of their faith’ ought to examine why they are looking for that foundation in a shopping mall rather than within their hearts.”
Target sent a secret memo that the phrase, “Happy Hanukkah” and any reference to Hanukkah is to be avoided during the holiday season in order to avoid offending, “people of other faiths”.
Local governments followed suit and removed from the public square Menorahs and any other symbolic references to Hanukkah.
What say yew?
Richard Silverstein says
My mama was a spy for the CIA too. Hoosier will have to provide a little more proof than this statement to make me believe that Target targeted Hanukah for elimination.
Also, menorahs are displayed publicly in a number of American cities so I’m not sure which local governments he/she’s talking about. Besides, I’m opposed to ALL displays of religious symbols on government property.