Merry Christmas, I hope you all had a joyous holiday! Yes, I said “Merry Christmas”– not “Happy Holidays” or Happy Chrismaquanzukuh because December 25th is Christmas and if that offends anyone then, I’m offended by people who are offended by Christmas! Regardless of your religious and spiritual beliefs I cannot begin to comprehend how anyone can possibly be offended by Christmas trees, decorations, celebrations or the words “Merry Christmas” uttered by those simply wishing to share their blessings and merriment. Unfortunately many people have not only become offended, but I have seen many who are reticent to make any statements verbally or otherwise that symbolize this sacred holiday. It’s another way that political correctness robs people of joy and strips this country of the values and traditions upon which it was founded.
Over the years I have seen increasing infringements upon the celebration and expression of this sacred, national holiday but this year was one of the worst yet. I kept hearing stories, both personally and on the news that exasperated me beyond belief. I started to think maybe this was all in my imagination; surely people can’t have anything against Christmas unless they are Scrooge! However Christmas morning when I went to Starbucks to get my morning coffee, I wished the barista a “Merry Christmas” and he responded with a soft, apprehensive “happy holidays”. I couldn’t help feeling sad and angry. I was not mad at the barista who was just trying to be polite, I was vexed by the political correctness that has been so deeply entrenched into the society that people are afraid to say Merry Christmas, even on Christmas day.
Although my parents both grew up in Jewish families we always had a Christmas tree and celebrated Christmas when I was a young child. All of my Jewish friends would squeal with excitement at the thought of coming over to help us decorate the tree and celebrate. I remember wondering why we lit a menorah (for Chanukah) and then decorated a Christmas tree if no one in my family was Christian. My father explained to me that Christmas was a religious holiday (symbolizing the birth of Christ) and while he fully respected the piousness of the holiday, and the religious meaning it held, he also acknowledged that it was a federal holiday established by president Grant in 1870. He explained to me that Christmas was a very important time for the American economy and morale. As a child I don’t know that I fully comprehended the wisdom my father was trying to impart but I was not going to complain about receiving gifts, decorating trees, and the sheer holiday joy. Now as an adult who has seen the Christmas spirit wane, the stifling of holiday traditions, and a societal moral decline I am beginning to understand and find myself becoming incensed by the intolerance I have seen.
From the banning of the “Christmas” tree in Rhode Island by governor Lincoln Chafee to the ban on Nativity scenes in Santa Monica’s national parks to Michael Salman doing time in jail for holding a bible study in his own home, we are witnessing a ubiquitous violation of freedom of religion established by the United States Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” Our founding fathers insisted on religious freedom–not freedom from religion! This may sound like semantics but it’s an important distinction. Inherent in the words “religious freedom” or “religious tolerance” is the ability for one to wholeheartedly practice and exercise their faith. This means they hold steadfast to their convictions and they believe someone who has different beliefs is wrong, but entitled to their credence and practice. This has become politically incorrect. It is no longer acceptable to admit you think someone else is wrong and that you are right, but that’s precisely what faith is. While the Constitution provides Americans with the liberty to believe or not believe whatever religion resonates for them, the principles embedded in the document are those of Judeo-Christian values because they knew that maintaining a balance between a free and moral society was the cornerstone for a healthy, flourishing nation.
Pastor Rick Warren explained the necessity for moral underpinnings in a capitalistic society on Sean Hannity’s show. Hannity asked Pastor Warren if he is “worried that America has lost touch”.
“Absolutely, I do believe that. I absolutely do believe that. In fact, a Jewish philosopher, Will Herberg, of a previous generation called it the cut flower syndrome. What it is, flowers are beautiful, but if you cut them, you put them in a vase, they’re going to stay beautiful for a period of time, but eventually they’re going to fade, because you cut them off from the roots.
As America is cut off from its moral and spiritual and ethical roots, we’re now seeing the flower fades. I actually had a debate with this in people’s halls in Tiananmen Square with the communist government a number of years ago. I said you want the economic success of the west without the moral and ethical underpinnings. Capitalism works because there’s a Judeo-Christian basis underneath it that says treat people well, with integrity, take care of people and things like that. If you take that out, you just take raw greed, you get what happened in Russia. You trade one for another.”
I do not believe you must be a Christian or adhere to any formal religion to be a good or honorable person. I know many atheists or “spiritual” but agnostic or non-practicing individuals who are full of integrity and have a strong inner moral compass that guides their actions, but I also know that when you take away someone’s faith and right to believe you leave them with a void. Perhaps that is exactly the intention of those that created the critical theory we now call “political correctness”. I think the lyrics from “Not My Problem”, a song from the 1969 musical play Celebration, sums up much of the current zeitgeist now:
The Earth is being eaten by machines. Not my problem!
Taking Speed can rearrange your genes. Not my problem!
I’ve become a humble bum, a drop-out from Humanity.
You may think my morals stink, but at least I keep my sanity.
I’d like to see us all become like saints, but since that cannot be,
Then it’s simply not my pro-o-o-o-o-o-blem!
The Chinese have a nuclear device. Not my problem!
Ev’ry politician has his price. Not my problem!
God is dead, that’s what they said; I read it in an interview.
If it’s so, I’d like to know: Just what the hell am I supposed to do?
I know the world will soon be going BOOM, despite what we may do,
But it’s simply not my pro-o-o-o-o-o-blem!
Somebody screams in terror on the street. Not my problem!
People die of hunger, I repeat: Not my problem!
God is dead, that’s what they said; done in by Darwin, Marx and Freud.
Free are we from Deity; of course, it sort’a leaves a little void.
I used to care about my fellow man; but now, hurrah! I’m free,
And it’s simply not my pro-o-o-o-o-o-blem!
The loss of Christmas’ presence has several implications culturally, morally, economically, and is instrumental in the paradigm shift pervading the Country. We have become a culture of people so worried about being politically incorrect that people are afraid to stand for anything. On the surface people may seem sweet and considerate when they are tiptoeing around as not to offend anyone but as Alexander Hamilton said, “If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything!”
The notion of us becoming a nation of people who “fall for anything” is opprobrious and reprehensible considering the great risks our ancestors took to ensure we had the liberties to defend our tenets religious or otherwise.
This Politichick wants to stand for religious freedom, and an unabashed merry celebration of Christmas!!!