Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry War on Christmas ... er, I mean Happy Holidays from Eric Three Thousand!

Remember, Jesus is the reason for the season. Yeah, and ALL seasons! Seriously, who came up with that lame saying? Christmas isn't enough for Jesus? He needs Thanksgiving, New Year's day, and Hanukkah as well? That's a little selfish.

A better saying would be "Jesus is the reason we call an ancient pagan holiday 'Christmas.'" But, of course, that doesn't rhyme.

Like most people in the western world and much of the rest, I celebrate Christmas. I have a tree and fairy lights and presents. And most Christians are happy that everyone celebrates their religious holiday even if most people aren't really marking it in a religious way.

But then there are assholes like Bill O'Reilly who want it both ways. They want Christmas to be a national holiday and they want everyone to celebrate but, at the same time, they complain that people are forgetting about Jesus.

The other day I was listening to an interview on NPR with the mayor of some town who decided it was appropriate to put a manger scene on top of the town hall even though there were complaints by some non-Christians. His reasoning was this: as long as the manger was part of an overall display including Santa Clause then it was fine. When asked if they ever display symbols for the holidays of other religions, such as a menorah for Hanukkah, he said he has gotten requests for all kinds of ridiculous things such as the "Flying Spaghetti Holiday" and he finds that insulting to Christianity. So let me get this straight; he doesn't find comparing Hanukkah to flying spaghetti to be insulting?

When it was suggested that maybe Christmas decorations that weren't overtly religious would be more appropriate for a government building he reminded us that Jesus was the whole reason for the holiday in the first place.

Well, you can't have it both ways; either it's a civic holiday that everyone can enjoy OR it's a purely religious holiday that shouldn't be promoted by the government.

Anyway, as I said, it's really an ancient pagan winter solstice celebration that was co-opted by the Christians to celebrate the birth of a baby who was probably born in the spring. Whatever.

Sorry about my rant. I want everyone of every religion to celebrate any way they choose. Manger scenes on government building don't even bother me. It just bothers me that some people don't even understand that it could seem like government promotion of a specific religion, which is a problem.

But seriously, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, Happy Whatever!

Hope you all have a great 2008!


Eric Three Thousand


Anonymous said...

I really like your posts and I couldn't agree with you more. Thank you for all your posts they always make me smile and laugh out loud with your posts on Project Runway and Top Chef. Have a good new year and keep writing you are talented. Alrighty Happy New Year!

Cliff O'Neill said...


I swear, we must be twins separated at birth, because you're forever saying what I'm thinking.

Hugs to you and yours on this Merry Solstice!

mumblesalot (Laura A) said...

Hi ya Eric and Eric happy Hanukah and Merry Christmas!

Having survived another "Christmas season" in Boston, I don't see how any of this could have anything to do with Christ. (actually it doesn't stop until jan 5th) Happy Consumerism, without the happy, is how it pans out around here. A short trip to the grocery store brought me back with gritted teeth every time. Yikes I never experienced so much unbridled aggression. We should figure out a way to harness that energy. I am sure we could power the eastern seaboard for a year with it.

Now would everyone who has been out running around like madwomen please go home and watch TV or something. That is my prayer for the New Year.

BigAssBelle said...

when did christians get to be so obnoxious?? i just don't understand it. it must have happened while i was drunk.

seriously, all of this madness seemed to start with those stupid "i found it" bumper stickers back in the late '70s.

they were everywhere, and around the same time, people started getting really aggressive with their inquisitiveness re the nature of my soul.

by the way, it's funny that i was thinking this same thing last night in the bathtub: the reason for the season . . . who came up with that lame saying?

the reason for the season is simply to spend: on food, decor, outings, gifts gifts gifts gifts. when folks are camping out overnight to acquire some tzotchke that simply must be had, there's something amiss in the land.

without christmas, and the attendant consumerist binge, the slo-mo implosion that is the US economy might actually get some attention and, subsequently, some action.

that's what i want for christmas. oh well.

ArtfulSub said...

Merry Christmas. It wasn't that bad of a rant. It's possible that the comparison of Hanukkah to the Flying Spaghetti Monster was a slip-of-the-tongue or PBS editing, of course.

Regarding Church/State issue neanderthals, it's my experience that there are FAR more on the other side of the equation.

Marius said...

I totally agree with Anonymous; your posts are wonderful and always make me smile. Happy New Year, Eric.