As we ring in the holiday season, the air is filled with the smell of fresh pine needles. The grass is covered with new fallen snow. Children across the nation are huddled by their television screens watching Christmas specials in anticipation of the most celebrated holiday in the world. Kids around the world are adjusting their Christmas lists with last minute changes hoping the days following the holiday will catapult their minds with creative and imaginative play. Hundreds of people decorate their homes with bright and festive Christmas lights; some with enough lights that would make the Grizwald family envious. It is a wonderful time of year; the Christmas season is upon us.
Not so fast. For some time now, I have heard over and over again about how we shouldn't say the word "Christmas." Some have told me everyone doesn't celebrate Christmas. I have also been told to be careful, especially at work, where I may accidentally wish someone a Merry Christmas who doesn't celebrate the holiday. Saying Merry Christmas by mistake to the wrong person could lead to a lot of trouble if they happen to be an atheist or belong to a non Christian religion. A safe way to greet someone this holiday season would be "Happy Holidays." Even "Seasons Greetings" has been construed, by some, to be too "Christmassy." In reality, most people I have met who do not celebrate Christmas are fine with things the way they are and are not as sensitive as everyone would like you to believe. Instead, just like everything else, there are a small group of people and some small organizations that want to ruin it for everyone else.
Year after year I hear these tales. These lessons are continuously regurgitated over and over again by the media. Every year we hear about some extreme atheist groups and groups on the left who come out brutally attacking this holiday. Most recently an attack occurred in the Washington capitol, where an atheist group was allowed to place a sign explaining why there is no God next to a Christmas Nativity scene. I cannot turn on the television without seeing someone screaming about Christmas decorations that offended them. Does this seem right to anyone? Is all this really necessary? Should there be a better representation of all religious holidays everywhere we go?
The fact remains that 95 percent of all Americans celebrate Christmas. That leaves only 5 percent that do not celebrate the holiday, of which even less are offended by it. I see several stores and offices that do a tremendous job of honoring many of the religious holidays around us. I think that is fantastic, as long as they choose to do this out of their own free will and not out of fear. I do, however, see others that display only what most would refer to as Christmas decorations. Is that so bad? Should companies be forced to display decorations that show every feeling and belief that exists? Sounds like an opportunity for another liberal government mandate. Don't laugh! Something like this could be looming on the horizon. Many organizations would like to see legislation passed so their tiny group can get an "equal shake" this holiday season. Let me ask this question, if I were to visit the offices of these groups that are on the offense against Christmas, would I see a wide array of holidays being honored in their offices? My guess is I would not. One shouldn't criticize anyone until they choose to lead by example. If one of these groups chooses to do this, we need to ensure they include ALL religions no matter how minimal they may seem. A quick Google search will show there are thousands of alternative religions most people have never heard of. I hope they have plenty of room in their main lobbies so everyone is equally represented.
Last time I checked, the Pilgrims sailed here for the religious freedom to worship whatever God they chose. With 95 percent of the people celebrating Christmas it is safe to say we are still primarily a Judeo-Christian nation and that is not going to change anytime soon. This great country was founded on Christian principles and "In God We Trust" is stamped on all American currency, to the disliking of some atheist groups. That being said in a free society all religions are welcome to come here with the freedom to believe, or not to believe, in whatever they choose. However, one has to keep in mind this is and always will be a Christian nation. I would never expect to go to another country where 95 percent of the people celebrate another holiday and expect to see an equal amount of Christmas decorations there. If I celebrated something different, I would never expect, nor would I want to see my beliefs pushed on those in that country. Why should this be any different here in America?
For the record I am a conservative, but I do not consider myself a very spiritual person. I am not very religious and while I believe in God, I have more understanding for people who are atheist and those who celebrate other religions than one might think. I have never been offended by anyone else who has wished me a happy holiday for something I do not celebrate (yes it has happened before). I look at it as someone took a couple of seconds to wish me a good day for something they believe very strongly in. I cannot think if a higher compliment someone can give than that. I ask that you grant me, and most of the other people in this country, the same respect when my favorite holiday of the year comes around.
That being said let me wish everyone a Merry Christmas. For those of you who do not celebrate Christmas, but are still respectful of it, have a Happy Holiday. Those who are not respectful of Christmas, I wish you well. Demonizing and attacking Christmas is only empowering the people who celebrate it. Christmas is not going away any time soon and either are 95 percent of the American population who celebrate it.