Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Police Navidad

Attention, Christians!   I bear glad tidings!  Yes, this is the time when many start to worry about all these Politically Correct people who want to BAN Christmas.

Stop worrying, please. 

We see this 47 times a day; people make it their status update to mention how they respond to a retail clerk saying, "Thank you and Happy Holiday!" by loudly, proudly trumpeting, "Merry Christmas!" 

OK.  Please understand, I am a Christian, and I rate myself very highly on the list of People Who Really Love Christmas.  I myself say "Merry Christmas" all the time, especially in December.  

But please, don't take it so personally if someone says the more generic "Happy Holidays" to you.  They have what we call a "job" and they have to follow what their boss calls "the rules."

Sure, Christianity is the world's most popular faith, but consider these numbers:  Christianity claims 2.1 billion followers.  Islam, 1.5 billion.  Hinduism, 900 million.  Sikhism, 23 million.  Judaism, 14 million.  Bahaism, 7 million. 

Which means, there are people of other faiths in the same nation, state, county, zip code and mall that we currently populate.  They don't necessarily share our faith.  Growing up in the WASPiest enclave of Baltimore County, I still recall the day a new boy showed up in our fourth-grade class, and how stunned everyone was when the teacher, before his arrival, prepped us for him by saying that he was Jewish and that his parents were divorced.  This being the era of Ozzie and Harriet America, both of these statuses were unprecedented in our circle.  When the kid finally walked into the classroom, he might as well have had two heads and a tail, so closely did we stare.

And we couldn't make head nor tail out of one thing:  he was just like us.  

I hear people hollering all the time about how schools can't have "Christmas concerts" anymore.  "They have to be POLITICALLY CORRECT and say 'Holiday Concert,' " they moan.  Maybe little Akbar in 3rd grade or Levi in 7th or Akashleena in her junior year are not dreaming of sugarplums or Santas.  Why make them feel lesser by promoting one religion over another?    No one is trying to take Christmas away from us. 

I know I am treading on parlous ground here; after all, people have been fighting wars in the name of religion since the first Easter.  But this is not worth fighting over.  I humbly ask those who get so upset about an innocuous greeting to remember that others might not feel the way they do about spirituality, and that's all right too. 

And, Merry Christmas to you all!  Happy Holidays!

1 comment:

Kristen said...

How shocking it seems now that a teacher would warn her class about a new student's religion and family status. She was probably smoking at her desk when she said it.