Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Ya Got Trouble?

Do you remember the musical "The Music Man"?  The deal was, a phony who claimed to be a music professor went from town to town selling the locals on the idea of having a boys' band in their small town.  But, to get the stubborn Iowans to reach into their wallets to pay for trumpets and uniforms, he had to create a need for a band.  The answer was to seize on some trivial local issue and blow it all out of proportion, instilling fear in the citizenry until they would gladly pay for something  - anything! - to save their sons from the demon of a pool table in their community.  "Well, ya got trouble, my friend, trouble right here in River City..." he rapped. and as soon as the rubes heard that a pool table would corrupt their sons, they were on board with the crooked scheme.

I don't know if there is any money in it for anyone, but this commotion about "they're trying to take Christmas away from us!" reminds me of that made-up trouble.  For instance, this picture, which circulates every year about this time on Facebook. You've seen it if you're on The Book, and do you really know anyone who has posted a manger scene with the birth of Christ, only to come back and find that it's been removed?

Of course you don't, and you don't know anyone who has been fired from their job at the hardware store for wishing customers a Merry Christmas, so I'll tell you what. Let's leave the worrying up to the worriers. They enjoy it so much. And the people who spread these rumors get a weird sort of thrill from upsetting the goodhearted among us. The rest of us can go on worshipping as we choose, or not, and posting pictures and exchanging warm happy holiday greetings to members of whatever faiths and not fretting about The War On Christmas, which never existed and never will.

Unless you let it.

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