November 17, 2013

There Is a War on Christmas!

Daniel Mach, director of ACLU’s program on freedom of religion and belief, is quoted in a recent USA Today article about Sarah Palin’s new book Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas:
“Culture warriors have spread the myth of a fanciful ‘war on Christmas’ for years. This is largely a manufactured controversy. Christmas celebrations in this country are alive and well.”
Douglas Laycock, a law professor at the University of Virginia adds,
“There is no war on Christmas.”
I have lived through 82 Christmases, and the celebration of Christ’s birth has changed substantially since the Thirties when:
  • “Merry Christmas,” not “Happy Holidays” was the standard greeting.
  • Schools offered Christmas Concerts, not Winter Concerts. 
  • Christmas carols were sung in schools. 
  • Christmas cards outnumbered Holiday cards.
  • People decorated Christmas trees, not Holiday Trees.
  • Store clerks were permitted to wish customers a "Merry Christmas."
There are many theories about how December 25 was chosen as the date to observe Jesus’ birth, but the tradition is at least 1,700 years old.

In the past 100 years, Christmas practices have changed dramatically, but the fact remains December 25 is not simply a “holiday.” It continues to be a celebration of the birth of Christ, and no amount of semantic manipulation can change that fact!