Twinkle lights, harried shoppers, excited kids and special church pageants aren’t the only signs that Christmas is just around the corner. ‘Tis the season also for the religious right’s silly and hyperbolic fundraising appeals warning of a mythical “War on Christmas.”
Every year at this time we see a virtual avalanche of emails designed to scare Christians into thinking that “the left” and “secular humanists” are bent on erasing Christmas from America. Of course, a December drive down just about any street in America belies such an absurd claim. And never mind that tens of millions of Christians in this country continue, unimpeded, to attend Christmas church services and publicly celebrate the season in a myriad of big and little ways.
No, despite all the clear evidence that Christianity generally and the celebration of Christmas specifically continue to be practiced and celebrated freely in America, we still see nonsense like this in an email blast today from Liberty Institute, the Texas affiliate of Focus on the Family:
No matter what anybody says, the Left really is conducting an unrelenting war on Christmas. We have the cases to prove that.
They know that if they can confuse enough teachers and public officials about what the Constitution does and doesn’t allow, win enough cases, and brainwash enough kids to self-censor their speech at Christmas, they’ll win.
And their victory won’t just be to squash Christmas celebrations.
They’ll be well on their way to squashing all public expression of faith, as they are trying to do everywhere, all year long.
And what can Christians do to protect their freedom to wish someone Merry Christmas? How can they end their allegedly relentless persecution in a nation in which about 80 percent of the population openly and freely shares their religious faith? Give money to fanatics like the people at Liberty Institute! From the group’s email:
To get ready to respond to this year’s expected onslaught, I am establishing a special Christmas Defense Fund to pay the costs to protect the right of Christians to exercise their free speech and religious liberty rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
My goal is to raise $110,000 for the Christmas Defense Fund. Will you please help?
The Christmas Defense Fund? Seriously?
Liberty Institute, by the way, is the same group that claims social studies teachers in Texas are anti-Christmas zealots because some suggested listing Easter instead of Christmas as an example of a Christian holiday in proposed curriculum standards two years ago.
You know, it is increasingly difficult to escape the conclusion that the folks at Liberty Institute think Christians are real saps.
13 thoughts on “‘Tis the ‘War on Christmas’ Silly Season”
The truly funny part of this is that the original “War on Christmas” in North America was in Massachusetts, and was conducted by the pilgrim “fathers”. Celebrating Christmas could get you some time in the gaol, or perhaps some more immediately uncomfortable treatment.
So, the “War On Christmas” is actually a Core American Value. We need more warriors against Christmas, if we are to be True Americans.
Here is my blog to combat the silliness.
Here is a quote from Liberty Institute’s Website posted under their “Freedom of Religion vs Freedom of Worship” banner:
“For those who are Christians, we’re called to live our religion, not just observe services on Sundays. An attempt to protect only the “freedom of worship” is a step toward banishing religious expression outside of the church setting in all its forms.”
Their belief system is anything but liberty….it is a combination of fascism and a fundamentalist theocracy…..a Christian Jihad raging a “war”. It’s the wisdom and civility of the U.S. Constitution that keeps extremist groups like Liberty Institute from waging an all out war against a secular government, replacing our Constitution with Biblical Scripture as interpreted by this and other radical extremist groups.
As long as there are retail merchants in America, Christmas is pretty darn safe.
It wouldn’t be December in America without a bit of Liberty Institute idiocy. Ahh…now I know all is right in the world. Snark.
The War on Christmas is obvious for all to see! I mean, how could you miss that 30-foot Christmas tree at the mall on October 24th??
Or Black Friday? (Wear a gas mask and shop until you drop!) Or Small Business Saturday? (buy, Buy, B U Y and support your local businesses by BUYING!!!! Spend NOW!) Or Cyber Monday? (Got pepper spray? Recovering from getting trampled on Saturday? No problem! Shop, Shop, SHOP from the convenience of your home! Deals, Deals, DEALS – and FREE SHIPPING!!!)
There’s a War on Christmas, all right, and the ammunition being used are 2-dollar waffle irons, a Must Have for every Christian family! Damn those Walton Family liberals in Bentonville, Arkansas and their atheist Wal-Marts!
Today’s wacko fundamentalists are the descendents of the New England Puritans who forbade the celebration of Christmas as being too Catholic or too Anglican, the same folks who kicked out of Massachusetts Roger Williams, the Baptist who introduced the idea of separation of church and state in the early 17th century. — Edd Doerr, arlinc.org
Oh my gosh! Imagine that, the largest group of religions in the United States, Christians all, are being PERSECUTED. Uhh…by WHO?
There are a few things that just about make me guffaw about this nonsense. First, Christmas was never the big deal it was today. Early Christianity, in its rush to convert pagans to their then new religion, adopted various pagan holidays and renamed them things like Easter (after the goddess of fertility, Ishtar) and several others. Saturnalia, an ancient Roman festival involved the giving of gifts and greenery was brought into homes, etc. It was around the winder Solstice when the sun began to reverse its course and held the promise of bringing spring and warmer weather to Europe.
It was a convenient way for the Christian church to meld their advent of the Christ. So December 25 became Christmas Day. However there is one GLARING problem with all of that. Draw a line from Jerusalem to Dallas. Jerusalem is at approximately 32 degrees North while Dallas is about 31 degrees North. They have, in other words, about the same kind of weather that we do. It snows in Jerusalem about as often as it does in Dallas.
The point I am making is that according to the story of the birth of Jesus, the shepherds were tending their flocks in the fields. THAT DOES NOT HAPPEN IN THE DEAD OF WINTER, does it? So Jesus had to be born in the spring, not the winter.
My religion does not recognize Jesus as the Messiah so I really could care less about the holiday one way or the other, but I wish people I meet a Merry Christmas, not have a nice holiday. If the wish me a Merry Christmas in return I just thank them and smile. Why should I ruin anyone’s holiday?
My one and only gripe about Christians is that they do not do what their guy told them to do. In Matthew 6:6 he said, When you want to pray, here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you cwon’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace. Message Bible Mt. 6:6
They lament that prayer in school was taken away from them by the ungodly liberals in Congress. Wrong. It was taken away from them by Jesus the Christ. So what is their major maladjustment? In answer to the question as to what would Jesus do when he wanted to pray…see above.
fwmetro, and one might add that the Lord’s Prayer is introduced (iirc in the same chapter) with the explicit purpose to make praying simple, reducing it to the basic stuff instead of the usual flowery words that are more to please the listener than the deity. Today he would probably hand out a (simple) form: Please mark your needs on the list. For special needs please use backside and try to be as concise as possible. You can send it in easily by prayer mill or just vocally. Please put form into recycling bin afterwards or, even better, erase entries and reuse! 😉
“Squashing all public expression of faith”? Nonsense. One local (I’m VA-based) Atheist group is considering a field trip to Loudoun County to see the public religious displays there, and sending a thank-you note to AG Cuccinelli for his support of them.
Of course, seven of the ten religious positions displayed are more Freethinker than Christian, but since (as the Christians assure us) Atheism requires a little bit of faith, that’s still a public expression of faith, right?
Yes, atheism requires a minute quantity of faith. You can’t infer a conclusion until you have prior premises to infer from and rules to infer by; and the ultimate axiom starting points are taken as valid without reference to priors– “on faith”. Most people, however, don’t consider the amount of faith involved (for say, the Axiom of the Unordered Pair and the other ultimate starting axioms) to be particularly impressive.
Hartmut, I could not agree with you more if I tried. It isn’t just Christians who don’t bother to read their religion’s scriptures, but since I’m mostly familiar with my own religion and Christianity, I wonder if some Christians think that their God has ADD. Over and over and over again they say father, God, please listen God father to our supplications oh lord god father … It is downright silly!
My religion has gone overboard by having blessings before, during and after certain prayers. The blessings are infinity longer than the actual prayer! There is nothing in my religion that demands that we get together for corporate worship. There are certain prayers that may not be said unless ten or more people are present (spell people MEN). One might think that excluding women from certain religious religious duties is discrimination; it isn’t.
In our morning prayers men thank God for not making them a woman while women say thank you for making me according to your will. That is because none of the women at the foot of Mt. Sinai gave gold to make the golden calf. They did according to God’s will and as a reward, we are excused from many religious obligations that men must bear. Also, we’re excused because we’re the ones who have to bring up the children and take care of them; we can’t do that if we’re rushing off to the house of prayer all the time.
I seldom attend any formal services because I’m in chronic intractable pain even thought I’m on some pretty strong pain relievers that would knock a horse on it’s tush, the pain breaks through and when it does I scream, disrupting the services.
Religion is fun in a way, but it is also responsible for more deaths than any other cause in the world. Just yesterday the Arabs in Iraq were at it again, the Sunnis and the other group killed each other over slight differences in what they believe.
Ever want to dig a deep hole and crawl inside just to get away from the world for a little bit?
Yep Beverly. With a few exceptions, I have generally found that women are much better followers of their religion, whatever it might be, than the men. Jacques Ellul has argued that women are the pinnacle of creation because the evolutionary scale goes from least complex to most complex. Because Eve was the culmination of God’s creative activity, she is also the culmination of evolution (at least for right now). So, the angels were created a little higher than humanity, and women were created a little higher than men. This world will never be right until God takes charge of it, but putting women in charge would make it a whole lot better place as an interim measure.