Thanksgiving has come and gone. Now students find themselves rededicating to their studies in hopes of pulling their grades up since the midterm lapse. Last assignments are being turned in, final exams are being written and a few of the more merciful professors are offering extra credit assignments.
This all means that the Christmas season is officially upon us.
It’s a season of giving, of sharing with one another, of spending time with family and close friends.
It is also a season of war, of divisive rhetoric and false-flag maneuvering. At least that has been the case for the last three years with Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly.
Every Christmas since the 2004 season, O’Reilly has launched what he would have the public believe is an exposé on a “secular humanist conspiracy” to remove all religious traditions from the public square in order to pass unpopular legislation such as the legalization of drugs and prostitution, gay marriage and at-will abortions. According to O’Reilly, the destruction of Christmas would be their coup de grâce.
Last year, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport become the primary battleground of the so called “war on Christmas,” after airport officials opted to remove the eight Christmas trees on display after a local Rabbi, Elazar Bogomilsky requested they erect an eight-foot menorah in honor of Jewish travelers.
Bogomilsky’s attorney, Harvey Grad, told the Seattle Times that the FBI got involved in the ensuing furor once Bogomilsky started receiving death threats.
Oh, tidings of comfort and Joy!
What has to be the most absurd thing about this contrived war is that in a country whose populace is 80 percent Christian, according to a 2002 poll conducted by the Pew Global Attitudes Project, the prospect of removing religious holidays from the public square would be an un-winnable battle.
What’s more, the current overly commercialized state of Christmas practices are probably the strongest enemy to faith and religious holidays currently in existence.
Consider this: in the post-911 era, American citizens have been encouraged to observe any and all holidays with particular fervor as a show of our resolve to live life as we always have. This has created a social environment in which faith, patriotism, and the nationalist identity paradigm are all rolled into one rather nebulous concept. The result has been the corruption and bastardization of all three.
Though unspoken, current holiday philosophies can be readily observed in the behavior of the public at large.
Buy a bigger TV or the terrorists will win. Camp overnight in the parking lot of the local Target store to ensure completion of all shopping lists because Jesus wants you to be happy.
Retailers now attempt to launch the Christmas season as early as Sept. 1, in hopes of spurring early shopping before Wall Street’s end-of-year gloom and doom reports prompt moderation in spending.
Max out your credit cards or the terrorists will win.
Affluence and self-indulgence are the requisite virtues among all God-fearing patriots.
It’s not Christmas anymore. It’s a three-month long version of Fat Tuesday sponsored in part by Wal-Mart, the Republican Party and the Department of Homeland Security. If there are those who wish to remove any religious connotation from seasonal celebrations, their efforts should not be seen so much as an assault on the spirit of Christmas but a requiem for something that is already dead. The de-publicizing of Christmas would probably affect some sort of renewal or purification of its true spirit.
In past wartimes like WWI and WWII, it was customary to call a truce during the week between Christmas and New Year’s.
If only there was somebody who might send O’Reilly a formal request for a holiday truce, which he could read right after he gets done drinking blood from the neck stumps of beheaded babies. It might be the only way to enjoy a little peace on earth for a few weeks. But he probably wouldn’t be Christian enough to accept it.