Declaring War on the War on the War on the War on the War on Christmas

Categories: Get Off My Lawn

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Man. I cannot believe it. Just got back in the house. Catching my breath. Had to wade into the crowd out there on the street. Major neighborhood squall.

We've been waiting 20 years for the city to patch our street. They have big crews out there now doing it -- and a bang-up job from what I have seen so far. So one of my neighbors goes out there this morning and tries to halt the crews from working because she says they shouldn't be doing street repairs "this close to Christmas."

This close to what?

The squall is over. The city is going on with the work, but it took an hour. I'm on the edge of the crowd looking around at everybody in a hard-hat trying to guess how much they're getting paid for that hour of lost labor. I'm sure we cost somebody at least 200 bucks.

Christmas? I just don't get it. "And then the the angel said unto Mary, 'I almost forgot. No street work for a couple weeks, OK, dear?'"

Charlie Brown Christmas.jpg
Gerald Britt, a former pastor and one of our community's most thoughtful writers, has an op-ed piece in today's Dallas Morning News calling for a truce in the war on Christmas. War on Christmas? What war on Christmas?

Oh, wait. Here it is, on the same page. Another op-ed piece, this one by Mark Davis, who is, like Britt, a resident of our city. Davis says: "In the battle over the Nativity scene on courthouse property in Athens, Texas, count me among the Christians who support leaving it alone and telling the obnoxiously titled Freedom From Religion Foundation to take a hike."

Take a hike? When did Christmas get so damned on-the-muscle? I read stuff like this, and I imagine Davis on a horse with a broadsword, wearing a suit of armor with a big cross the back, riding up to a Muslim household in Southlake screaming, "Christmas or the sword!"

Why Christmas? What's going on? Why has Christmas gone so crazy?

We drove through the Park Cities the other night down the big Christmas lights streets. I don't know what to tell you. It looked to me more like the Las Vegas strip than anything I remember about Christmas when I was a kid 100 years ago.

I grew up in a very Christian household. Christmas was a holy day -- quiet, modest, very churchy. Very un-Vegasy. And we lived in a diverse community with lots of non-Christians. We said, "Happy Holidays," because the last thing we wanted to do was make some other kid who wasn't from a Christian household have to stop and think about why we were oblivious to his own religion or his holiday or lack thereof. The point being, I guess, that we were not oblivious.

I have another question. Back in the day, I remember conservative Christians as not drinking. Much. At least not getting caught. When did they change that law? The closer I get to the Park Cities, the more Christmas feels like some kind of Baptist Saturnalia. Baptist Vegas Saturnalia with a broadsword.

And another thing. When did old rich white people start getting so damned paranoid? It's embarrassing. I thought old rich white people were supposed to be arrogant. That was the one thing we could count on them for. Now they all sound like the crazy guy at the bus stop with the poster about aliens implanting microchips in his privates.

It's like their biggest craving in life is to be an oppressed minority. It's so strange. And, anyway, lots of luck with that. Most of the ones I know would have an easier time signing up with the ballet.

Wait. I just had a thought. The light bulb goes off. Paranoid. Hyper. Way over the top with the lights. Paranoid again. You know what Park Cities Christmas may really look like?

Christmas for Adderall abusers.

Could I be on to something? A historic crossroads, perhaps? Christianity meets dextroamphetamine? As Jerry Lee Lewis says, think about it.

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88 comments
DoubleOJoe
DoubleOJoe

"I remember conservative Christians as not drinking. Much. At least not getting caught."

Do you know the difference between Methodists and Baptists?

Methodists will say "Hello" to each other in the liquor store.

guest
guest

Jesus just told me in a personal revelation that you should all take your christmas lights, santa statues, christmas trees, and anything else related to it...and stick it up y'alls rectums! Merry Xmas, biotches

Diane Birdwell
Diane Birdwell

You know what? It just occurred to me that the people MOST offended and doggedly defending of Nativity Scenes in public squares, on gov't property, are mostly Protestant. When they defend statues, which is what we are talking about here, they say they are just being Christian, yet as a Catholic, when we kneel in front of one in contemplation, we are "praying" to them? Make up your mind, fundamentalists. Are you saying you WORSHIP these stautes, hmmmm?

You know, maybe if someone would ask them about this, I would love to hear the answer.

Danderson
Danderson

To quote Hitch, "Religion poisons *everything*". Think about it.

Grumpy Demo
Grumpy Demo

Jesus' mom was an unwed teenage mother and after his birth his family became illegals in Egypt,

just sayin.

RTGolden
RTGolden

Isn't this holiday supposed to be about gathering as much crap as you can get people to give you, so you can take it back to the stores next week and get the crap you really wanted?

Merry Christmas Everyone!
Merry Christmas Everyone!

I wish my friends a Happy Rosh Hashana, Happy Ramadan and more throughout the year.  I'm not oblivious.  And you know what, if I go out of  my way to wish them a Happy *fill in the blank with a holiday that's important to them*, then why should I get looks and frowns pressuring me to say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas this time of year?  My decision as of 3 years ago?  I shouldn't.  So I wish Merry Christmas away...and if I know they're celebrating Hannukah or another holiday throughout the year, I send well wishes on that day, as well.  The idea that we're not supposed to say Christmas to be respectful of other holidays is just a load.

Ponda Gooch
Ponda Gooch

Since Jesus was actually born in September and "Christmas" is just how the Christians hijacked a Roman holiday why all the fuss?

guest
guest

And to all a Good Night!

Perry Moore
Perry Moore

This year, we will again load up our rescue mutts, drive to the big city, and collectively gawk at the incredible light displays. Thanks to the Evil Rich, we will have a fine family time without being forced to spend the money that it takes to have that stuff in my yard. I am guilty of many sins, but envy is way, way down that list. Merry Christmas Mr. Schutze. May God bless you and all of your nasty little readers, even the rich ones.

Grumpy Demo
Grumpy Demo

Mark Davis is fifty pounds, a sex vacation and a drug addiction short of fulfilling his dream, of becoming  Rush Limbaugh.

Bless his heart he has given it his best effort:

http://mediamatters.org/search...

My favorite: 

Mark Davis: "The only group of people that America systemically gladly discriminates against now is white people"

After The Dallas Pravda News ran one of Davis' columns defending Brithers, I left a phone message with the editor pointing out that if they had more than 2 out of 12 editorial editors that were minorities they won't print such racist crap. They had Hashamoto call me back after he claimed there "was no proof Obama was a citizen" lets just say much yelling ensued. Hit dog howls.

Davis has the distinction of having a libelous posting removed, without comment byt the DMN too, http://blogs.dallasobserver.co....

William F. Buckley ran off the crazies like Mark Davis, the DMN embraces them.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

Betcha anything your neighbor gets madder than shit if she heads on over to Whole Foods and finds them closed today because their employees shouldn't be working so close to Christmas.

Borborygmus
Borborygmus

And just as I thought the argument was white lights vs. multi-colored. *

Tad Banyon
Tad Banyon

The usual argument is that the same Christians who demand everyone respect their need to pray over the public address system at a high school football game would be up in arms if someone suggested a Buddhist prayer instead. But its actually perfectly logical and reasonable. Christians, as believers in the only true religion, have a responsibility to make sure non-Christians are given every opportunity to learn the truth. Similarly, they have an obligation to make sure false religions like Judaism are not positioned as equals to Christianity, lest those who are weak-minded and easily confused fall prey to the wrong message. That's why what seems to be a simple expectation to respect all religions equally is considered a "war" on Christianity. Its more difficult to make the case for Christianity's superiority if its not given any more official public recognition than religions of the devil like Islam.I wish I had studied to be a preacherman. I love the freedom to manipulate ideas and facts any way you want. As long as you can find some tenuous way to tie it to Jeebus, you can pretty much say or do anything you want.

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Nothing brings out nuttiness like a blog discussion of religion.

Oak Cliff Townie
Oak Cliff Townie

"I grew up in a very Christian household. Christmas was a holy day -- quiet, modest, very churchy."

If their was any discussion at all it Those PAGAN ________ down the street who actually had lights up.

Bill Holston
Bill Holston

According to my faith, messengers announce the birth of Jesus, with the proclamation, Peace on Earth Good Will to Men. In the middle of the Civil War, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, mourning his son's severe battle wounds writes the poem, I heard the bells on Christmas day. "There is no peace on earth I said'. Some things never change. Instead of celebrating the Prince of Peace, which is what we Christians are supposed to be doing, we pick fights with our neighbors, in essence forcing them to celebrate Christmas. Really? Really?

I like my own tradition. We don't have a tree. We'll spend Christmas eve with my best friends, who are Jewish. They have a beautiful tree and a Menorah. We'll toast our friendship, and share a mixed grill of lamb and brats. Our kids, almost all adults now, who grew up together will all be there. 

My favorite Christmas story is of the Christmas truce during WWI, when German, English and French soldiers took a break from the killing to celebrate the holiday. May we do the same. 

Longfellow finished the song this way:Then pealed the bells more loud and deep: "God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!The Wrong shall fail,The Right prevail,With peace on earth, good-will to men!" Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday, Chanakuh Semeach. Peace. 

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

That's why you always bring TWO Baptists along fishing... Thay way you won't have to share your beer.

RTGolden
RTGolden

I'd love to be able to answer for that, but I was raised Catholic Lite (Lutheran), All the forgiveness, half the guilt.  I bailed on that when I read the writings by Luther they didn't give us in Confirmation classes.  Then I bailed on the rest of organized religion and just tried to live a good life.  Not sure if I succeeded, but I'm still alive and haven't gone to prison!Happy Christmas!

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

Hello!!! Protestant!!

"Protest" is right in the name!

*spoken in urgent whisper movie voice*   It's what they DO...  It's ALL THEY DO!

Perry Moore
Perry Moore

My wife, a practicing Bacchanalian, resents the continuous promotion of Saturnalianist practices in the name of Christianity. Can we all agree to celebrate Mardi Gras?

Guest
Guest

I think most people probably don't care what some random person says (or doesn't say) to them in relation to any given holiday. But, as you mention that there are people who might be offended by you wishing them a "happy" whatever they don't celebrate, there are also those who have expressed indignation when someone else chooses not to wish them a Merry Christmas.

Almost all of the "War on Christmas" rhetoric comes from instances in which people chose to say (or print, or whatever) something other than Merry Christmas (some of the leaving out Christmas is certainly ridiculous - Holiday Trees? - but some of it is perfectly innocuous - printing 'Happy Holidays' on a sales insert rather than 'Merry Christmas', etc. But even if some store chooses to call a pre-lit fake pine a "Holiday Tree", why should anybody be personally offended by that?)

guest
guest

Jesus, sat in front of me in my ninth grade geometry class and I believe his birthday was sometime in May...if i'm not mistaken,

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

It's no use trying to throw logic on a holy war fire.

RTGolden
RTGolden

I'm not being sarcastic or contrary here, just asking an honest question.  Does the DMN, a private corporation, have to have a board with representative demographic percentages? I mean, it would make sense in terms of being in touch with the city and meeting the news demands and needs of the population, but is it a legal requirement?

And yes, I know, on this board it is a foregone conclusion that the DMN is never ever in touch with the population of this city.

Guest
Guest

There's no proof Mark Davis is a citizen of this planet.

Phelps
Phelps

America is 80% white.  The editorial board is 83% white.

What is your bitch?  

PlanoDave
PlanoDave

Part of the problem with organized religion (as compared to "being a Christian") is that Christianity requires Orthodoxy (correct thoughts) as compared to Orthoplaxy (correct actions).  I see this as a major flaw.

My Catholic and United Methodist family members always grimace when I describe myself as Methodist/Buddhist/Taoist/Hindu.  I like being the Paella of religions.

Whatever you choose to celebrate this season, I truly hope that it brings you and your loved ones joy, happiness and love.

Warren Christomas
Warren Christomas

Also, nothing brings out bloggers like a nutty discussion of religion

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Such beautiful thoughts.Thank you.Incidentally, the Athena Foundation here in Dallas offers wonderful workshops based on ancient classics and poetry from all eras.  You might enjoy their offerings.

Paul
Paul

My wife and I occasionally put up a Hannukah bush ... and it is called the Festival of Lights ....

Have a happy merry wonderful peaceful kwanchrisnukah ...

Me? ... I am sincerely hoping for a drama free weekend ....

Montemalone
Montemalone

And don't forget that truce could have ended the war. The soldiers saw the idiocy in it, but the politicians forced the commanders to put an end to the peace.

Merry Christmas Everyone!
Merry Christmas Everyone!

It's catering to the grumpy lady or gentleman in line who chooses to go out of their way to complain to customer service and file lawsuits because they don't celebrate Christmas.  At least that's my take on it.  Your common store employee is instructed not to greet customers in a way they would and have historically cause a very small minority got their panties in a bunch.

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

Holy Water might be a more effective suppressant for Holy Fire.

But it might be a little too close to Christmas...

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

Better question: Does anybody really give a shit about the racial makeup of the editorial board of a dying rag like the DMN?

Grumpy Demo
Grumpy Demo

Dallas is only 40% White so you're admitting white are over represented by 200%, thanks. Also, at the time one black, one Bircher Asian, and no Latins is hardly representative.

PlanoDave
PlanoDave

Dallas ain't America when it comes to racial demographics...

Bill Holston
Bill Holston

By the way, enjoy your well deserved break teacher. You deserve it. Thanks for your service as a teacher. It's a hard and mostly thankless job. I hope you have a great holiday. I'll have to check out that Athena Foundation. 

Bill Holston
Bill Holston

have you seen the film, Joyeaux Noel about the event. It's a nice little movie about it. Yeah, politicians make wars, young men (and now women) fight them. Peace 

Guest
Guest

I don't know about that. First of all, I've never, ever heard of a lawsuit against a private business that had clerks saying "Merry Christmas". And plenty of stores that don't have such policies against saying "Merry Christmas" (or very loudly reversed such policies) still have workers who don't go out of their way to wish people a Merry Christmas and a small minority of people are offended by that.

In the end, though, what difference does it make if some private business doesn't want its employees to say a particular phrase or wants them to say something more inclusive that covers all the bases? How is anybody's life impacted by that one way or another? (And, related to that, why do you have a right to be offended by the actions of others if they do not have a right to be offended?)

More than half the time, store clerks don't tell me to have a nice day, and I still manage to have a perfectly fine day despite that. And they very rarely tell me to come back again, and yet I still manage to find my way back without their invitation.

If you can't have a Merry Christmas without some Wal-Mart clerk telling you to have one, then you've got bigger problems than any of this.

Phelps
Phelps

Are we going to keep picking arbitrary groups?  How about we just use your street?

The long and short of it is that you hate white people, and you want the number on the editorial board to be zero.

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