Monday, December 21, 2009

What's wrong with saying Merry Christmas?

I fully appreciate the fact that we live in a world where different people practice different faiths. In fact, I support America's Freedom of Religion right. However, I cannot be a consumer of popular media without being critical. Season's Greetings and Happy Holidays are slogans used to neutralize the religious time. I have many friends of many faiths, and none of them would rather substitute genuine expressions with universal neutrality. What's wrong with saying Happy Hanukkah? Happy Kwanzaa? Merry Christmas?

I think if you know someone of a certain faith and you care enough to express your kindness to them by wishing them well on their particular holiday, that would generally be respected. When we say Happy Holidays and Season's Greetings, we assume an inherently negative position (i.e. we don't know each other on deeper levels, or we don't care enough to get it right, or maybe we're afraid). We just won't take a chance for fear of offending someone. Most people I know don't take offense when you offer a personalized greeting on their holiday.

I am a Christian and my faith teaches me to treat all people as children of God. And if monotheism is accurate, then this teaching fits all. So let me say Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah and Happy Kwanzaa to the people these salutations apply to. We are all on a journey of faith. Let us hope for each other. And let me apologize for not knowing any others during this time that I have failed to mention. It's a big world, but I'm making an honest effort to do what is meaningful. I won't say Season's Greetings or Happy Holidays as these watered-down commercial slogans are offensive to me personally.

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