By now, I’m sure y’all have heard about the so-called War on Christmas. Because, you know, Christians in America are an oppressed group. Unlike Jews, Muslims, pagans of various stripes, or atheists. It’s not like their God is in the pledge that children have to speak every day… oh, wait, it is. Well, it’s not like the majority of their religious holidays are national holidays… oh, wait, they are. Uh. Er. They’re oppressed, really! I mean, prayer in school has been outlawed, evolution is taught in science class, the god-given commandments are not allowed to be in public buildings, and now… now they have to put up with “PC” phrases such as “Happy Holidays” and “Season’s Greetings” being said alongside “Merry Christmas”. If this continues, people of other faiths (or lack of faith) might start thinking that their beliefs are equal to those of the God Warriors!
I, myself, became a casualty of this vicious war when I was dealing with a credit card issue just a few days ago.
I was on the phone with the representative and after we had resolved everything she said, “Ha… Merry Christmas.”
I replied, “And a Happy Holidays to you.” Truth be told, what I really had wanted to say was, “Where the hell do you get off assuming that I celebrate Christmas?” But, really, it might not have been the rep’s fault. From the way she started saying something else, it sounds like it’s company policy. And that, my friends, is just not cool.
In other related news, my mom was at Safeway today getting a bunch of stuff for dinner (we’re celebrating my sister’s b-day ’cause she’s in town and so mom is making the main course, I’m making soup, and my sister’s fiance is making her cake) and she wanted to pick up a nice holiday card for her friend. Safeway stocks Hallmark cards, by the way. Row after row had “Merry Christmas” but nary a “Happy Holidays”, “Season’s Greetings”, or even “Happy Hannukah” was to be seen. She searched and searched and searched and, just as she was about to give up, the person working that area (described as “a nice old lady”) asked her if she needed any help.
“Why, yes,” she said as nicely as possible. “I’m looking for a holiday card, but all I see are ones that say ‘Merry Christmas’.”
“Oh,” the employee said, “Let me help you find one.”
So, she searched and searched while my mom (in a still nice, but loud enough voice to attract attention) talked about how she was so surprised, since she’s never had trouble finding a proper holiday card before. After a little bit, the employee asked mom why a Christmas card wouldn’t just suffice.
“So you’re saying that I should give my Jewish friends a Christmas card?!” was Mom’s response.
Abashed at her suggestion when it was stated like that, the employee replied, “Oh, no. Of course not. We’ll find something suitable.”
At the point where she was venturing into the generic “Thank You” cards, my mom had to gently tell her that, no, she didn’t want a card that said “thanks”; she wanted a holiday card. When none were to be found, she told the employee that it was all right and she’d just see if she had any left over from last year. At that point, a few other customers had been looking over the shelves (as most of us will do when someone is having trouble with something) and coming up empty, as well. Thanking the employee for her help, mom checked out with her purchases and came home sans-holiday card. With any luck, the employee will tell her boss that they lost a customer because of the lack of appropriate holiday cards.
I’d just like to give a big “thumbs down” to Safeway/Hallmark for excluding me, my family, and our non-Christian friends with your Christian-only holiday cards. I’m sick of being excluded by the wingnut branch of Christians who think that inclusive language or policies are an “attack” on Christianity. No, idiots, the attack is on the groups you’re trying to exclude.