This week’s crapdate:
“I DO NOT CARE IF THIS DOES OFFEND SOMEONE”¦THIS IS WHAT I BELIEVE!!! I AM SICK AND TIRED OF EVERY YEAR WHEN CHRISTMAS COMES AROUND THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO WANT TO TAKE CHRIST OUT OF CHRISTMAS BECAUSE IT MIGHT OFFEND SOMEONE. WELL, HOW ABOUT ALL OF THE CHRISTIANS?!? WHAT ABOUT OFFENDING US BECAUSE YOU ARE TAKING OUR CHRIST OUT OF CHRISTMAS?!? CHRIST IS CHRISTMAS!!! IF YOU AREN’T CELEBRATING CHRIST, THEN WHY ARE YOU CELEBRATING?!? CHRISTMAS IS ABOUT THE BIRTH OF OUR SAVIOR!!! CHRISTMAS IS ONE OF A FEW HOLIDAYS LEFT THAT CELEBRATE “MY” CHRIST!!! LEAVE “MY” CHRISTMAS ALONE!!! TELL EVERYONE MERRY CHRISTMAS, NOT HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!! RE-POST IF YOU’RE NOT ASHAMED!!!”
I’m going to give you a second to recover from all of the yelling.
Okay. Short answer to something like this:
“Nobody is bothering ‘your’ Christ. If ‘you’ want to celebrate ‘your’ Christ, please, do so. If ‘you’ are so aggravated that other people aren’t celebrating ‘your’ Christ, perhaps you should go back and read what ‘your’ Christ thought about loving thy neighbor.”
Oh, where to begin.
Let’s begin with Christmas itself, and the idea that somebody might be stealing a holiday that does not belong to them. Just to remind everybody, Jesus’ birthday was the 25th of December. Right?
No. From origin-of-christmas.com: “However, most of what we witness on December 25th each year has absolutely nothing to do with that blessed day [the birth of Christ], which probably occurred in late summer or early fall about 2,000 years ago.”
Okay, so they picked a day to celebrate Christ’s birth, just like they pick a day to observe Presidents’ Day every year, no biggie, it’s still ‘my’ Christmas.
But that’s not even close to the truth. December 25th was chosen for a reason, that being the birthday of the pagan god Mithra. The thing is, there was a wildly popular pagan festival, Saturnalia, that was celebrated each year at this time, marked by revelry and sexual freedom. Christians commandeered it in the 4th century because they wanted to convert the pagan masses ““ they promised that if the pagans converted, they could still keep their festival.
The crapdate is asserting that somebody is stealing their (the Christians’) holiday and turning it into their own (the non-Christians). This is what is known as irony.
The crapdate goes on to insist that the celebrations that go along with Christmas are intended to honor the birth of Christ. Again, this is absolutely false. In order to persuade the pagans to convert, the Christians “adopted” many of their celebratory rituals.
That Christmas tree? Haven’t you ever wondered why Christians would be worshipping a tree? It’s because that was a tradition that was lifted from the pagans. The mistletoe? This is a combination of Norse mythology and the sexual celebrations that went on in the Saturnalia festival (Christians are not well known for sex positivity, haven’t you ever suspected why they might be encouraging people to run around kissing strangers? Under a plant?). Christmas caroling? That was adapted from the Saturnalia practice of drunken singing in the streets.
So the line about “if you aren’t celebrating Christ, then why are you celebrating,” is, in and of itself, absurd. If the person who posted the crapdate is celebrating in the typical manner, their celebrations are actually rooted in non-Christian traditions.
Let’s look at that further. “If you aren’t celebrating Christ, then why are you celebrating?” I would wager a guess that the poster of the crapdate celebrates lots of events in his or her own life — a new job, the birth of a child, a marriage — and even if they are very devout and keep Christ forever in their mind, they are still celebrating something other than Christ.
And beyond that, the poster is suggesting that a non-Christian life is one in which there should be no joy. According to the Pew Research Center, 21.6% of Americans are not Christian. To suggest that they are not allowed to celebrate anything is, simply put, offensive. Not in the, “Oh, you aren’t using PC language and so I’m offended” kind of way, but in the “your speech is hurtful and hateful” kind of way. The poster is, in essence, saying that one out of every five people in America (not to mention the two out of three people in the world) has no reason to celebrate. Disgusting.
The next idea, that Christmas is one of the few holidays left that celebrates Christ, is puzzling to me. In America, you are free to celebrate any holiday you choose in any way you like. If the poster doesn’t believe that they have the chance to celebrate Christ often enough, they should just celebrate him more.
But if what they are really saying is that Christmas is one of the few government-sanctioned holidays that celebrates Christ, this is an issue. The government should not be sanctioning any holidays that are religion-specific. The government has no business being involved with religion, but don’t take my word for it, just look at the First Amendment. In case you are confused, crapdate poster, the government stays out of religion not so that it can force people to say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas,” but so that, should there come a time when the majority of Americans aren’t Christian, you are protected from celebrating in a way that you don’t believe is right.
And please, by all means, go around telling people “Merry Christmas,” instead of “Happy Holidays,” because what is really important when you are wishing somebody well is that your point of view is the most important. Who cares if you are making somebody else uncomfortable? If you were wishing somebody well because you actually wished that they would feel well, you would have to think about their point of view, which is, of course, inconceivable.
And finally. The call for re-posting, which in this case tries to shame people into pushing it forward. Yes. Re-post if you aren’t ashamed to lay sole claim on somebody else’s holiday, and then bitch about other people not doing the same. The Christians apparently felt no shame when they appropriated the holiday from the pagans for their own gain, why should you?