Thursday, December 09, 2004
The Spirit of Scrooge
I’m not what you’d call a Christian in any strict denominational sense, but I like Christmas as much as anyone, complete with all of the familiar traditions and rituals. Beyond its religious significance, the holiday season has always been, for me, about spreading good cheer. Who wouldn’t want that?
Well, I’ll you who. It’s the misguided do-gooders and petty meddlers who seem to come out of the woodwork every year about this time preaching their demented brand of politically correct tolerance. It’s the ACLU and their minion of church-and-state paranoids. And it’s the plain old crabby nit-wits who find just about everything around them offensive in some way or another.
This latest trend of anti-Christmas sentiment has gotten me a little bewildered and distressed. For God’s sake, what’s the deal? Is it that “peace on Earth” thing? Maybe it’s that “good will towards men” that has these ninnies in such a winter snit. It’s gotten downright pathological.
Noelophobia is cropping up all over the world. In Canada, city officials in Toronto tried to rename their Christmas tree a “holiday tree.” The Royal Canadian Mint felt compelled to change a commercial featuring “The Twelve Days of Christmas” by changing the well known song to “The Twelve Days of Giving.” In Melbourn, several Australian kindergartens banned Santa Claus from their year-end Christmas parties because they feared they might offend someone. So they replaced Santa with a clown.
Here in the U.S., Scrooge’s syndrome is infecting the country in plague-like proportions. City employees in King County, Washington were forbidden to exchange Christmas and Hanukkah cards. Arizona Attorney General Gale Garriot issued an official ban on state employees exchanging anything with any religious significance. Who has that kind of time on their hands that they can run around conducting Christmas inspections? What’s next—Holiday goon squads confiscating Yuletide decorations and busting Christmas carolers?
In New Jersey, the South Orange School District has had a long-standing ban on Christmas songs with lyrics containing religious references. This year that just wasn’t enough. In an effort to make their school safe from the subtle and subversive influences of Christianity, they banned all instrumental music that might suggest religious content in its title. It’s a shame that our public schools have become such a popular target of the holiday vigilantes. In Grinch-like fashion they’re maniacally intent on removing all vestiges of Christmas. One can only wonder what sort of depraved thrill they get from picking on innocent children.
A Pennsylvania fourth-grader was prohibited from handing out Christmas cards to classmates. Two middle school students in Rochester, Minn., were disciplined for ending a skit by saying, “We hope you all have a merry Christmas.” A teacher in Illinois was told by her principal not to read a book about Christmas to her second-graders, even though the book came from their school library. The superintendent of the Silverton Ore. School District ordered students remove all religious holiday decorations from their lockers. Who can logically explain this kind of derangement? Well, you can’t. Such is the nature of Christmas anxiety disorder.
Many of our schools have become risky environments. Drugs, guns, and gang violence have compelled administrators to take preventative measures like security guards, metal detectors, and drug-sniffing dogs. Now you can add Christmas to the list of dangerous materials that threaten our schools. Soon we’ll likely see scenarios like this: “Hand over those drugs…and the knife. You’re not bringing that gun in here…hand it over…hey, the ammo too. Just a minute, where do you think you’re going? Leave that Christmas paraphernalia here.”
Holiday intolerance. Great examples of how the PC police want to establish total secularism anywhere outside of church.
I suspect the main thing saving the holiday season, even in its secular form is the fact that our economic system is so driven by year end spending.
The spirit of Scrooge be with you - oops! I forget! some schools think the Christmas Carol too religious a story to have at their schools.