5 Things You Didn't Know About the "War on Christmas"

Categories: Random Ephemera

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Welcome once again to the most wonderful time of the year. Here in Houston the air is cool, the streets in River Oaks and Upper Kirby are festive as festive can be, gingerbread and peppermint-flavored everything adorns local drink menus, and the giant, soul-eating kraken that lives underneath the Galleria is already calling her annual sacrifices to her.

It's also a time to watch some of my fellow Houstonians re-apply their "Keep Christ in Christmas" bumper stickers so that they can't be mistaken for being on the wrong side of the totally made-up "War on Christmas." Every year there's yet another batch of yokels all eaten up with the belief that Christmas is somehow under attack from secular forces in order to, I don't know, make Jesus cry or something. It's martyrdom fan fiction written by people who have only the firstiest of First World problems.

While I could sit here for 700 words and lace a logical explanation about why the "War on Christmas" is stupid with penis jokes, instead I've got a better idea. If you've clicked on this link in a frothy rage, I want to tell you a few things you might not have realized about this war against the atheist liberal scum you think you're waging.

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JBS.org
5. The "War" Was Started By the John Birch Society: If you've never heard of the John Birch Society then you probably get a better night's sleep than I do. Founder Robert Welch, a candy manufacturer, started off with a fairly legitimate organization dedicated to fighting communism in 1958, but like most people who made fighting communism a life-long goal what he started turned into a paranoid conspiracy that accused everything from fluoridation of water to the Book of the Month Club to being sinister, subliminal plots from hidden American commies to overthrow the capitalist nation.

One of their earliest campaigns, though, was the idea that Christ was being eradicated from Christmas celebrations as a classic communist strike at undermining religious belief in order to make people less able to resist the state. From the 1959 pamphlet "There Goes Christmas?!" by Hubert Kregeloh:

"The UN fanatics launched their assault on Christmas in 1958, but too late to get very far before the holy day was at hand. They are already busy, however, at this very moment, on efforts to poison the 1959 Christmas season with their high-pressure propaganda. What they now want to put over on the American people is simply this: Department stores throughout the country are to utilize UN symbols and emblems as Christmas decorations."

Piece continues on next page.


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20 comments
Brent Tisdale
Brent Tisdale

As a person who attended a public school that OUTRIGHT forbid anyone to wear clothes that had anything remotely Christian on them, be it Christmas or just a shirt that said WWJD, but would let kids wear shirts with devils, and rap stars, and even other religious, and public figures that represented anti-Christian sentiment without so much as a batted eye, I think this article is a full load of crap. I live in Texas, in a very RED area, and people still pull their "I'm offended" crap when you say Merry Christmas to them. And it's not Jews, it's not Muslims, or Buddhists, is Atheists, 100% of the time. I know cause they usually make a big public to do about it in front of the whole world, mostly because they think they are making a point, but really, most people are looking at them thinking they are an idiot.

Jim Costello
Jim Costello

This article, to me, reads as the author is rolling his eyes at those that seems aware that Christmas is less about Christ and more about commercialism. Sure, there are some people that go ballistic about keeping "Christ" in Christmas and will go through nauseous extremes to get there opinions known.. but isn't the same happening in the aetheist community?

facebook39
facebook39

Christians just have to play the role of martyr.  It's part of their religious identity.  And they love war(s) too - just look at how that all played out in Europe for all those years.  Every time I hear one of these bible-worshippers compalin about the "victim society" it makes me think of what a large role they have had in creating it.

Josh Reddoch
Josh Reddoch

"The War on Christmas" is a ruse by those in the conservative media bubble to sell books to the choir. And it works. Those people get played each and every year. So long as there is money to be made, the 'War on Christmas" will continue...

Puller58
Puller58

Thanks for the JBS info.  Seemed like much of the current crop of grandstanders borrow a lot from Welch's racket.

wordlover
wordlover

I've always said 'Merry Christmas" ---- Whoever doesn't like it, can suck it.  Life is too short for this nonesense.  

rgillies
rgillies

You seem like a smart young man - it is hard to believe you are from Texas

dutchs1
dutchs1

The worst War on Christmas was waged by Oliver Cromwell and the Puritans in the 1600's. They actually DID ban Christmas.

Very few of our Christmas carols are very old. Most of the religious ones are 19th century and the secular ones mostly date from the 1940's and 1950's. Santa Claus took on his modern form in the 19th century, thanks in part to Thomas Nast, who also gave us the Democratic donkey and Republican elephant (and what's on YOUR resume?). Christmas as we know it basically came into existence along with mass consumer society in the 19th century.

Read C.S. Lewis "What Christmas Means to Me" for a comment on Christmas commercialism.

Anse
Anse

This manufactured scandal is not actually without merit. There is a War on Christmas. It's just being waged by capitalist retailers with a great deal of help from their righteous rightwing Christian conservative defenders. 

cfein
cfein

This has historically been my favorite part of the War On Christmas: The "HOLIDAY" ornaments that were carried in the Fox News store advertising Bill O'Really's show -- yeah, one of the main War on Christmas jesters. 

http://www.newscorpse.com/Pix/Oreilly_Holiday.jpg

drusilla.grey
drusilla.grey

One of my 8 year old daughter's friends told her that she (my daughter) isn't allowed to celebrate Christmas because her family isn't Christian. Understandably, my daughter was very upset. While we are atheist, we do find that the holiday celebrations and decorations liven up the darkest time of year - just like the pagans did. So I sat her doeb and explained the pagan history ofbvarious holidays and talked about how Christianity adopted them. Now she can explain to her friend why it is more than ok forbour family to celebrate a holiday that's been around longer than Christ while it is also ok for her friend's family to celebrate for their Jesus.

I find the "War on Christmas" to be like most things where religion is involved - very prejudiced. The Christians - not all, but the loudest ones at least - think religious freedom means they are free to push their beliefs on others bevause they are a majority, and anyone who believes otherwise is wrong or evil. This nonsense needs to stop. There is enough seasonal depression this time of year as it is. Let's not add more with ugly intolerance. Celebrate your Christmas or Yule or Solstice or Chanukah as you please (in your owb private space, not public), and respect how others choose to celebrate.

nyscof
nyscof

Fluoridation Opposition is Scientific, Respectable & Growing

Over 4,500professionals (including 360 dentists and 554 MD’s) urge that fluoridation be stopped because science shows fluoridation is ineffective and harmful. See statement: http://www.fluoridealert.org/researchers/professionals-statement/text/

Nobel Prize winner in Medicine, Dr. Arvid Carlsson, says, “Fluoridation is against all principles of modern pharmacology. It's really obsolete.”

Most dentists are trained to use politics and not science to promote fluoridation, according to Armfield and Melbye in the Journal of the American Dental Association .

Other studies show how dentists don’t keep current on new fluoride science, e.g, this study by Yoder http://tinyurl.com/Yoder

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

"As a person who attended a public school that OUTRIGHT forbid anyone to wear clothes that had anything remotely Christian on them, be it Christmas or just a shirt that said WWJD, but would let kids wear shirts with devils, and rap stars, and even other religious, and public figures that represented anti-Christian sentiment without so much as a batted eye, I think this article is a full load of crap."

I'm not calling you a liar... except, yes. Yes I am. You're lying. For Jesus. Which is weird.

spell_I_Cup
spell_I_Cup

@wordlover and nobody gives a flying shit if you say merry christmas or happy holidays or happy unicorn day for that matter.

dyoung112060
dyoung112060

@nyscof 

I'd like these folks to show me the STUDIES that show Fluoridation DOESN'T Fight Cavities!

cfein
cfein

@nyscof -- that is, New York State "Coalition" Opposed to Fluoride -- You certainly do stay busy. When you're not spamming every fluoride-related article in my town's paper, you're apparently scanning the interwebs for every single casual mention of fluoridation and posting your nonsense propaganda wherever the word appears. One would think you'd eventually grow tired of doing something so tireSOME.

dyoung112060
dyoung112060

@cfein @nyscof Well, it WASN'T in any of those links they had there !


What a surprise, a conspiracy NUT that can't back up their DELUSION, who would have thought ?

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

@cfein @nyscof It's a robot, love... a paranoid, conspiracy-theory ladened robot with access to the internet... Oh god, that's worse, isn't it?

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