This holiday season of winding up the year with celebrations is one of my favorite times of the year. It seems right to focus preparations for the start of a new year on tidings of comfort and joy—to think of peace on earth and goodwill toward mankind from both human and divine perspectives.
If we are serious about our dreams of glad tidings of universal joy and life unbridled, then we should be willing to state them without fear. At the same moment, we should be just as willing to grant others the freedom we seek.
I am a Christian, how good and faithful I might be is ultimately a matter between God and I. So, casting the evaluation of others to the wind, I state my faith in Jesus. The most inoffensive thing I can do in connection with that faith is to wish all I meet a Merry Christmas.
Strange that such a joyous greeting is considered bigoted and offensive to the homogenous, generic people of the world. When a person wishes me a Happy Hanukkah, I know am given a glimpse into his/her most precious faith and I can, for the briefest of moments, share their joy. The same may be said of the person who wishes me a Happy Kwanzaa.
I may not share the holiday in the same fashion as they do, but I appreciate their willingness to state their belief proudly and positively. That is the transparency and honest everyone talks about and does nothing to promote.
When someone says, “Happy Holidays”, I have no idea what they are saying. Is it that they believe vaguely in all, or is it they believe in none? Are they thinking, or simply being swept along in a mindless mass?
I once worked in a sewage treatment plant. We had a placard in our lab that read, “Dilution is not the solution to pollution”. Dilution seems to me to be the real object of the Happy Holidays crowd.
Firmly held beliefs are a danger to those who believe in nothing, create nothing, and give nothing of themselves—who live vicariously through the decrees of “experts”.
This country began with a thumbing of our corporate noses to a king. Those rebels then gathered together and argued among themselves about what they were to do next. I am currently reading James Madison and the Struggle for the Bill of Rights. Those men debating whether to adopt the Constitution were as polarized as the present political factions.
This was a time in which men fought duels over insults. Offend somebody and you might be facing them with a pistol in hand. They argued like they were married, but political stance was not equated with personal worth, sincerity, or honesty.
I believe the reason they were able to hammer out a solution was that each man stated his belief upfront, without fear that such a pronouncement diminished him as a person. On the contrary, a willingness to state an opinion, even an opposite one, was a mark of personal integrity and honesty.
My point? Say, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, and Happy Hanukkah, like you really mean it. It is not an offense to any but those too dishonest to speak their mind—the undercover haters, racists, and bigots who would stifle all others.
So, to my friends, family, and detractors, I wish you a Merry Christmas!
Sic Semper Tyrannis