View Full Version : Banning Christmas?
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 8:27pm
I read this in the Washington Times:
It seems that people in the USA are coming under increasing pressure to avoid using the word "Christmas" in case it offends non-Christians. For example, a "Christmas Tree" has been renamed as a "Community Tree". I have also heard that many kids are no longer allowed to sing christmas carols, or have had to change many of the words.
Is this sensible religious moderation, or is it political correctness gone insane?
My opinion is that anyone who gets offended by the word "Christmas" needs their head read. I am no christian but I have no problems with nativity scenes or christmas carols. Christmas is a fantastic time of the year and I won't put up with do-gooders trying to spoil it all.
For example, when the Chinese community celebrates Chinese New Year, we don't go around banning it. That's because it is great fun with all the fireworks etc. No non-Chinese person should be offended. Same should go for Christmas. You don't have to be christian to enjoy Christmas.
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 9:13pm
Is this sensible religious moderation, or is it political correctness gone insane?The latter.
Just how many pop stars who sing carols are Christian? And hasn't everyone heard non-Christians sing Christmas songs out of the Christmas mood? Eh.
If someone has problems with some words, he doesn't have to say or sing them. But to ban them? Oh damn, it looks like someone's banning Christianity. If it ever happens around here, I'm going to go sing carols in front of the parliament building.
"Community tree". Community nonsense.
We should ban the word "thinking". For many people it connects with intense experience of inexplicable pain in the head.
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 9:22pm
I think the word "Christmas" has transcended its original christian context to represent a special day for all sorts of people. If we ban it because of its original meaning then we'd better start banning a load of other things.
Oh no, better change the name of today (it's "Friday") as I'm offended by the reference to a Norse god. From now on, this is Fiveday. Woohoo, tomorrow is Sixday!
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 9:54pm
We could ban the word "Easter" because it's derived from the name of an Anglo-Saxon goddess called Easthru. Who cares?
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 9:55pm
Bah, people have celebratesd in midwonter for millennia - and there is notihing wrong sharing traditions.
I myself am not a christian, and yet I habve no trouble "suffering through" the religious overtones many people associate with the holiday; In my opinion, it is a good thing to remember that despite certain aspects of christianity being less-than palattable to some, myself included, it's not all that bad.
*looks at what she wrote* Err... I blame holida spirit.
To each his own, I say.
Thu, 9th Dec '04, 10:20pm
Christmas is still called "jul" (yule) in Sweden. It is a pretty universal midwinter feast for all religions and peoples. It actually shouldnt really matter what it is called.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 3:35am
Well, where I live, Christmas break is called Winter Break, which in my opinion makes more sense because the break actually is from Christmas Eve to the New Year. We also have a lot of people (esp. Chinese, Indian, and Pakistani immigrants) who are either atheist, Muslim, or Jewish to whom it would be silly to say, "What did you do on Christmas?"
Still, in America, at least, Christmas seems to have been subsumed the culture of America, and not Christianity; there are lots of non-Christians (especially families that want to settle in the US, such as Chinese and Korean immigrants) who put up Christmas trees, hand out gifts, and have friends over for Christmas.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 3:56am
It all started when they changed "Merry Christmas" to "Season's Greetings".
It went downhill from there...
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 5:55am
I will still say Merry Christmas, butcher--er sing Christmas Carols and do my Christmas shopping, and if anyone tries to correct me I'll tell them that they can shove their notions of Political correctness up their solid excrement escape duct.
Dark Haired Beauty
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 7:08am
I passed up shopping at a store cause they had Merry Xmas on the door. For pete's sake if you can put angels and such in the window you can surely take the time to Write out Merry Christmas
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 7:47am
Hmm ... it's definitely another UN plot! :eek: :eek: :eek:
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 8:04am
Yeah, well, why not celebrate Christmas with the new David Beckham/Posh Spice manger scene at Madame Tussaud's. (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20041208.wnativity1208/BNStory/Entertainment/) (For added fun, take a look at the three 'wise' men.)
This whole discussion seems a bit misguided to me. In fact, if I might be so bold, there's just a bit of hypocrisy, of having one's cake and eating it too...
1) Christmas is the most materialistic season of the year; November 26th, the day after US Thanksgiving, has traditionally been the heaviest shopping day of the year. Why? Start of the Christmas shopping season. What began (aside from pagan influences) as a day of feasting following a long period of fasting and contemplation of the life of Christ, with the small-scale exchange of gifts, has become the largest merchandizing, retail juggernaut in world history: the highest peak in the yearly wave of the global economy. Instead of quiet contemplation, we are exposed to non-stop advertisements, radio jingles, Christmas TV specials and the like, loudly shouting from all sides of society: buy, buy, buy! You want this, you need that, and above all, you should feel happy warm family thoughts while you buy these things, because after all, most of them are gifts, and you should feel happy, and this is your tradition, and tradition is good, and you owe it to yourself and your family to feel happy. Strange way to celebrate the life of someone who said "far easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the gates of heaven," who threw the money changers out of the temple, and who advocated building up one's fortune in heaven.
2) So who do we blame? Why, obviously, those meanie secular multi-culturalists want to limit public money used to promote the Christmas shopping season as Christian! As Christians are the majority in the US (shows like "Desperate Housewives" that testify to the lack of "moral values" in the US must really be for that non-Christmas-celebrating minority, no?), we should spend public money to make sure that all of the "religious" symbols, like Christmas trees, Creches, and the like take their rightful place next to all the stockings, parades, plastic lawn snowmen, "It's a Wonderful Life" reruns, Santa Claus lap-sittings, football games, and car commercials, because hey, we shouldn't forget to give a thought or two to Jesus while we're busy maxing out the Visa card.
3) I would have more respect for a position that said: look we as Christians are upset with the crass commercialization of our religious holiday, and if it has indeed become a secular buy and spend holiday bonanza, well then you're welcome to it; just leave our religious symbols out of it. But no: these Christian Coalition yahoos want to have their old-time (TM) religion served up fresh with some serious capitalist action. Cuz He's the reason for the season, from Silent Night to Jingle Bell Rock. Doesn't this seem a little odd to you?
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 8:56am
I really don't see what the big deal is. My family is agnostic (most have never gone to church a day in their life) and we celbrate Christmas just fine. I have also said Happy Chanukah to every one I've seen since Tuesday evening. And on the 26th, I will begin wishing everyone a Happy Kwanzaa.
If you aren't religious, take it in stride, and respond with a smile. No one is forcing you to convert.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 9:06am
Christmas was originally a pagan festival anyway, even the Christian meaning of Christmas has also been lost due to large corporations such as Coke making it more 'pc'.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 9:38am
far easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the gates of heaven I always thought it was 'rope' not 'camel' passing through the eye of the needle. But that's off-topic. Christmas rules. Long live Christmas.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 10:58am
Sounds suspiciously like the Christmas special of Southpark. It led to a very special school nativity.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 2:04pm
Christmas for me has never been about the birth of jesus or any religious factor. My family celebrated every year so you get rushed into it but never believed it. It became so bad that one day I asked what it was all about and for some reason they got quite mad at me :rolleyes:
Anyway to me Chrismas is about spending a nice evening with family or friends with a lot of great food and drinks. Don't really give a sh!t about the names.
Aldeth the Foppish Idiot
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 2:35pm
The problem I have with this is the reason you change the name of something to a more politically correct term is because you feel that some people might be offended by the original term. This suggests that some people would be offended by the word "Christ" or more broadly "Christmas". Who, specifically, are these people? Do we really have all that many people living in America that have become so hypersensitized that they could be offeneded by something like this?
Personally, I don't know anyone - or even know someone who knows anyone - who falls into this category. Not only with the word "Christ" but with all sorts of religious names like "Allah" or "Budda". To me, freedom to practice your religion should also include the ability to refer to things that have obvious religious or traditional significance by their religious or traditional names.
What this tells me is the number of people who find words like "Christmas" offensive are in the vast minority here in the U.S. According to the article, 96% of people celebrate Christmas. That seems a little high, as I have to assume that most non-Christians do not celebrate Christmas, and the percentage of Jews, Buddists, and Hindis in the U.S. probably exceed 4% of the population. Oh course, maybe they consider going to a Christmas party a week previous to Christmas as "celebrating the holiday" to get their 96% figure. Regardless while 4% of Americans do not celebrate Christmas, it's not like those 4% are offended by it. There is a very small fraction of that already very small fraction that are offended (I'm assuming that if you celebrate Christmas, you aren't offended by the word "Christmas").
This is where it goes too far. I'm all for treating everyone equally, and being politically correct when it is reasonable. I also think that there are times when the majority has to recognize the needs of the minority. We had this with the civil rights movement in the 60s, and more recently with the gay rights movement of today. However, these groups while minorities in society, still make up a significant percentage of the population. People who are offended by the term "Christmas" can only be referred to as an ultra-fringe group, and sorry, but those numbers simply aren't large enough to justify making the 99.9% of the population that doesn't have a problem with it conform to you.
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 2:40pm
So is Easter, St Patricks day, Halo'ween, other religious holidays under threat or is it just Christmas that is being singled out?
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 2:43pm
I've seen that episode of Southpark, it doesn't last. :D
Fri, 10th Dec '04, 5:11pm
Well, Christmas is essentially the most important Western holiday from a commercial point of view. On Easter, people might get together for a meal and color some eggs, while on St. Paddy's day, people might wear a green shirt and watch a parade on TV. On Halloween people spend some cash on costumes, scary movie rentals, and candy for the kids -- although this holiday is itself under assault by certain Christian groups who see it as a celebration of witchcraft and paganism (and of course it originally was some kind of societal pressure valve, to release all that pent-up paganism the day before All Saints Day). Thanksgiving you slaughter lots of turkeys. But Christmas is by far the peak of the yearly consumer economy, and is proceeded by well over a month of continuous build-up, weaving together a strange blend of religious feeling, warm family tradition propaganda, and a constant drumbeat of "buy buy buy." So it's a little different than the others.
Not that this isn't enjoyable to millions of people, of course. For those who said, "well, we enjoy celebrating Christmas, and believe that Christ should remain in Christmas even though we aren't religious in any way," I would guess that your roots are ethnically Christian, and so a nod to Christ is fine by you; kind of an acknowledgement of a shared cultural background.
For those outside of the Christian tradition, it's a little more mixed, and some people might feel left out. Hanukkah, for example, was traditionally a lesser holiday than Rosh Hashanah, but became far more significant as a way of catching some of the secular energy devoted in the West to Christmas, of not being left out. And of course, there's no barrier to celebrating other religion's holidays; in India, for example, Hindu's often celebrate Muslim holidays like Eid, and visa versa, because hey, who wants to be left out when everyone's feasting.
I guess my target was mostly those devout Christians who see no conflict between the secular materialism that has come to define Christmas and their own religious celebration. I suspect that there is a bit of discomfort with the consumer-fest Christmas has become, but it seems a bit disingenuous to lay all the blame at the feet of a few over-zealous folks for being PC. I mean, there's a huge economic engine running this thing, and it has the support of millions of people who really aren't that serious about Christianity, but take the "Christmas tradition," which includes Rudolph the Red-Nosed Raindeer and Christmas trees just as much or more than it has anything to do with remembering the birth of Christ. So I wonder if the religious police have really chosen the PC police because they're the far, far easier target, while the actual forces that are secularizing Christmas are far, far more difficult to address. Just imagine if a group of devout Christians tried to push through a ban on all secular Christmas traditions, and to say the the month before Christmas should be about fasting and contemplation rather than non-stop advertising. Just how far do you think *that* movement would go? :rolleyes:
I should close with the famous South Park song:
It's hard to be a Jew on Christmas
My Friends won't let me join in any games..
And I can't sing Christmas songs
Or decorate a Christmas tree..
Or leave water out for Rudolph
cos there's something wrong with me..
My people don't believe in Jesus Christ's divinity..
I'm a Jew, a Lonely Jew.. on Christmas.
Hanukkah is nice, but why is it,
That Santa passes over my house every year?
And instead of eating Ham
I have to eat Kosher Lekeesh..
Instead of Silent Night
I'm singing hou-hazch-tou-gavish..
And what the f*** is up
With lighting all these f***ing Candles, tell me please?
I'm a Jew, a Lonely Jew..
I'd be merry, but i'm Hebrew.. on Christmas.
Hey Little Boy, I can't help but hear,
You're feeling left out of Christmas Cheer..
But i've come to see that you shouldn't be sad
'Cos this is the one month that you shoud be glad..
Because it's nice to be a Jew on Christmas
You don't have to deal with the season at all..
You don't have to be on your best behaviour, or give to charity
You don't have to go to grandma's house with your alcoholic family..
And I don't have to sit on some fake Santa's lap
And have him breathe his stinky breath on me!
That's right! You're a Jew, a Stylin' Jew..
It's a good time, to be Hebrew.. on Christmas.
[ December 10, 2004, 17:26: Message edited by: Bion ]
Sat, 11th Dec '04, 2:34am
Christmas is just a great fun time of the year. Why can't we all just enjoy it? If you're not religious, don't go to mass. If you're worried about consumerism, don't go to the shopping malls. If you're worried about corny TV re-runs, turn off the TV.
Merry Christmas to all SPers (unless you're easily offended - in which case, just have a nice day).
Sat, 11th Dec '04, 2:50am
I see it as a scheme for businesses to get away with taking away another of our days off of work, although I'm thinking Thanksgiving will be the next to go before Christmas! We lost our Easter holiday three years ago, and New Years Eve two years ago. Right now, they're just planting the seed...
Sat, 11th Dec '04, 3:04pm
It's not a case of people getting offended by things and complaining about them. It's about the PC government trying to 'protect' minorities.
It must be so embarassing for the people being 'protected' when things like this are brought in.
This world is far too PC.
Sat, 11th Dec '04, 3:26pm
Oh, come on!
This is insane. If some people are actually offended by this, then let them, dammit!
All this PC crap has gone TOO FAR! :mad:
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 12:07am
In the UK, they have stopped using the word Christmas and are calling it "Winter Festival", some bull**** like that. It is not throughout the UK, just in one or two areas. Probably just Bradford and Coventry ^^. I guess it won't be long before all our celebrations are banned or forgotten. We could always convert to Muslim and celebrate our 'li2hfew;lizxcojkfw@#%$dytdsf or what ever they call it, nobody seems to have a problem with that.
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 3:08am
Sarevok, for once, understand that everything isn't the Muslims' fault.
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 3:30am
We could always convert to Muslim and celebrate our 'li2hfew;lizxcojkfw@#%$dytdsf or what ever they call itLOL!
I'd forgotten how amusing a dose of small-minded bigotry could be.
[ This and the previous post were perfect candidates for PMs. ] - Beren
[ December 12, 2004, 10:03: Message edited by: Beren ]
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 8:38am
Having had time to think about this, why don't all the religious factions get together and celebrate ALL the holidays. Imagine, 8 days of presents for Hannukah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa. All those extra holidays that the boss has to pay time and a half for (or drinking days for those of that inclination)...
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 9:56am
I'm an athiest. As such, christmas doesnt mean anything to me, and I'm not a big fan of it anyway. However, I'm not gonna get all twisted out of shape because people want to celebrate the holiday. I'm well aware that the holiday itself has transcended it's original purpose anyway. To get all worked up about the name, or about people celebrating it is just stupid. If people complain about it, they're probably the same people who will complain if they see anyone smiling/ having fun/ being more interesting then they are.
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 12:46pm
Banning Christmas because there are poeple who don't celebrate it? Doesn't it make sense? i think the problem come from not paying attention to other religious holidays for the majority Christians in America. i am sure if other religious is treated equally with Christmas, no one will have a problem. But then US government has to over emphasize the seperation of church and government part thus damning ability to recognize all.
In Malaysian Constitution, the federation adopts Islam as its official religion. And so it seems that Malaysia is bound to be an intolerate, religiously selfish coutry by the presumption of ... some. But, in here, we have offficial holidays of Christmas for Christians, 2 days Chinese lunar new year for chinese, 2 days Fast breaking festival for Muslims, Deepavali for Indians, Harvest festival for Kadazan and Iban, Wesak day for buddhists. If we can celebrate them all, we can recognize them all. If we can officially recognize them all, we can respect them all.
Sun, 12th Dec '04, 1:10pm
Sounds like a great system Teekc. I can certainly understand the point you are making, and agree with it myself. The problem perhaps is that christian holidays in the US, and UK etc like christmas are so ingrained, that for many the idea of adding other religeous holidays would be seen as unnacceptable. Better to remove them all then add cultural diversity. :rolleyes:
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 7:40am
Takara, wouldn't you like time and a half every chance you get? Why not recognize all those holidays and have your employer pay you big money for the ones you otherwise don't care about?
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 8:10am
Because then my employer would get pissy and downsize the workforce ;)
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 8:29am
Oh, yeah, I forgot about corporate greed...
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 9:38am
Well, over here we have numerous bank holkidays which mean bugger all. Some in April, may etc. It wouldnt be too hard to remove thse holidays, and move them to cover more diverse religeous holidays.
But that would mean recognising cultural diversity. Something conservative tradtitionalists just couldnt face. Afterall, these different groups have come to our country. They have to fall in line with us, right? The way they have to shape thir own countries after ours with our version of corrup.. I mean democracy.
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 10:58am
Takara, why don't you English start by actually celebrating your patron saint's day? The Irish have made a worldwide institution out of St Patrick's Day but the English let St George's Day pass by without so much as a toast.
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 12:36pm
I couldnt agree more HB. There have been some efforts to celebrate it made, but unfortunately I believe the problem stems from the late 70's and early 80's.
Football hooliganism was rife during this time, and wherever they went, the flag of St.George was synonymous with them. Racism, violence, all was conducted witrh that flag waving. Ever since it has become a symbol of racism and bigotry to many. As such, the day passes by now as it is seen as an embarressment.
The flag of St.George has become like the swastika. Neither mean anything bad in themselves, just that both were used by extreme groups and have become permenantly linked with them.
Times are slowly changing. The hey day of hooliganism and racism is fading. The past year or two has seen the resurgence of the flag of St.George as a symbol of national pride. Maybe in a few years St.George can once again be proudly commemerated. I hope so, but it will take time.
Aldeth the Foppish Idiot
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 4:50pm
@Takara - I really like your idea of giving up some holidays to recognize the diversity in the country by other religions.
In the U.S., I would gladly give up (in chronological order, not order of preference): Martin Luther King Jr. Day, President's Day, and Columbus Day without batting an eye. Already, that's three holidays that can be used for something else. There are a few I wouldn't part with though - like Thanksgiving, Memorial Day and Independence Day.
And as far as the government taking away holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas, I can guarantee that Christmas would go long before Thanksgiving, as Thanksgiving has very little religious meaning attached to it - it's a American holiday, not a Christian holiday.
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 5:51pm
I'm afraid I'm in two minds about "celebrating" St. George's day. Yes, he's the Patron saint of England, but being as he wasn't English, and probably never took step on English soil, I think I'd prefer celebration of something different and actually English.
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 5:53pm
Although the holidays of religious festivals are still going strong, the religions in themselves have very little cultural meaning anymore. It used to be that religion was so important that Catholics and Protestants would war and kill in the name of their religion. Now, we make war on a Muslim country not because it is Muslim but because it is a dictatorship.
The differences between religious sects seems to become less and less important over the years. I can honestly say I have no idea as to the religion of my closest friends- I've never thought to ask. Is this not living proof that our world is already becoming culturally diverse? On this note I can also say that there are very few words that people find inherently insulting any more, including swearwords and ancient insults. If you call someone a B*stard they very rarely even bat an eyelid, or at the most, retaliate verbally against that person.
Doesn't it sound ridiculous that these days you can hurl insults at people and they don't care, but if you use a word of religious preference in their presence they rally to have it espunged from society?
Just because it tickled me, a short quote from "Love actually"...
"There was more than one lobster present at the birth of Christ?"
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 7:08pm
We have a few that are superfluous here. May day bank holiday is a waste of time. August bank holiday (that's it's name), and a couple of others. All these can be removed and changed to cover things like Hannakah, end of Ramadam, things like that. Not only would it perhaps make people aware of, and celebrate other religions festivals, but it might help reduce some of that fear factor that people have with other faiths.
In the current climate of terrorism and fundamentalism, broadening horizons, and increasing awareness of other perspectives in the world can only be a good thing IMO.
[ December 13, 2004, 19:18: Message edited by: Takara ]
Mon, 13th Dec '04, 8:12pm
The other big thing to bear in mind with all these 'public' holidays is that so many people don't even get the day off on those days any more anyway. So many shops and restaurants etc seem to be open on public holidays that it probably doesn't matter what becomes designated as a statutory holiday any more.
With this in mind, if certain days of the year become more popular than others, then they could become psuedo-holidays for those that want them. For example, I know several people who take a day off on St Patrick's Day because they like the idea of drinking all day, but it is unlikely that it would ever be declared a national holiday. Also, plenty of Chinese people take the day off on Chinese New Year. So we can have a situation where all sorts of culturally diverse days are celebrated without having to officially sanction them (or offend others by sanctioning some and not others). Providing an official government decreed holiday for things like Ramadan or Hannukah would probably cause more problems than it would solve.
Wed, 15th Dec '04, 4:30am
Man, I HATE this PC sterilisation of Christmas. I'm hardly a devout Christian (in fact, I have a problem with any organised religion, but that's a different topic), but Christmas is now so throughly secularised in Australia that it needs no strong link to Christianity to be celebrated. Just enjoy it for what it is to you - if it means something different to someone else, great, fine, let them do whatever they want. Me having a Christmas party isn't going to somehow destroy any non-Christians in the room, and I wouldn't care if it was a Kwanzaa party, a Chanukah party, a Solstice party, whatever - the important thing is the spirit of the occasion.
Of course, try telling some people that. Proof to me that there is no monopoly on intolerance, and that common sense really isn't.
I passed up shopping at a store cause they had Merry Xmas on the door. For pete's sake if you can put angels and such in the window you can surely take the time to Write out Merry Christmas @ DHB: Well, they might be Futurama fans...
Wed, 15th Dec '04, 7:39am
I agree with Takara:
In the current climate of terrorism and fundamentalism, broadening horizons, and increasing awareness of other perspectives in the world can only be a good thing IMO.
As long as these perspectives don't directly conflict, both gain from jointing together to celebrate eachothers traditions. I don't expect a religeon that forbids alcohol (Mormon, Muslim) to go out and get drunk on St. Patricks day, but if there are traditinal foods for a particular holiday, then sharing who we are can only add to the richness of the nation that hosts these cultures.
Tap Dancing Oyster
Wed, 22nd Dec '04, 12:39pm
I don't agree I'm afraid.
In England - not Britain we seem to have lost our sense of national identity. At the moment it seems to be a confused mixture of conflicting ideas.
There is strong tradition and pride associated with Scotland, Wales and Ireland but not in England. I really don't think changing public holidays for these reasons is going to help anything or anybody at this point.
Wed, 22nd Dec '04, 11:19pm
In England - not Britain we seem to have lost our sense of national identity.Yeah and that ain't coming back, you know who you have to thank for that.
There is strong tradition and pride associated with Scotland, Wales and Ireland but not in England.That is because Scotland, Wales and Ireland lacks something England has a lot of!
Fri, 24th Dec '04, 9:53pm
This is mental. it's like the national census done in Britain a while ago. For those who don't know, it was done to see who the British people were. One of the questions asked you to tick the box representing the nationality. One of the boxes was labeled 'Jedi'. I want a jedi holiday!
I demand a day off to celebrate 'Happy Darth Death day'!
Mon, 27th Dec '04, 9:24pm
Bah...I've been celebrating Christmas with all my Christian friends since kindergarten, and I'm Muslim so... :rolleyes:
This is crazy...atleast in India people aren't banning Christmas.
Mon, 27th Dec '04, 10:25pm
quote:In England - not Britain we seem to have lost our sense of national identity.
Yeah and that ain't coming back, you know who you have to thank for that.
quote:There is strong tradition and pride associated with Scotland, Wales and Ireland but not in England.
That is because Scotland, Wales and Ireland lacks something England has a lot of!What? You can't mean racists, because they are everywhere, not just in England.
Mon, 27th Dec '04, 11:22pm
You're right, I can't mean racists. You've got the wrong end of the stick.
Tue, 28th Dec '04, 1:33am
Oh, I guess you missed my not-so-subtle hint then.
Tue, 28th Dec '04, 2:29am
Yes, I guess I missed your not-so-subtle hint.
Fri, 31st Dec '04, 10:37pm
I am a Christian (if you couldn't tell by my name) but in reality, it's our Holiday. I don't mind non-christians celebrating it, they can go ahead. I really don't mind. What I do mind is them trying to stop us from celebrating it the way we want to. *Christ*mas. It's about the birth of Christ. I don't care if you don't celebrate it for that reason but at least let us celebrate it for the reason it exists.
I swear I'm moving to Canada if this keeps up... if people feel "left out" of christmas, then they should become Christians! Not that that's an up and done thing, but come on, if you feel left out, you obviously shouldn't be celebrating it.
You can celebrate it how you want, fine with me, but don't screw it up for the rest of us.... Blech, darn government.
Fri, 31st Dec '04, 11:33pm
In the USA Christmas is not a legal holiday. Originally it was a religious holy day. Christ wasn't born in December. There are Christians who do not celebrate Christmas.
However-IMO to ban Christmas because some people are offended by it is (to be polite) stupid!
Personally I am offended by a lot of things at Christmas. I spend a quiet time with family and friends.
Would the world be a better place without Christmas? I don't think so.
I agree with HB. If you don't want to do something just don't do it.
Aha, let's do away with Mother's Day. Oh, that's always on a Sunday so most business are closed.
Sat, 1st Jan '05, 1:21pm
Godrules44, Christmas is not a christian holiday, a feast has been celebrated around the winter solstice throughout recorded history. The early church thought that instead of ereasing the old pagan celebrities it thought it would be much better to just replace them with christian ones at the same time. Thus people could keep his old traditions and at the same adopt the new christian noes. Here in Sweden christmas is still called jul/yule, the old pagan name of the midwinter celebrations.
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 2:30pm
Why not get rid of Sunday also? We should only have a six day week because non-christians could obviously be offended by the fact that the entire 7 day week system is based on Creation. :rolleyes:
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 5:53pm
I doubt it is, seeing as none of the weekdays have christian names in any of the germanic languages. Pagan through and through, Moon day, Tyr day, Odin day, Thor day, Freja Day, not sure about Saturday in English but in Swedish it is lördag which roughly means "washing day" iirc and then Sun day. Not very christian is it? The sabbath is on different days in the various religions based upon the old testament as well.
If I am not completely mistaken the seven day week is based upon the moon or somesuch and have nothing to do with any of the modern semitic religions.
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 6:00pm
IIRC Babylonians had seven-day week and each one of the seven days was representing a deity.
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 6:35pm
I believe Saturday is Saturn's Day. The seven day week has nothing to do with Christianity. The last time I looked the 'Old Testament' was jewish. God took seven 'days' to create the world. Maybe the ancient Jews got the seven day week from the Babylonians when they were in exile. I think that is were the idea of Satan originated.
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 7:15pm
no jews got the 7 day week from OT it took God 6 days for creation 7th day he rested creating the jewish 7 day week. Satan actually means advisary/enemy (hebrew) and the first time it was used was in the OT in the book of numbers and actually refers to God being an enemy of Balaam. This is before captivity in Babylon. The idea of satan being a goat-person goes back to OT days of Moses also before captivity.
Yes many things in our culture come from pagan ideas and some from christian the problem is forbidding christians from displaying anything during their holiday. To prevent other religions in america from displaying their's is hateful but to accept anything christian during christmas is also considered wrong... and if you think christmas started out pagan look to middle eastern or african history just a couple of hundred years after J'shua's birth it was being celebrated, but not exactly like we do now.
Sun, 2nd Jan '05, 7:33pm
Well, the celebration of christmas is a fairly recent christian thing, if I am not mistaken it didnt really start until almost 1000 years after the birth of Jesus as a way to push out out the pagan midwinter feasts and have only been the big christian thing for merely a century or two. Easter has always been the biggest christian holiday and still is if you look at it from a purely religious perspective.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 3:54am
Yet easter is celebrated by non-christians also - especially the female choc-a-holics.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 9:15am
Please, stick to the topic.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 11:55am
Christmas has many origins which I will detail below. It is safe to say that Christmas is definately not a Christian holiday so no offense can/should be taken.
. It is an appropriation by early Christians of a day on which the birth of several pagan gods, Osiris, Jupiter, and Plutus, or the ancient deified leader Nimrod, was celebrated.
2. It is an appropriation of the pagan Midwinter festivals, such as the Germanic Yule and the Roman festival of the birth of Unconquered Sun, celebrated on the day after the winter solstice, or the Roman festival of Saturnalia.
Santa Clause is just a horribly mispronounced version of the Dutch word Sinterklaas which means Saint Nicholas so maybe the holiday should be called 'Coke Day' (that should please all those PC extremists) which I will explain below:
Santa was born in march 1930, designed as the Christmas season mascot of coca cola. the whole fatman in red with black snowboots was a creation of a Jewish artist called Hoffman. How ironic.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 5:06pm
The christmas tree is not christian. It came from Germany and is a recent addition to the Holidays. Everygreens as decoration date way back before christianity. Wasn't anything else in northern Europe to brighten up the winter. Smelled nice too.
Actually IMO the only people who should find 'Christmas' offensive are dedicated Christians.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 5:29pm
Different variants of "Santa Claus" have existed since before 1930 but that was when the modern one was introduced. Here in the north we had "tomtar" which is best translated into goblins, elves or somesuch. Small humanoid creatures who lived in the farms and helped out if you kept them happy. The only thing you really had to do to keep these creatures happy was to put out a bowl of porridge on christmas eve for it to eat, in the anglican world I reckon the milk and cookie has replaced the porridge while here we eat the porridge ourselves instead. If you didnt keep the little goblin happy it would wreak havoc on your farm. The gifts were handed out by a man dressed as a goat just 100+ years ago hereabout and that creature wasnt the pleasant jolly being that Santa Claus is. This goat creature was based on Pan from the Greek mythology but with the entrance of christianity it got strains from the devil as well. All this is said from memory so I am sure there are plenty and plenty of mistakes here.
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 6:47pm
Christmas tree is neither pagan or christian so essentially you can use it for both...
if you go back to the original settlements of man decorating bushes and trees was always around including streamers or decorations hung around the houses (if you can call them that). People did stuff like this atleast from what I can find in history bookds around 3000bc. Just because europeans did this before christmas for other religions doesn't mean its pagan, because everybody did this in ancient times for religious and non religious joyous occassions. It was done because they decorated on limited technology and resources.
Aldeth the Foppish Idiot
Mon, 3rd Jan '05, 7:50pm
Slightly off topic, but to answer a previous question, the days of the week were originally named for the seven known celestial bodies in the solar system, in thier thought-to-be order of increasing distance to the earth. The sun was thought to be the closest (ergo Sunday was the first day) followed by the moon (ergo Monday was second). The names have been bastardized since then, and the only one that remains someone close to it's actual meaning is the last day of the week - Saturday - named after the furthest known celestial body, Saturn.
Master of Nuhn
Tue, 4th Jan '05, 4:56pm
I'd rather see people enrich themselves with some more knowledge about several cultural happenings etc, then loosing them.
If you celebrate Christmas, then I'd be glad if you can tell me what it was and what it became.
Same for Chanuka, Easter, St.Nicholas-eve, St.Patricksday etc.
I love Easter (Pasen in Dutch), so I can tell you something about it if you like. But I have little to do with Haloween, and so I know little about it. There are thousands of people who celebrate Christmas, but have no idea what it is all about. I don't say that these people shouldn't celebrate Christmas. Not at all. Invite your friends and family, buy presents and have a good meal. Nothing wrong with it. But I'd like to ask these people to learn a bit more about what Christmas really is.
Perhaps when I learn a bit more about Chanuka, I'll celebrate this too with whoever wants to.
And about the days of the week: Everybody should know that. You learn that at school.
Aldeth: The 7 days of the week are named after the sun and the moon and 5 German deities: Tyr, Wodan, Thor(or Donar), Frya and Satur.
But this also depends on where you live, I guess, since the southern european countries may have different names for their days then western europe. Mercurius is indeed a planet, just like saturnus. But these planets are named after gods, too.
"Oh, who am I trying to fool? I'm bored out of my skull"
[ January 04, 2005, 17:09: Message edited by: Master of Nuhn ]
Tue, 4th Jan '05, 5:12pm
Trying not to change the topic its terrible what happened to St Patricks day in the US, it makes me cringe with its tackiness. Most people don't know anything about him or even where he is buried.
Back on topic yes its great to learn the different aspects of Christmas, not just what coke came up with.
Joacqin I know that 'santas' appeared before 1930's, many cultures have their own versions. I just think its a shame that ancient holidays can become commercial shopping days.
Tue, 4th Jan '05, 5:39pm
Santa was pre-1930's, but generally decked out in Green. The jolly man in a red suit and white beard was the change Coca-cola made.
Wed, 5th Jan '05, 9:06am
thats what I said earlier...
'Yule' is represented by a sunwheel (swastika) which is the symbol of the sun. Yule (Christmas after Christianity) is a feast for the sun. Germanic, Celtic and Ugric tribes thought that everything begins from darkness and Yule is celebrated on the darkest time of year, midwinter. It is a new beginning, morning of the world.
[ January 05, 2005, 10:30: Message edited by: Cesard ]
Wed, 5th Jan '05, 7:17pm
but you know this topic was created for the opinions of banning christmas, and I think we're talking about the USA. If not disregard.
I probably will anger a few people with this, but the problem is in the US they take all christian meaning out of christmas based on separation of church and state. This statement is not in the constitution it was coined by Thomas Jefferson to explain to people how the government could not establish its own religion (i explain religion later) by forcing people to worship god in any specific way like the catholics did in europe. If you read US constitution, speeches from founding fathers, how the Supreme court interpreted laws, and many historical documents of the founding fathers of the US... freedom of religion meant freedom of denomination. Christianity is the basis of the original US government, there was even a law that forbid saying "god dammit" by the Supreme court. It claimed that since the US constitution was 90% based on the Bible that saying anything against the God of the Bible is treason. So should we ban christmas based on todays interpretation... I don't know but why has it changed so much in the US?
Thu, 6th Jan '05, 1:45am
Because quite a few people, albeit less in the US than many other places, have tossed off the superstitiouns of the past.
Thu, 6th Jan '05, 3:37am
They are trying to not offend people by getting rid of the word Christmas, and in the process of doing so they are offending everyone else! It's maddening how f-ing dumb some people can get.