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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

celebrate christmas, or else!

That is the title of this piece today by Lew Rockwell, where he takes on the evangelical notion that we must take a stand against the "War on Christmas". He makes a number of excellent points, and reveals some of the absurdities of the evangelical crowd, including their double standard regarding iconoclasm:
The evidence that kicked off this hysteria was the annual urban myth that the Post Office is not going to issue its Madonna and Child stamp, which turns out to be right here. Actually, the whole thing is rather odd, given the history of iconoclasm integral to this religious tradition. Why are icons effectively banned year-round in their churches and homes, but somehow mandatory for stamps at Christmas time?
...and their mortal fear of anything that might "commercialize Christmas":
Then the warriors started targeting companies like Target and Macy’s for failing to say "Christmas" in its advertising slogans. Never mind that Macy’s offers 301 products on sale that are promoted as Christmas items including a sterling silver cross ornament for $60, and an ornament with Jesus and Mary for $43 (now $29!). A look at Target shows the same thing (39,185 matches for Christmas).

Rather than waging boycotts, they might do well to demonstrate to these companies their commitment to Christmas by buying their openly religious items for sale. But wait! That would be "commercializing Christmas," which this crowd also considers to be a grave evil. In fact, to the extent that companies have started using more broadly ecumenical promotion strategies, perhaps it might have something to do with the endless haranguing against commercializing that goes on in pulpits every year...


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