There is No War on Christmas

Written by Lillian Tate, Reporter

  With the holiday season rapidly approaching, it’s important to have some respect for the people who celebrate differently. Not everyone will celebrate Christmas this year, so it’s important to make an effort to normalize saying “happy holidays” rather than “merry Christmas.” 

  There are fourteen religious holidays in December. According to Associated Press National Opinion Research Center 92% of Americans will celebrate Christmas, 5% will celebrate Hanukkah, 3% will celebrate Kwanzaa and 5% will celebrate more than one holiday. Keep in mind as well that many people will celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday whereas many others will celebrate it without a religious association. 

  The problem many people have with “happy holidays” is that they’ve associated the term with politics and a competition to be more ‘politically woke,’ but this is not the case. There is no political debate with the two sayings. Saying “happy holidays” does not translate to “happy holidays to every holiday except Christmas.”

  No one is actively trying to erase Christmas. “Happy holidays” is a term of respect used in order to be more inclusive. 

  Place yourself in the shoes of someone who celebrates Hanukkah. Imagine you’ve said “happy holidays” to someone and they spit back, “actually, it’s merry Christmas.” How disrespected would you feel? Just like that, your beliefs have been completely disregarded. 

  Many American citizens do, however, feel as though “happy holidays” is an attack on their Christian holiday. In 2015, Dennis Prager of National Review wrote “Of course it’s a war on Christianity — or, more precisely, a war on the religious nature of America,” Prager has declared that this saying is an active fight against Christmas. Prager is not alone in this feeling, CNN anchor Rolan Martin wrote “This whole push to remove Christ from the Christmas season has gotten so ridiculous that it’s pathetic,” in 2007.

  Some people who celebrate Christmas think they are the only people in the world and completely forget the diversity around them. This causes people to think that any direction toward including minorities means erasing the majority. This is ridiculous and selfish.

  When holiday shopping, take a second to realize how few decorations there are to celebrate Kwanzaa or Hanukkah. America already exaggerates its love for Christmas with the overwhelming decorations, while seemingly ignoring the holidays celebrated by others.

  Start practicing now as the holiday season dawns on us, and make someone’s day with this tiny display of respect.