Saturday, November 17, 2012

Merry Holidays!

We are heading into the holiday season. Notice I didn't say Christmas. In America, everything is holiday this and season's greetings that. Christmas, Hanukkah...seldom mentioned by name.

It isn't like this everywhere. Despite being very politically correct, and probably even more totalitarian in its enforcement of PC dogma (at least for now) than the US, in the UK (still a pretty close relative of the US) people still say Christmas. Go to a UK restaurant website this time of year and you will see advertisements saying, "Book your Christmas dinner now."

This is even true in London; probably the most multicultural city in the world.

Is this because UK residents are more religious than Americans? No. In fact, the opposite is true. Regardless of which survey you view, the UK is always ranked as being more secular or atheistic than the United States.

I wonder if these two trends might be related. Perhaps because in the UK it is assumed that few people truly believe in God or G-d, the word Christ doesn't cause so much discomfort. In the US, where a lot people really, really believe, there seems to be a fear that any allowance of Christ into the conversation is a slippery slope on the road to theocracy.

Once the divine component shrinks into the background, Christmas becomes just another generic good will holiday. Maybe the "War on Christmas" will fade when Americans stop believing in Christ.

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