• author
    • Gary Huerta

    • December 18, 2014 in Columnists

    An open letter to all atheists waging war on Xmas

    Dear Atheists,

    I understand this is a particularly stressful time of year for you. Kenny G is pumped into every public place. Trees are decorated. Lights are twinkling. People are shopping. The air is filled with the smell of mint, chocolate and cinnamon. If there were an actual hell, this would most likely define it.

    As someone who does not believe in the vindictive, judgmental, prickish God of the Christian faith myself, I can understand the angst and loathing you feel from November through January. There really is no escaping all the “Merry Christmas” shit, is there?

    That said, I often wonder why it is that you become so aggressive in your anti-Christmas tactics. It seems every year there you express some outrage because the president has a Christmas tree or protest some city wanting to put up a nativity scene. Seriously, who cares?

    Does it really compromise your disbelief in God if a huge part of the population wants to call this time of year Christmas? Do yourselves a favor. Make your lives easy. Take a cue from the nihilists and blow the whole affair off.

    Consider this – your insistence that Christmas not be celebrated is no different than others insisting it should be celebrated. Both sides are trying to inflict their wills on one another. So who is right?

    The most logical answer is…neither.

    But here’s the difference. You atheists are fighting a war you cannot win. Think about it. Do you think protesting the public display of a nativity scene or protesting the use of the word “Christmas” is going to affect change? Dream on.

    For believers, Christmas is a holy day perpetuating the notion their actions here on Earth are subject to examination by some higher authority. But they aren’t the only ones celebrating. To a huge contingency of others, Christmas merely signifies the time of year when we buy needless items, overdecorate mantles, and guzzle bourbon laced eggnog with friends and family. It’s tantamount to a description of an event, much like Kleenex is a common term for tissue.

    Is it really worth arguing about? Personally, I don’t see the point. I have no ties to the Christian world except for my love of Jesus juice, yet I celebrate Christmas and use the word liberally at every turn. I use it to describe the tree I ritualistically put in my house and the lights I drape on the shrubs outside. I celebrate the Eve and open gifts on the Day. But it doesn’t mean I worship a Christian God. Or that I subscribe to the notion that everything was created in seven days. All it means is I believe in sharing a little good will toward my friends and loved ones in a manner that is familiar to most of the civilized western world, at a time where others are doing the same. Why is that so offensive to your one-and-done rationale for existence?

    To that end, many of my friends who are Jews even celebrate Christmas in some form or another. Even Neil Diamond cut a Christmas album and he’s about the biggest non-Christian in the entertainment industry.

    While I can’t speak for Jews, I suspect their participation is not a rejection of their own faith, but most likely a desire to be included in the fun and festivities everyone else is celebrating. There’s nothing wrong with that, is there? Do you atheists have some kind of fundamental problem with people wanting to offer tokens of affection – or, dare I say, “Christmas” presents?

    Like I said, I get that the whole red and green festooned season is shoved down your throat. But atheists are not being picked on or singled out, so deal with it. Frankly, it’s shoved down everyone’s throats. By the time New Years rolls around, even the most devout religious fanatics are happy to put their decorations in storage for another year. Overdose is just part of the deal. You pig out on Christmas and then spend the next 11 months in Yuletide detox.

    Of course, if you do realize waging war on Christmas is a futile effort and you are doing it with no other intention than to raise the ire of Christians, then please disregard all of the above and continue with your diabolical plan! Because there really is nothing funnier than seeing Christians come unglued at the notion of having to refer to their beloved tree without the word “Christmas” in the name. No one does righteous indignation like a Christian in full-blown defense of their most precious holiday. And watching them turn beet red, go ballistic and rant and rave at the notion of having someone tell them it’s more politically correct to say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”?

    Well that’s pure Genius!

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