...I'm not hostile to Christmas.
OK, I'm a little hostile to Christmas music, but we'll get to that in a bit.
I'm definitely hostile to ChristmasCorp.
You know, the Christmas machine that starts putting up decorations before the Thanksgiving Turkey is leftovers? Oops, did I say leftovers? I meant slaughtered. The day after Halloween is a bit early (I'm not kidding, I saw it).
The Christmas machine that insists that the same 2-dozen Christmas songs need to be playing 24x7 as soon as the decorations go up. I've got over 6000 songs on my iPod set for random shuffle with no repeats (and I mean no repeats until it gets to the end of the list after a few weeks). Hearing a whole CD of different covers of I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus while I try to eat lunch is a bit irritating (I'm not kidding, I heard it). Have a bit of creativity in programming your Christmas Carols.
The Christmas machine for whom Thanksgiving is just a bookend for a month of retail madness and prayers that your store will finally, after 11 months of losing money, move into the black. There's something wrong with that business model.
I'm also hostile to the "War on Christmas" warriors, whether they're Henry Ford, the John Birch Society (no, I couldn't find the actual text of "There Goes Christmas?!" or other pamphlets where the JBS blamed the "War on Christmas" on Godless Communists and the UN) or the current crop of Fox News demagogues.
I think I may have found the truth of where red-state conservatives are seeing the "War on Christmas" though. It's not pagans, secularists, Jews or the ACLU.
I think Michelle Goldberg of Salon has it right:
In fact, there is no war on Christmas. What there is, rather, is a burgeoning myth of a war on Christmas, assembled out of old reactionary tropes, urban legends, exaggerated anecdotes and increasingly organized hostility to the American Civil Liberties Union. It's a myth that can be self-fulfilling, as school board members and local politicians believe the false conservative claim that they can't celebrate Christmas without getting sued by the ACLU and thus jettison beloved traditions, enraging citizens and perpetuating a potent culture-war meme. This in turn furthers the myth of an anti-Christmas conspiracy.
It's a feedback loop, and nobody but the "War on Christmas" warriors and scared middle-America public officials who believe them need be involved.
I've got my Christmas tree up at home in the bluest area of a blue shoreline (and the land of the Willow Glen "stepford trees"). I've got my Christmas stocking up at work, in a very blue department of a very blue public institution in a blue-governed state (Arnie finally learned that he couldn't govern without the support of a heavily liberal democratic legislature). I'll play my Ru Paul Christmas carols album tomorrow while I finish packing up my office (I always do that the day before my Christmas break starts). The next time someone tries to tell you there's a "War on Christmas" ask them why there's so much Christmas in the sinful, liberal San Francisco Bay Area.