I find myself laughing and simultaneously grinding my teeth over all the hubbub about holiday political correctness. Was it right or wrong for Starbucks to change their cups during the year-end holidays? Is it right or wrong that I just called it “holidays” instead of Christmas? Who the bleep cares?
Seriously we are spending too much time worrying about hurting people’s feelings. I’m not saying let’s go back to the blatant racism and sexism of the 60’s, but I don’t really think that most reasonable adults, whether Jewish or Atheist, care if we call it Christmas. Likewise, I think stewardess is NOT an offensive title, and I really think it’s down right silly to label any Americans by a country-first title (i.e., African-American, Japanese-American). With this line of thinking would I be a Persian-American AND a Russian-American? After all, my Father was born in Iran, and I am first generation American born, while my Mother’s parents were all born in Russia, making me second generation American.
I know my soapbox issue today has nothing to do with fitness, except to say that if any of your day is spent worrying about how to address someone or if you said Merry Christmas when you should have said Happy Holidays, then it does add to your stress and you know I’m always addressing stress. Stress is the worst assaulter of your health and fitness.
Christmas is for most of us (even those who are Christian) a holiday that celebrates family, gift giving, feast partaking and song. It has little to do these days with Christ for most of the United States. I say that not to offend anyone of you who closely tie Christmas to the birth of Jesus. I simply say it because like it or not, America is a capitalistic society and Christmas (Easter too) has been transformed into a commercial vehicle. Fortunately many of us still hold firm to the warmth and universal love of the season and therefore it remains a generally positive holiday.
I see no reason to not call it Christmas. Conversely I think Fox News should lay off the “war on Christmas” accusations because Starbucks chose to not “offend” its Jewish, Muslim, and Atheist customers. Even if the cups wouldn’t have offended anyone, it’s their right to make that call, and they’re not pooping on Christmas!
I rant today knowing full well that on my Christmas Cards for the last several years I’ve chosen to say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas (or as I like to say Happy Kringle – paying homage to early Christmas Beatles recordings). However, I do so not because I’m trying to be politically correct, but because I’m attempting to encompass all the December holidays: Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanza, and New Years.
So from now on, don’t think twice to say Merry Christmas if that’s what you like to say, and don’t worry if you describe someone as White, Black or Asian. Better to focus on being polite and considerate to everyone you meet rather than fretting that you’ve offended a group using a long-standing non-offensive term.