It's hard to believe that there are companies and individuals who want to ban "Merry Christmas" and replace it with "Holiday Greetings" because, they say, they don't want to offend anyone.Yes, because it would be so easy to get confused. I had an argument about this with a friend one time. She was/still is I assume an uberChristian, and swore up and down that they, the great conspiratorial they, wanted to Paganize the holiday. Mostly she, and the AFA, were/are referring to the retail sector, where, you know, displays like this just scream Yule, or Hanukkah, or Diwali.
I had to point out to her that they weren't trying to Paganize Christmas, being a devote Pagan at the time. I had yet to walk into a store and hear someone wish me a "Good Yule!" or a "Happy Hanukkah" or "Have a fun Diwali" or whatever. They were trying to commercialize and secularize the holiday season. Which might be egregious, but is not the same thing.
So with that red herring dropped, we come to the next line of the AFA press release:
Christians can take a stand and proclaim to our communities that Christmas is not just a winter holiday focused on materialism, but a "holy day" when we celebrate the birth of our Savior. We can do it in a gentle and effective way by wearing the “It’s OK to say Merry Christmas" button.I agree that the focus shouldn't be on materialism, but does it being a "holy day" mean that the rest of us can't celebrate it too? Just hogging all the traditions and festivities for yourself, hm?
I hearby suggest that all my readers, of any non-Catholic/Christian persuasion use the appropriate greeting for the holiday. Happy Haunkkah, Good Yule, what have you. The holiday season is for everyone, the AFA and it's followers need to know that it's our country too. They have to share.
Now, as for those of us who are of the Humanist/Atheist/Agnostic persuasion, what are we supposed to do? I give you....
What is Krismas?(From the Krismas Wiki here)
Krismas is a secular holiday that celebrates the myth of Kris Kringle, commonly known as Santa Claus. It happens on December 25th of each year, and is also closely associated with Krismas Eve which occurs December 24th. Krismas is part of the "12 Days of Secular Celebration"
Krismas is about celebrating most of the modern mythologies surrounding Christmas, except for the mythology of the birth of Jesus as a savior.
Krismas is about giving gifts, especially those “from the heart”; it is about the magic of childhood; it is about peace on earth; and it is about goodwill towards humankind. It is about the universal truths of goodness that surround this time of year.
Who should celebrate Krismas?
Anyone who wishes to extract from Christmas all the traditions that they deem to be good, without needing to feel like they need to believe in the Jesus savior mythology might want to celebrate Krismas.
I suspect that many atheists, agnostics, neo-pagans, Buddhists, Hindus, or other non-Abraham followers may want to celebrate this holiday. Some Muslims and Jews may also wish to celebrate this holiday. There may even be a few “liberal” Christians who see the benefit of celebrating this holiday.
Why was the name "Krismas" chosen?
First and foremost, the name was chosen because it sounds nearly identical to Christmas. If someone had Trademarked the name “Christmas”, we’d probably be sued. But as far as we are aware, that name is in the public domain :-) The idea behind having a nearly identical name is that you can wish someone a Merry Krismas without needing to explain a whole new holiday, in fact the other person will probably just assume you said “Christmas”. So this holiday can blend into our current traditions very easily, without getting people who may not have the same beliefs as you all riled up. But you still don’t have to accept the part about Jesus being a savior, or even the existence of Jesus if you so choose.
Problem, solved! Keep wishing everyone a Merry
I even give you a button:
Which should be linked to http://www.krismas.org Not the best button, perhaps, but it will do for now. And if you want to get away from the commercialization of Krismas, I suggest handmade/homemade gifts and decorations.
So, remember, as we ramp up to the holiday season, you share this country with people of all faiths. That means sharing the season too.