One of the very cool aspects of writing here is getting comments from people like you. I really enjoy your feedback, even from those who disagree. Such comments cause me to really search within myself to the core of my beliefs. It’s not enough to just say “this is what I believe”, but to offer reasoning for my beliefs.
One such comment was to my post from last Wednesday from another individual identified as “Anonymous”:
“I agree that it is a widely celebrated holiday and nationally recognized, and as a catholic I agree that it’s a shame people now feel that they have to sidestep even those things our society is built on because one or two of the minority will act out like they’re being rubbed the wrong way. I do, however, disagree with your last statement. I think that everyone should be free to believe in whatever religious ideas or gods their religion encompasses. So while I agree we should keep the generous, loving, giving ideals of Christ and the celebration of his birth in Christmas I would ask that no one tries to push these on atheists, Jews, Buddhists, Islamics, and everyone else with varying views. We’re all entitled to what we believe in =)”
Unfortunately, I’m not sure to which “last statement” she is referring. The premise of the post was that if the meaning of Christmas offends you, don’t observe it and work it like any other day. In reviewing the post, I am unable to locate anything which suggests people of other faiths should not be “free to believe” whatever they believe. While I don’t subscribe to “pushing” my faith on anyone who disagrees, I also don’t respect others pushing me to hide it.
Like it or not, believe it or not, Christmas is an observance of the birth of Jesus Christ. If you do not believe in Jesus, either don’t observe the day, or take the day off and enjoy it. But don’t “push” your views on me and those like me who consider this observance as sacred. Nobody has created a whimsical mascot to distract from the meaning of Hanukkah. No one has come up with an alternate name for it to whitewash it’s religious identity. No one has touched Kwanzaa. Nobody dares to touch Ramadan. But Christmas?
Christians have become easy targets. If we don’t “turn the other cheek”, we’re hypocrites. If we stand up and protest to defend our beliefs, we’re bigoted extremists. If we practice biblical correctness over political correctness, we’re intolerant. Isn’t it ironic that we’re considered intolerant when anytime a public figure states they believe in the biblical definition of marriage, those who disagree stop at nothing to destroy their lives and reputations?
I agree that in America, we’re “free to believe” whatever we believe. You’re free to wear a tin foil hat so aliens and secret agents in black helicopters can’t read your thoughts. You’re free to worship a hand carved image of a smiling fat guy. You’re apparently free to contact terrorist groups and leaders while serving as an officer in the United States Armed Forces. I’m concerned that this same freedom is being taken away, piece by piece, from Christians. It’s just a matter of time when they discover that even the word “holiday” has religious origins. Hello? Holiday. Holy Day. Coincidence? Look it up yourself.
Despite this faux pas by those who wish to see Christmas obliterated from our consciousness, they won’t stop at Photoshopping Christ out of Christmas. Look for “In God We Trust” to be removed from our currency. It won’t be long before “One Nation Under God” is in the crosshairs. These elements have already received some attention by those who want to secularize our country, but nothing like what we will see in the near future.
More and more, our country is becoming like our friend “Anonymous” who, while professing to be Catholic, lacks the conviction and passion of her faith. Instead of standing up against the methodical demolition of the Christian foundation upon which this country was founded, she has bought into the idea that other faiths, and those who practice them, have somehow been victimized by Christianity. And as an enlightened, tolerant person, secularizing one of two most Holy Days recognized by her church seems fair to those who don’t believe in the divinity of Christ. By doing so, she has opened the door wide open to those who want to strip God from everything in America.
Are we free to believe? Really?