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War On Christmas
Just a paragraph in one of his Random Thoughts columns.
The annual outbursts of intolerance toward any display of traditional Christmas scenes, or even daring to call a Christmas tree by its name, show that today's liberals are by no means liberal. Behind the mist of their lofty words, the totalitarian mindset shows throug
War On Christmas Competition: A Reader Reports A Festivus Pole In Florida, Carefully Placed Next To The Manger
From: An Anonymous Floridian [Email her]
Hello and MERRY CHRISTMAS to my friends at VDare.com!
Below is my entry into "the most outrageous attempt to abolish Christmas in 2012" sweepstakes.
The War Against Christmas is one of my favorite topics. Reporting on it has got me, at least as of this writing, one of my few mentions in Wikipedia (right up there with Fox’s Bill O’Reilly—wow!). More important, daring to discuss what VDARE.com sometimes calls the "Khristmaskampf" —after the Kulturkampf, Bismarck's drive to eliminate Catholic influence in the German Empire—gets the American Left really M-A-D.
And probably for the same reason: both the resistance to the Khristmaskampf, and also Palin’s wasted but extraordinary moment of popular fame, are in some sense symptomatic of the historic American nation’s inchoate struggle against its progressive dispossession.
I watch Google news alerts on the War Against/On Christmas all year. Very few days go by without some Main Stream Media fool fulminating furiously that
- the War on Christmas doesn’t exist!!! (we call this War On Christmas Denial); and
- anyway, it’s necessary because of the need for “inclusion”
These are obviously the current, absurdly contradictory, talking points issued by whatever took the place of Journolist, the notorious secret ListServ group for Leftist MSM journalists.
This MSM fury is particularly notable because it’s rarely triggered by anything specific: there is now strikingly little actual MSM reporting of the Khristmaskampf atrocities, and what little there is remains local. (Which is a reversion to the pre-2000 phase of the War—see below).
This repression, of course, is the pattern perfected by MSM news managers for handling black crime. Perhaps significantly, the one MSM outlet that regularly breaks the embargo and reports on black crime—the London-based Daily Mail—has also been one of the best MSM sources of stories from the Christmas battlefront.
But this year, alas, the Daily Mail seems to have fallen silent: all we have found recently was Parents declare war on Christmas by branding caroling at school a form of bullying (by Leslie Larson, December 18 2012), a prototypical story from Montana of what seems to be just one Christophobic parent demanding that the majority adjust to the minority.
As far as I can see, apart from the special (and much exaggerated) case of Fox’s Bill O’Reilly, there have been absolutely no national MSM defenses of Christmas this year. (In contrast to 2004—again, see below).
But, although they can no longer count on publicity, there are now several organizations defending Christmas. VDARE lists them here in our collegial way (let’s see if they link back!):
- Liberty Institute takes up religious liberty causes, including defense of Christmas rights, for example here.
- The Thomas More Society a group of Catholic lawyers who sponsor crèches as well the defense of Christmas
- The Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights frequently defends Christmas
- The Rutherford Institute, defends religious liberty in schools. Its The Twelve Rules of Christmas—which perhaps should be called “ The Twelve Rulings of Christmas”—delineates the rights that schoolchildren actually have under various court rulings in cases that should never have had to be brought in the first place.
- The Foundation for Individual Rights In Education (FIRE), whose Robert Sibley wrote recently that
I’m not a big believer in the “war on Christmas” rhetoric…But every so often in my work…I see an example of seasonal political correctness so ridiculous that it makes me want to put my head down on my desk. Such is the case at Western Piedmont Community College (WPCC) in North Carolina, where a Christmas tree sale fundraiser for a student group was unilaterally changed to a ‘holiday tree’ sale by campus administrators….
WPCC has therefore revealed itself to be another adherent of what I have called the “magic words” or “Lord Voldemort” school of censorship. In the massively popular Harry Potter books , most characters will not say the name of the main villain, “Lord Voldemort,” instead calling him “He-who-must-not-be-named.” Their worry is that if they say Voldemort’s name, they will magically attract his attention, with dire consequences.
College to student group: No selling Christmas trees, only ‘holiday’ trees, Daily Caller, November 28, 2012
(Links added by VDARE.com. WPCC was forced to retreat by a lawsuit threatened by the Alliance Defending Freedom. Note that, although this is a genuine Khristmaskampf atrocity and it happened this year, there was absolutely no national MSM pickup).
- The American Family Association has been campaigning against retailers trying to cash in on Christmas without either calling it that, or even allowing their employee to mention it. See its Naughty or Nice Christmas List 2012
God bless them, every one. (Any group that wants to be added to this list, let us know.)
In retrospect, it's now clear that the backlash against the War On Christmas was a precursor of 2009's Town Hall insurrections and 2010's Tea Parties, and before that intense public reaction that stopped the Bush Administration's Amnesty drives in 2006 and 2007. A more recent example: this summer’s Chick-fil-A eat-in.
All were spontaneous, grass-roots, leaderless-resistance movements that took the entire American elite, liberal and "conservative", entirely by surprise. (Ludicrously though the latter scrambled to catch up—and ignominiously though it failed to capitalize on these movements in the 2012 Presidential Election).
The root cause in all cases is the same: an American elite which is increasingly divergent, culturally and even ethnically, from the rest of the country.
This divergence has been long interesting to us here at VDARE.com. But, since the 2012 election, it seems to have finally made it into Main Stream debate. Usually it takes the form telling the GOP that it is “too white” (i.e. looks like 70% of the country), and even into public consciousness—hence the flaring interest in secession.
After the Democratic and Republican conventions last summer—during which the Democrats loudly booed a motion to insert a reference to God into their platform—I wrote that that the Republicans and Democrats in effect represent, of course imperfectly, two separate nations: America and Anti-America.
Similarly, after the 2012 presidential election, the blogger Larry Auster wrote ingeniously of America 2.0, which he argued had just displaced the Founders’ White Christian America 1.0; and of the need to salvage the historic American Nation to form what he calls America 3.0.
Simply put, the War On Christmas is a symptom of the struggle between these two Americas—as is anti-America’s periodic attempts to repress political debate as “hate speech” and, of course, its hysterical opposition to any suggestion of cutting the immigration which is steadily strengthening its hand.
Wikpedia currently dates my involvement in the Khristmaskampf to the “early 2000s.” But in fact I got John O’Sullivan, then Editor of National Review, to start a War Against Christmas Competition in 1995. (We called it “War Against Christmas”, but “War On Christmas” has obviously won out in popular usage, so I’ve adapted, with characteristic grace).
The last NR competition ran in 1997, at which time William F. Buckley for his own discreditable reasons had already fired O’Sullivan, but not yet leaked the disinformation that O’Sullivan was “resigning to write a book.” The War Against Christmas Competition was promptly dropped, along with the cause of immigration reform—not coincidentally. In 2000, NR itself actually published a “Holiday Edition.”
But VDARE.COM was launched on Christmas Eve 1999, and one of our first postings was Clinton HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo’s elimination of the word “Christmas” from HUD’s “Celebration of Holiday Traditions” party. In 2000, we re-started the War Against Christmas competition.
By an amazing coincidence, 2000 now seems to have been NR’s Nativity nadir. In 2001, Christmas reappeared at NR—if only, a VDARE.COM reader mordantly suggested, because Christians were now needed to fight a (real) war. In 2003, to our great amusement, NR’s Jay Nordlinger actually started a War Against Competition in his column. (This was the—rather weak—result). In 2004, however, he announced “I'm not going to go on any, or many, can't-say-‘Christmas’ tirades this year. That is my gift to you!” Just what we needed! And NRO’s Kathryn Ann Lopez similarly signaled surrender in 2006.
We haven’t found any original NR mention of the Khristmaskampf this year.
While I've been watching it, the Khristmaskampf has gone through eight distinct phases
1. Guerilla War 1990s-2000. During this period, there were almost no MSM stories about the War On Christmas and readers mostly supplied us with items that they'd seen with their own eyes—for example, Craig Nelsen's 2000 pic of the "Holiday Greeting Board" outside the Queens NY Main Post Office, from which one "greeting" was conspicuously missing. (Hint: it wasn't "Feliz Navidad".)
2. Gathering resistance, 2001-2003. As Americans became aware of what was being done to them, outbreaks of resistance to the Christophobic onslaught began to occur, which in turn was followed by MSM reporting. At the time—let the record show—this was a remarkable development, very heartening to us Christmas cranks.
The counterarguments have been mixed. Some, like Frank Rich in a December 19 New York Times column (attacking both Mel Gibson and those defending Christmas) argued that this is much ado about nothing, since Christmas is the same as ever….
Others, such as Cathy Young of Reason and Jonah Goldberg of National Review, urged everyone to 'lighten up', which, although seeming at first glance to be a 'plague on both your houses' argument, actually trivializes Christmas as something no one should be concerned about. They don't write many columns urging people to 'lighten up' about things they actually care about."
Finally some, such as Julian Sanchez at Reason, take a different tack at trivializing Christmas, by saying our concerns represent an absurd attempt by a still-overwhelming majority to claim 'persecution.' But, obviously, just because no one is being fed to the lions doesn't meant that what's going on isn't worthy of noticing.
My conclusion about the War Against Christmas in 2004:
There is finally a widespread awareness that it exists. But as with the immigration debate, I believe, it will next emerge that the War Against Christmas is not merely an accident. Its backers really want it.
Next year, they will get nasty.
4. War On Christmas Denial 2005-2007
But I was too early, as usual. They didn't get nasty immediately, they just got
From: Wayne Goodfellow [Email him]
The Boston Globe editorializes on the War On Christmas:
Belgium is deeply infected by the diversity delusion, the dangerous idea that all cultures are equally wonderful expressions of the human spirit. It doesn’t help that the local Islam is particularly virulent, with jihadist groups like Sharia4Belgium urging the murder of infidels to further their goal of establishing a sharia-ruled planet.
As a result, the Brussels political leadership doesn’t want any more trouble (e.g. Muslim rioting over burqas) and is willing to reject European customs to appease the immigrant invader. (See my earlier report, Brussels Axes Christmas Tree so Muslims Won’t Be Offended.)
Below, a traditional Christmas tree once beautified Brussels’ historic town square.
Now the city has replaced the tree with an abstract rendition designed not to offend any of Brussels’ 250,000 resident Muslims.
Brussels has promoted its new non-tree as fun, colorful and modern. The gizmo has sparkly electronic bells and whistles to beguile the easily amused.
But some concerned citizens are not happy about their Christmas traditions being carelessly tossed aside. Thousands have signed petitions to object.
Abstract Christmas tree sparks protests in Brussels, BBC, November 30, 2012
Thousands of people have signed a petition against an abstract light installation replacing the traditional Christmas tree in Brussels city centre.
BlazingCatFur shares this photo from a reader, snapped at the University of Toronto, that reads: “Hang something from your culture on The Holiday Tree.”
Dunno whether this is part of an official diversity outreach program from the administration, or merely a freelance expression. There’s only the picture.