Well no I’m not being miserable in this season of festive cheer you will just get no Happy Holidays Greetings from me. I’m no Scrooge or Grouch but I may well be the ghost of Christmas past. I have been brought up as a Christian and people who know me know that I can relate to Christian holidays. So greet me with Xmas holidays, not something alien/obscure to me.
When I started visiting the United States my attention was drawn to the commercial greeting of “Happy Holidays”, I say commercial because it was highly evident in the media, particularly on TV which is commercially funded.
It didn’t take long for me to see some political appeasement in this greeting yet it clearly took away from the occasion of what it means to me. I am a Christian and celebrate Christmas. I’ve never once received any happy holidays cards. I struggle to remember anyone face to face giving me happy holidays greetings.
I’m not a Jew. I have no level of disrespect towards Jews yet I just can’t relate to Hanukkah. For me it means close to nothing. Okay I may not be well educated in the intricacies of the Jewish faith but I respect their beliefs. Really, I do.
In much the same way I respect Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists and Hindu to name but a few. As long as everyone respects everyone and don’t kill or harm each other then that is fine.
I appreciate that the modern day Christmas is often referred to as originally a pagan festival. For me it is now a religious festival celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. It will always mean this to me. It is one of the Christian holidays celebrated by Christians.
I don’t want what is importance to me to be diluted into a little bit of something for everyone because the politically correct crowd don’t want to upset anyone. If you don’t want to upset people then think twice about banning local councils from putting up Christmas trees and Christmas decorations or Merry Christmas cards.
Oh no, you can’t have Christmas decorations, you might offend the minorities! Give me a break. Not putting up decorations is offending the majority! We live in a Christian country which has become a multi-cultural country. Let us celebrate some of that culture. Don’t dilute us with happy holidays greetings, give us our Xmas holidays of Christmas Day, Boxing Day and then we can build up to the New Year celebration.
I have no problem with people celebrating Eid. I even hear of lights being put on Canary Wharf to celebrate it; all the better for it. I don’t have a problem with China Town celebrating Chinese New Year in February, great for them. I even celebrated Pooja with the Indians.
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Christmas is becoming too commercial and losing the essence of what it has historically stood for. Are atheists being hypocritical if they celebrate Christmas because they can over indulge and get presents out of it? Should they have public holidays to celebrate a feast they don’t believe in? Should someone who does not believe in Jesus Christ be entitled to the Xmas holidays?
The concept of “Happy Holidays” is rising more and more in the UK and I think we are worse for it. The Happy Holidays v Merry Christmas debate will just grow and grow.
Stop watering down what is important to me and many others. Let people celebrate and greet each other based on what they believe in when it is harmless and truly not offensive to others.
I know people can say that Happy Holidays Greetings are all-encompassing and can even include the New Year celebration. Well no is what I say. I’ll happily wish someone “Happy Eid”, I’ll greet the next Jew and wish them a “Happy Hanukkah” but I won’t say “Happy Holidays”. And God help anyone who sends me happy holidays cards. Stick with Christmas cards. Even if you send me a Happy Eid card I will appreciate it and be happy with you.
If a Jew wishes me “Happy Hanukkah” I will be happy and happy for them. Okay I can’t really relate to their celebration but I can be happy that they are celebrating something important to them.
One of the most memorable Christmas’ for me was in the year 2000. I was based in Saudi Arabia for most of the build up to Christmas that year. It is a strict Muslim country and I observed the local population celebrate Ramadan over the winter period. I also noticed that there was no mention or build up to Christmas and certainly no happy holidays greetings.
I flew home the weekend before the 25th December to arrive straight into the Christmas celebrations. This was perfect for me. I missed all the long, drawn out commercial build up from September and entered it in the true spirit of the occasion.
So over the coming days I am happy to wish all my readers a “Happy Hanukkah”, a “Happy New Year”, a joyous “25th December”. However you will get no happy holidays greetings from me. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all my readers of Flights & Frustration.