12/25/2006

This free market, holiday season...

There's Profit in Alleging a 'War on Christmas'



NEW YORK Fox News host/Creators Syndicate columnist Bill O'Reilly is prominent among the conservatives known for complaining about the "War on Christmas" allegedly waged by retailers and others who prefer to say "Happy Holidays."

Now, People for the American Way's Right Wing Watch (RWW) is wondering if this conservative campaign is at least partly motivated by profit.In a Wednesday post, RWW wrote: "Basic math says the Liberty Counsel has pulled in an estimated $300,000-plus, the Alliance Defense Fund an estimated $500,000-plus, and the American Family Association an estimated $600,000-plus from selling their 'War on Christmas' wares."RWW said, for instance, that the AFA "has sold more than 500,000 buttons and 125,000 bumper stickers bearing the slogan 'Merry Christmas: It's Worth Saying.'" Liberty Counsel "has sold 12,500 legal memos on celebrating Christmas and 8,000 of its own buttons and bumper stickers," RWW added.

"While the Right claims that they are merely seeking to thwart an 'accelerating effort by secularists in America to annihilate expressions of Christmas and Christianity,' its effort to generate a controversy where none exists has been a rousing success -- in more ways than one," the post noted wryly.The Carpetbagger Report added that "we can draw two conclusions from this. One, even these religious right groups probably realize Christmas is not 'under attack,' but cynically exploit the fears of their members in order to pad their budgets. And two, if retailers acceded to right-wing demands and dropped 'Happy Holidays' and 'Season's Greetings' from their commercial vocabulary altogether, the religious right would probably experience a deep sense of panic."

Source: Editor & Publisher


...A lull in the war on Christmas

In the early 20th century, New York City's Committee on Elementary Schools urged that Christmas carols be banned in classrooms after 20,000 Jewish students boycotted classes in protest. Some movies in the 1940s, including "Miracle on 34th Street" and "It's a Wonderful Life," introduced a nonreligious iconography that secular and religious Americans could unite behind. In the late 1950s, the John Birch Society issued tracts accusing godless communists of waging war on Christmas.

Read more @ LA Times.

4 comments:

Peace On Earth Good Will Toward Men said...

If The wingnuts really wanted to win the "war on Christmas" they could start by acting more like Jesus than Bill O'Reilly.

Cato said...

Put Saturn back in Saturnalia! Heathens!

Oh...... Right.

It's called Christmas now.

Anonymous said...

Cato:

Looks like Christmas and the Constitution have some commonality -- pragmatic evolution.

Cato said...

Oh ho ho ho, no.