“Worth Fighting For?”
In a flurry of giggles and smiling faces, the children gathered around the old man and cried, “Grandpa, grandpa, tell us again what you did in the war.”
The old man smiled and sat back. “Are you sure? You’ve all heard it before.”
This was met with cries of “Yes, yes,” and “Please, please.”
“Alright. When I was about your age, there were these atheists and freethinkers who wanted to destroy Christmas by turning it into a non-holiday. They won the first few battles, but then people like your old grandpa began fighting back. Every time they filed a lawsuit, we filed two or three back at them. If they put up some stupid freethinking tree, we’d plant a forest of God-fearing Christmas Trees. They’d write books explaining their,” the old man sneered the word, “‘beliefs,’ and we wouldn’t read ‘em. We would write our own books, mocking them and calling them names and we’d make millions.”
The old man had nearly risen out of his chair at the end of his tirade, but he sat back and looked at the glowing faces of the children. “In the end, we beat their godless little butts through sheer numbers. And it was all so you kids today can celebrate Christmas the way Jesus intended; by propping up foreign economies by buying tons of cheap, worthless crap.” The children exploded in cheers.
“Now, why don’t you kids waddle into the kitchen and get yourselves a nice handful of Madam Wong’s Special Christmas Cookies, and grab me a cup of MegaMart Brand Eggnog, and I’ll put on the obligatory Christmas album of the same tired old songs just sung by different people, volume 47. Then we can all gather around the MegaMart Brand Christmas Tree, the best Christmas Trees in the land, and you can all open your 877 presents, all of which require no less than six C-sized batteries which you’ll burn through faster than the Christmas Blend Coffee at Gertrude’s passes through me, not that it really matters because you will only play with the thing for five minutes before you get bored and never touch it again. In fact it may even get lost in the ton of wrapping paper we’ll be throwing away today and you’ll cry and cry and cry and we’ll have to buy you a new one at MegaMart, although you’ll lose interest in that one just as fast.”
I first wrote this story back in the heady “War on Christmas” days. I was going through my stories recently, and I figured this one needed to see the light of day again.
My take is that there is confusion because there are three Christmases. There is the religious holiday where people go to church and whatever, there is the secular holiday where families spend time together, and there is the three month orgy of consumerism. I think that many of those who fight for Christmas don’t realize that they’ve already lost the war; not to the freethinkers, but to the corporations.