I came across this today...since I live in Washington, I'm quite familiar with the hub-bub surrounding the Winter Solstice Vs. Christmas debate going on in Olympia, my state's capital. I love Gary's take and suggestions on this situation!
WASHINGTON, Dec. 8 /Christian Newswire/ -- The following is submitted by Gary McCullough, director of Christian Newswire:
Is Christmas under attack when signs that mock Christianity are posted next to nativity displays? It seems that a few hundred in Olympia, Washington feel that way to the extent that they protested at the state capitol rotunda on Sunday.
One American atheist has taken his argument to the airwaves claiming he is offended by Christians' intrusion into his Winter Solstice holiday; a holiday he claims was celebrated for thousands of years before Christians infringed on "his" holiday.
Well, he is right. Christians stole his holiday. In fact, in America Christians have stolen all of the holidays once revered by pagan cultures. Let's look at a few atheist holidays.
Halloween was once a revered druid celebration to honor the spirits of the dead. Yet for generations American children dress up as goblins and ghosts and mock such mumbo-jumbo with the phrase "trick or treat" and display no fear or reverence for this holiday's past. Christians successfully usurped this holiday so completely that many think the original holiday was "All Saints Day."
Easter; a time to worship the goddess of fertility. Who thinks Christianity has not thoroughly redefined this holiday? After America goes to church to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, children search for hidden eggs and devour chocolate bunnies with absolutely no regard for the "great and powerful gods of fertility."
Harvest Festival vs. Thanksgiving; the end of the harvest season in the northern hemisphere brought pagan rites of reverence and such for thousands of years before a few pilgrims thanked God. Which holiday has the best football games? The most well attended department store sales? The Christians win again.
To our atheist neighbors, I say, Yes -- we stole your pagan holidays. We have trashed most of your culture; and for good reason. Pagan culture celebrated rape, slavery, and murder.
Christianity has kicked its competitors (behind) for so long -- yet when a couple of atheists put up a little sign -- a few start crying out that we are under attack. I am sorry, but such a response by American Christians is entirely unnecessary. American Christians are not a meek David facing the anti- Christmas Goliath. America's Christianity is an aircraft carrier being rammed by some pagans in a leaking rowboat. Our response should be to throw these "attackers" a lifeline while trying not to laugh.
In the midst of this holiday hubbub you may agree with what one radio talk show host said this morning, "Why don't these atheists leave Christmas alone; go get your own holiday."
If such is your sentiment, I wish to remind you that we already have a day to honor our nation's atheists -- April 1st.