Tuesday, November 13, 2007

What exactly is Christmas?

The latest AFA alert arrived in my inbox this evening lamenting the fact that Lowe's is calling their Christmas trees "Family Trees" in their Holiday 2007 catalog.

You may recognize the AFA (American Family Association) as the loudest group out there protesting America's alleged assault on Christmas. And they leave no stone unturned in their relentless pursuit of evidence to support their cries, as you can tell from this latest emergency alert.

In an effort to avoid the use of the term "Christmas tree," Lowe's has renamed their Christmas trees and are now calling them "Family trees."

In their Holiday 2007 catalog, containing 56 pages of Christmas gifts, Lowe's advertises hundreds of gift items, including scores of "Family trees." In fact, the word "Christmas" only appears two times in the entire holiday catalog. The ads mentioning "Christmas cover only 12 square inches of the 5236 square inches available.

Lowe's even has one of their Family trees turned upside down on a stand. We are not sure what the significance of that is.

Lowe's evidently did not want to offend any non-Christians, therefore they replaced "Christmas tree" with "Family tree." Of course, if Christians are offended that is evidently ok.

In what may be an attempt to sound fair, the alert goes on to list all the times the word Christmas turns up on products using the Lowe's online catalog search (174 products). However, AFA attributes the inclusion of the word Christmas in the product descriptions not to Lowe's marketing staff, but to the manufacturers who provide ready-made descriptions for them.

This overt mindreading on the part of AFA makes me question how many Christians are genuinely offended by the marketing decisions of Lowe's and others like them, and how many are convinced at AFA's command to be offended after reading this alert.

Several years ago I read up a little about the history of Christmas in this country, and seem to recall at one time shortly after the colonies were established, it was the Christians who wanted Christmas banned, to protect the integrity and sanctity of the historical event which was to be celebrated only in spirit. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

I tend to believe that modern day American Christmas in all its fully commercialized marketing exploitations is a gross perversion of the anniversary of the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I'm left wondering why the AFA would not be celebrating any and all evidence of the separation of Christmas from the covetous orgy of consumerism it's become. Is it their intention to consciously maintain a society whose entire economy is based on the act of coveting?

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