Better call the waaaaambulance. The "War on Christmas" is in full swing in fundieland, and the first casualties are rolling in. Or not.
Got an email heads-up tonight about the "Naughty and Nice 2009" list cooked up by the American "Family" Association. Right-wing fundamentalists absolutely love their collective persecution complex. It's the only thing they have, really, that gives them any empowerment.
The feelings of entitlement behind the nonexistent "War on Christmas" essentially have to do with Christians not liking the fact that anyone other than themselves exist, as well as not liking the fact that this secular world out there happens to be filled with people who enjoy celebrating the holiday season too, and last of all, going batshit insane over the fact that there are some retailers out there who approach the holiday shopping season with an eye to inclusiveness rather than exclusion. Fundies simply don't want retailers to cater to anyone but themselves. So they've decided that if holiday advertising says things like "Happy Holidays!" instead of "Merry Christmas!", then these are godless evil Christian-hating lefty tree-hugging commie hippie faggot hellbound devil-worshiping retailers who want to make the Baby Jesus cry, and good Jesus-loving Amerikans have a duty to boycott them.
For those of you who don't want to abuse your eyeballs and brain cells by following the link to the AFA page (though there are some abusive comments there that are pretty sweet), I'll just repost their list of "anti"-Christmas retailers below — these would be retailers who cheerfully greet those who celebrate Channukah, Kwanzaa, the Yuletide, or who just enjoy the secular celebrations of gift-giving, sharing love and warmth, and scrumptious turkey and dressing, in addition to Christmas-celebrating Christians. It saddens me that so many Christians are so childish and selfish that they want to deny happiness to all but themselves this time of year. But that's the evil of religion. Thinking you belong to the chosen people of the creator of the universe tends to do ugly things to the egos of people who lack the moral development to respect their fellow humans as much as they demand respect from us.
Companies marginalizing "Christmas" (according to the AFA, this means the company "refers to Christmas infrequently, or in a single advertising medium, but not in others")
Bass Pro Shops
Barnes & Noble
Toys R Us
Companies against "Christmas" (this means the company "may use "Christmas" sparingly in a single or unique product description, but as a company, does not recognize it")
Advance Auto Parts
Barnes & Noble
Dick's Sporting Goods
Home Shopping Network
So what about the companies who are "for" Christmas? Well, you can shop with them too, if you like! Because as atheists, we believe in freedom of choice and conscience, both on the part of shoppers and the companies that service them, and we'd never tell you not to shop somewhere simply because we thought they offended some precious inviolable ideology of ours (and atheists don't really have those kinds of ideologies, anyway). Sure, we might suggest that people shouldn't patronize one business or another if it could be shown that they were engaged in unethical or illegal practices, but in that regard, we're no different than the BBB. So hey, shop anywhere you like this holiday season. And, just to tweak the hateful, empty people at the AFA, throw a few more extra dollars than you planned at the folks they've red-flagged. Spread the love the AFA hasn't got!