Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Boston Globe

Last year, around Christmas time, John Gibson and Bill O'Reilly at Fox News were calling upon viewers to rise up and boycott department stores that posted the words "Happy Holidays" in their shop windows. At the same time Americans preoccupied themselves with this trumped-up "War on Christmas," hundreds of thousands of homeless, hungry, and freezing Pakistanis were just hoping to survive the winter, after October's earthquake.

This year the Globe's Jeff Jacoby is in on the action, leveraging the season to take on the "secular absolutists" and declare that "Judeo-Christian monotheism" is the world's "best bet."

I must be falling behind the times. I had thought the message of Christmas was peace, goodwill, and generosity. I had thought the Christmas story was about taking care of folks who have been left out in the cold. But I suppose it’s more important to use the holiday to let everybody know your religion is the “best,” and to stick it to every department store that says otherwise.

The BBC reported this morning that a lot of those Pakistanis are still without homes, and facing another brutal winter. Maybe I’ll make this year’s donation to UNICEF in Mr. Jacoby’s name.