Dec 092008
Authors: Brian Lancaster

This week, I’d like to continue my aptly-named “Bah Humbug” rant with a topic that, frankly, deserves its own piece, rather than sharing the limelight in a top three list.

Every year, slowly but surely, the debate starts. It begins with low rumblings from one side or the other, demanding equality for their religion.

I’ve already seen the billboards around town that say “Keep Christ in Christmas.” Now all we have to do is wait for the local leader of the rabbis to demand that the Menorah have its respected place in all of our holiday decorations for this holiday season to truly kick off.

I was scared. For a brief while after Thanksgiving, I didn’t think that we would have this completely unnecessary argument this year. But I can see that I shouldn’t have been worried — clearly a holiday season without this ridiculously stupid fight for supremacy just wouldn’t be a holiday season at all.

I guess this is just one more reason to hate the holiday season: religious arrogance.

After all, isn’t that really what this debate is: the arrogance to try and establish your religion as the main religion of the holiday season? Can these religious leaders and city officials not respect every religion during this time?

I guess an even more important question is this: can religious leaders be mature enough to not throw a tantrum if their religion is not represented as fully as they would like?

I know it may seem as though I’m indirectly berating the Jewish leaders for this, but I’m not trying to go out of my way to do that; it just so happens that they happen to be the ones that I hear about the most. Believe me, when it comes time for the Christians to do their belly-aching, I’ll still turn a deaf ear.

Many people are perfectly happy with the idea of a holiday season as a cause to celebrate with friends and family and to have good times with good company. Many people are very content to celebrate their own holiday quietly, in their own way, without trying to impose upon others.

It is for these reasons that I just cannot understand why the ridiculous battle starts every year between random religious leader number one and random religious leader number two. Usually, the battle is between local leaders of the Christian and Jewish religions.

Every year, we go through the same song and dance about religiously neutral holiday light colors, and whether or not to include a Christmas tree or menorah with the public decorations around municipal structures.

Usually, the majority of Fort Collins will stay blissfully silent during this time, not supporting their own religious leader or campaigning for their own religion.

This could be because they’re embarrassed. I certainly would be, if I felt connected to either of these religions.

I don’t know what exactly these religious leaders hope to accomplish by posting billboards that say things like “Keep Christ in Christmas,” but I for one am simply annoyed.

Congratulations, person who posted that sign. You have personally evoked a reaction from at least one person.

I guess what I’m really saying is this: Can’t you people just enjoy the holidays as the time to enjoy the family, friends, and blessings that your chosen God has given you, without making such a scene concerning whether or not you see a menorah or Christmas tree at city hall?

I for one am going to fly to Texas; enjoy a Christmas celebration with my mom, my brother, and his wife; and I’m not going to bother anyone about the equality of the Christmas tree. Because I am tolerant.

And I also know when to shut up.

Brian Lancaster is a senior English major. His column appears Wednesdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to

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