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Old 10-23-2005, 08:07 PM   #196
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Christmas... Christ mass or Christ festival. Whether you take it as such ot not, it is a holiday (the word used to be Holy day) that celebrates a religious figure. I don't think there are many kids who don't recognize the word/name Christ and understand what it refers to, whether their families worship or not.
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:14 PM   #197
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Originally posted by STING2


Its always interesting when people make ignorant presumptions about others. Part of my family is also Jewish. Also interesting to see that calling a Christmas Party a Christmas Party is now being compared to slavery.
I made no presumptions or comparisons. I'm just showing other American "traditions" that have changed.
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:19 PM   #198
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Originally posted by STING2


I can't imagine going to another country and demanding they stop calling or performing centuries old traditions because it was not apart of my culture or tradition. On the contrary, I'd be far more interested in immersing myself in the culture rather than trying to water it down or block it.
Why do you keep talking about moving to another country. This isn't about people moving here wanting to make a change. It's about the people here realizing this country is not a Christian country. That there are other religions and when attending school, we should take that into consideration.
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:26 PM   #199
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Quote:
Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


I made no presumptions or comparisons. I'm just showing other American "traditions" that have changed.
Really?

Check out this qoute.

"Well they do say ignorance is bliss. It's nice being part of the majority all your life, I'm guessing the only place you've ever been a minority is in here being part of the conservative few. Being a minority in real life is much different."
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:46 PM   #200
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Originally posted by Sherry Darling
Dread: too bad Feel better.

Sting: A couple of points I might make in response to your last post.

1. From a practical point of view, any teacher can tell you it's not possible to include the holy days of every kid. We'd ever get any teaching done. LOL. Hence from this standpoint, a more all purpose "holiday" fest is the best way to handle scheduling in a way that is inclusive.

2. Your consistently seem to assume that people who protest Christmas are immigrants. This is a telling and false assumption. I would respectfully encourage you to revisit it.

3. You also consistently characertize people who object to their Muslim/Jewish/atheist kid as "whiners" or "over anxious" or "pushing a political agenda". What evidence can you bring to bear to support this description? And what makes you think it's just a few people, anyway? Why, just a tally of this thread alone demonstrates otherwise. BVS, Yolland, Dread, VG and I hardly fit that description, do we?

The below is a general statement and not directed at anyone in specific but musings on people who oppose a simple inclusive gesture such as "holiday party" instead of "Christmas party":
Why so unwilling to share public space? Why can't we just include everyone just cause it's nice to do so? Because we're a welcoming people who are secure enough to be okay with folks who aren't like us?
A Christmas Party is not a Holy Day. Teachers have had Christmas parties for centuries in this country and it obviously did not do anyone any real harm. Its a part of American culture. I never heard anyone describe America as a non-inclusive country because people had "Christmas Parties" instead of "Holiday Parties".

So you can prove that no immigrant families have ever protested the fact that the party was called a Christmas Party and not a Holiday Party?

It always tends to be a small number of people who go to court to remove x considered to be a reference to Christianity.

I forgot that FYM was a perfect example of America. The polls we had in here certainly reflected the outcome of the election, I guess there really is a mass movement to enforce "Holiday Parties" as opposed to "Christmas Parties".

Yep, Christmas Parties always were a way to exclude other people. Thats the whole point of giving gifts to other people regardless of their faith or race, eating food, and asking Santa for a couple of things in the stocking.

Why should a country have to change a tradition because a few people suddenly don't like it? No one is excluded by having a Christmas Party unless someone tells one to leave which they should not.

Its ok to maintain cultural traditions that have been in place for centuries. Such traditions are not done to exclude anyone and everyone is open to participate in them. So have some Cake, talk to a friend, give a gift, decorate a tree, and go over to the big man in the red suit if you feel like it.
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:50 PM   #201
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


Why do you keep talking about moving to another country. This isn't about people moving here wanting to make a change. It's about the people here realizing this country is not a Christian country. That there are other religions and when attending school, we should take that into consideration.
Having a Christmas Party at school is a tradition, not an enforcement of state religion. Its been apart of American culture for centuries now, and no, a Christmas party is not parallel to 19th century slavery.
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Old 10-23-2005, 09:24 PM   #202
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So tradition for tradtion's sake?
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Old 10-23-2005, 09:55 PM   #203
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Bring on Festivus.

http://uglychristmaslights.com/

This site is a good argument for limiting the celebration of Christmas.
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Old 10-23-2005, 10:26 PM   #204
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How many Christmas parties, school or office or wherever, actually have anything to do with Christmas though? (not including drunk guys wearing Santa hats).

They're really 'End of Year' parties. I'm sure some schools incorporate the Christmas story in or whatever, but seriously, most Christmas parties are about as un-Christian as you could possibly get...
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Old 10-23-2005, 10:59 PM   #205
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That's actually very true.

I think in these days, the term Christmas Party refers to only the proximity of the actual holiday - ie. late December. I've had Christmas Parties at various jobs for no reason other than to slack off for an afternoon, or catch a hockey game from a corporate box. Nobody brought in a mini manger with them.
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Old 10-23-2005, 11:07 PM   #206
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This kind of stubborn insistence on "Christmas parties" in schools is really more for the adults than children. I'm fairly sure I would have jumped at any chance to discover new traditions and cultures, especially since "real Christmas" is December 25th.

But it's the adults who are scared of multiculturalism, and--the larger subtext--losing cultural domination of America.

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Old 10-23-2005, 11:45 PM   #207
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Yeah, office Christmas parties have absolutely nothing to do with Christmas. The CEO gets up and makes an awful speech blowing the trumpet of the company mainly for the benefit of the clients who are there. A drunk staff member heckles him/her at his own peril. A few other drunk staff members get 'inappropriate' with each other publicly and end up embarrassed. A few others make failed drunken attempts at this and end up embarrassed. Someone throws up. Someone cries. Someone falls over and busts something. Someone ends up punching a waiter who is trying to get them to take their cigarette outside. Three Wise Men this is not. They're 'End of Year' parties, both in a business and social sense, and nothing more.

Mr Earnie Shavers, of course, is always perfectly well behaved.
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Old 10-24-2005, 01:40 AM   #208
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Earnie Shavers, if this is your first night, you HAVE to fight.
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Old 10-24-2005, 05:34 AM   #209
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Thats the way its been in this country for centuries.
It was not problem 200 years ago, 100 years ago, 50 years ago, and is really only and issue now because a small minority has decided to whine about it.
I think the following material, primarily from the History Channel's website, makes it clear that Christmas was not at all the same holiday we know today 200 years ago. Still less is it some pure and uncorrupted cultural legacy tying today's taxpayer-funded kiddie parties directly into the "American culture" of the Founding Fathers, who after all WERE the architects of American national identity as we know it. "Christmas," as observed in school parties today, is a Victorian-era creation.

Quote:
In the early years of Christianity, Easter was the main holiday; the birth of Jesus was not celebrated. In the fourth century, church officials decided to institute the birth of Jesus as a holiday. By holding Christmas at the same time as traditional winter solstice festivals, church leaders increased the chances that Christmas would be popularly embraced, but gave up the ability to dictate how it was celebrated. By the Middle Ages, Christianity had, for the most part, "replaced" pagan religion. On Christmas, believers attended church, then celebrated raucously in a drunken, carnival-like atmosphere similar to today's Mardi Gras. Each year, a beggar or student would be crowned the "lord of misrule" and eager celebrants played the part of his subjects. The poor would go to the houses of the rich and demand their best food and drink.

When Oliver Cromwell and his Puritan forces took over England in 1645, they vowed to rid England of decadence and, as part of their effort, cancelled Christmas. The pilgrims, English separatists that came to America in 1620, were even more orthodox in their Puritan beliefs than Cromwell. As a result, Christmas was not a holiday in early America. From 1659 to 1681, the celebration of Christmas was actually outlawed in Boston. After the American Revolution, English customs fell out of favor, including Christmas. In fact, Congress was in session on December 25, 1789, the first Christmas under America's new constitution. Christmas wasn't declared a federal holiday until June 26, 1870.

By the coming of the Civil War the antipathy shown toward the celebration by some religious groups and like-minded individuals was rapidly softening. Indeed, "by 1859, the general attitude towards Christmas had changed sufficiently for the Sunday School Union" to accept the holiday to such a degree that it published hymns and accounts of celebrations. This was emblematic of a general acceptance of Christmas by many denominations.

Successive waves of German immigrants probably packed in their cultural baggage the custom of adorning their homes with a small tree. As they spread through the nation, so too did the decorated tree. The Christmas tree had become widely established by 1860.

Governments recognized the growing importance of Christmas by dealing with it as they knew best: by passing a law. Prior to the American Civil War, the North and South were divided on the issue of Christmas. Many Northerners considered it sinful to celebrate Christmas, since Thanksgiving was a much more "appropriate" holiday. In the South, however, Christmas played an important role in the social season. Perhaps not surprisingly, the first three American States to declare Christmas a legal holiday were located in the South: Alabama in 1836, and Louisiana and Arkansas in 1838. Between 1850 and 1861, fifteen more states followed suit. In 1907, Oklahoma became the last US state to declare Christmas a legal holiday. A significant result of this "legislation" was the states' recognition of December 25th as Christmas Day. This helped standardize the date for celebration. Previously, celebrations took place at varying times during the month (particularly December 6th, St. Nicholas's day, or January 6th, Epiphany).

The greatest of all modern Christmas icons, Santa Claus, was evolving during the same period. St. Nicholas' first appearance in the New World was in 1492, when Columbus named a bay after him. Times became rather lean for the saint after that, partly because America's mainly Protestant settlers disdained saints and the rituals associated with them. Washington Irving, Clement Moore, and the anonymous author of Kriss Kringle's Book (1842) were the literary pioneers who helped establish Santa Claus. Kriss Kringle's Book told of St. Nicholas, or Kriss Kringle, a "nice, fat, good humored man" who brought gifts for good children.
BTW, as a footnote...Chanukah was first celebrated by American Jews in New Amsterdam in 1654, and has been continuously observed by religious American Jews ever since with virtually no changes to its ritual form (minus, of course, the appearance of holographic silver-and-blue wrapping paper, which I personally consider indispensable ). But of course, I'm not so foolish as to hope this might have earned it an honorary token place at the American holiday table by now. We're just another whining and ungrateful minority riding Christendom's coattails to success, after all!
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Old 10-24-2005, 08:06 AM   #210
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Wow, I can't believe I just slogged through 14 whole pages of this?

As a Christian living in a majority Muslim country where we are observing the month of Ramadan, I wish you all a very happy holiday season.
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