My answer to the poll: To celebrate the pretty lights and holiday cheer.
'Revolt' makes season a lot less merry
by Eric Zorn
Revealing moments in the radio talk-show debate over Christmas, part one:
Jeff from Memphis, calling the nationally syndicated, Chicago-based program "Beyond the Beltway" (on radio station WLS) Sunday night:
"Merry Christmas! When I was a child, coming from a Christian family it was Christmas ... But now it's been taken over by the Kwanzaa group and some of these other radical groups. ... We already have Black History Month. Why didn't this guy, in California in 1966, put his, quote, holiday, Kwanzaa into Black History Month? Why did he try to interject it [in] a Christian holiday?"
Ooo, "the Kwanzaa group" is it now? And how could they dare try to glom onto the Christian merriment instead of finding their own niche on the calendar?
Well, maybe because "the Christmas group" pulled the same sneaky trick in the 4th Century. Even though scriptural clues put Jesus' birth in the warmer months--September, many scholars say--Christian leaders set the date for celebration to coincide with existing celebrations tied to the winter solstice.
Zagmuk, observed by ancient Mesopotamians, for instance. Sacaea, observed by Babylonians and Persians; Saturnalia, observed by the Romans; Kronos, observed by ancint Greeks; Yule, observed by pre-Christian Germanic people, and so on.
Hanukkah has expanded to meet the cultural challenge of Christmas that Kwanzaa addresses, as it has in recent years the secular humanist celebration of HumanLight and the pop-cultural celebration of Festivus.
Jesus is not "the reason for the season," as so many from "the Christmas group" have smugly informed me in recent weeks. The return of the sun in this hemisphere is the reason for the season, and there are many ways to celebrate it.
...The rest is here: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/colu ... i-news-hed