Getting the Politically Correct ‘Holiday’ Politically Incorrect—and How to Fix It

The politically correct crowd is constantly worried about offending someone’s sensibilities by “including” all holidays. But what about those who recognize no holiday?

The politically correct crowd insists that it is somehow not correct to wish people a “Merry Christmas.” Instead, we are supposed to say, “Happy Holidays.” But something’s always troubled me about that. And now I’ve put my finger on it. I’ve put all my legal skills to bear on this complex problem, and perhaps there is another way.

I know that the problem with “Merry Christmas” is that those who extend that greeting are supposedly hoping people find merriment in a Christian religious observance. Of course, if you think that our culture, on the whole, really perceives Christmas as a religious observance, then you may be one of those who got up at 3 a.m. on Black Friday to go “worship” on the “advent” of the Christmas season.

I know that wasn’t very politically correct, but on to the business at hand—what greeting do you give people at this time of year? The politically correct crowd that is constantly worried about offending someone’s sensibilities suggests we say, “Happy Holidays,” to respect those who celebrate Kwanza or Hanukkah or maybe something else I’ve forgotten.

But what about those who recognize no holiday? For instance, Jehovah’s Witnesses? Are we not imposing on them our beliefs about the “religious” and “celebratory” nature of the season since they don’t celebrate Christmas or anything else this time of year (at least not to my knowledge)? So, why doesn’t the politically correct crowd suggest we just say something like, “Enjoy the Season?” After all, it is a season of the year for everyone.

Ah, but winter, with its cold, is not that enjoyable to a lot of people. Rather the cold makes them feel miserable. But I guess that’s a good reason to wish they would enjoy it, for wouldn’t we rather they enjoy it than be miserable all season?

But, wait. That creates another problem. Why would I want to try to tell people how they should feel? After all, my feelings are just that—my feelings. Why should someone else try to tell me how to feel? That’s not very sensitive. I should be affirmed in whatever feelings I have, and others should respect that.

Trying to be the most politically correct that I can (which you readers know is my life’s ambition), let me suggest the following to you who really want to avoid any offense. Maybe I should print it out on little cards and hand them out:

Please feel however you want to feel about whatever you might want to have any feelings about, or if you prefer, please do not feel like you have to any feelings at all about this time of year or feel like you have to have any feelings at or about any other time of year if you do not feel like feeling anything right now, and, of course, feel free not to feel anything at any time if that’s what you feel like, in which case I hope nothing or no one interferes with how you are feeling or not feeling at the time you choose to be feeling or not feeling something.

To all the rest of you willing to risk being offended, may I say, “Merry Christmas!”