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Chris Queen

Hating Christmas

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Posted on December 25 2010 6:00 am
Chris Queen hails from Covington, GA. Check out his blog, Random Thoughts From The Revolution, and follow him on Twitter.

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10. “Reason” For The Season

In November, a group called the American Atheists paid $20,000 for a billboard on Route 495 outside the Lincoln Tunnel. The billboard caused a bit of a stir.

The billboard shows a silhouette of the Three Wise Men approaching the Nativity, with the words: “You KNOW it’s a Myth / This Season, Celebrate REASON!”

Reason? What is this, the 18th century?

The group says the billboard is not designed to convert Christians to atheism. Rather, Dave Silverman, a spokesman for the American Atheists, says the sign is designed to encourage existing atheists who are going through the motions of celebrating Christmas to stop.

Needless to say, the billboard has garnered some adverse reactions:

For example, Mary Elizabeth Williams at Salon.com writes:

It’s that snotty, oh-just-face-it-you-idiots attitude, that utter certainty, that’s just as belligerent coming from an atheist as it from an evangelical.

And Andrew Belonsky at Death and Taxes says:

[T]his latest campaign basically says Christians are a bunch of senseless twits. That’s no way to build good will, something in which everyone, even Atheists, should believe.

And:

Thanks a lot, American Atheists, you not only fan the flames of politicized religion, you make everyone believe that those who don’t believe are just plain jerks.

For a group that’s not trying to lure people away from faith, the American Atheists sure are some angry people who really do wind up looking like jerks. Their website fires this little nugget across the bow:

Christians don’t own this holiday, and never did. Christianity is neither the first, nor the 5th, nor the 10th mythology to adopt the Winter Solstice as their major day. Mythra, Bel, Krishna, Horus, and even the Mayan Qetzalcoatl were all born on the Winter Solstice. Jesus, if you believe the Bible, was actually born in the Spring, but early Christians changed it to mesh with other mythos (look it up).

Indeed, none of the trappings of Christmas are Christian. All of it predates Christianity. Yuletide, and Yule logs come from the Pagan holiday of Yule (the pagans also took the Solstice for their own). Santa Claus is Nordic, Germanic, or Celtic, depending on who you ask, and there were no tinsel-covered evergreens in Bethlehem — that’s Pagan too.

Christians don’t deserve a monopoly on holiday cheer. We all own a piece of the Solstice (whatever you call it).

Take that, Christians! You don’t celebrate on Jesus’ real birthday! And your customs are pagan! (These are actually themes that we’ll see more than once in our look at the assault on Christmas.)

The funny thing is that, earlier on the same page of the website, the group says this:

Our goal is equality for atheists.

So, apparently for them, equality doesn’t find a home in the “live and let live” attitude that most Americans subscribe to. It’s more of a mindset of, “we’re pissed off and think we’re oppressed, so we want you to be as pissed off and oppressed as we are.” Ebenezer Scrooge was more pleasant that these people.

Merry Christmas, atheists!

Next: Christmas is responsible for what?

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