Valdosta Daily Times

What We Think

December 21, 2012

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

VALDOSTA — Until a relatively few years ago, no one seemed to have a problem with either “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” as a greeting until some national chain stores took the fairly ridiculous step of renaming Christmas trees as Holiday trees, and outright banning employees from wishing anyone a Merry Christmas. In response, other folks took the view that such things meant there was an all-out war on Christmas. A Christmas tree should be called a Christmas tree. But also people would well remember that “Happy Holidays” is a greeting of goodwill rather than a personal insult.

“Happy Holidays” is nothing new. It’s been around for years. The greeting covers a lot of ground. It covers Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s, and Kwanzaa.

But “Happy Holidays” also covers several Christmas-related holidays. “Happy Holidays” covers Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and those 12 Days of Christmas which actually start Dec. 25 running through Jan. 5. The Sixth of January is the Epiphany celebrated as the day when the Three Wise Men arrived to see the baby Jesus; Jan. 6 is also known as Three Kings Day.

In our society, when several days, such as Labor Day, are referred to as holidays, we tend to forget the real meaning of this word, too. Holiday means “holy day.”

Happy Holy Days, though one wouldn’t know it from the scorn the greeting often receives. And that may be the most important thing to remember.

Whether it is “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays,” both are meant to wish someone well.

Treating a greeting and warm wishes as a threat does nothing to brighten the world. Responding to a greeting with an actual threat or even a sneer does nothing to put the Christ back into Christmas. Anger and scorn remove Christ from the equation no matter how many times one says Merry Christmas.

Text Only
What We Think
  • The Times belongs to you

    The Valdosta Daily Times belongs to you. As we move forward with new leadership in our newsroom, we want you to know about our continued commitment to the communities we serve.

    July 28, 2014

  • The art of plenty to do

    In Sunday’s paper, readers found an extensive list of shows, exhibits, concerts and more for the upcoming arts seasons in Valdosta-Lowndes County.

    July 27, 2014

  • The power of One

    Christine Batson wondered the same thing that many people wonder.

    July 26, 2014

  • Thumbs Up

    THUMBS UP: To Air Force Lt. Col. David Rayman. The 75th Fighter Squadron commander recently logged 3,000 flight hours in the A-10C Thunderbolt II. A rare feat. In presenting a Moody Air Force Base story on his accomplishment in The Times, it’s good to see the face and know the name of one of the many pilots who cross our South Georgia skies. Congratulations on 3,000 and thank you for your service.

    July 26, 2014

  • Closing another summer chapter

    The South Georgia Regional Library brings its 2014 summer reading program to a close this weekend with an event that celebrates readers and writers.

    July 24, 2014

  • Countdown for voter apathy

    If you don’t think your vote counts, talk to Ellis Black and John Page today.

    July 24, 2014

  • Vote to remove signs

    Congratulations to the winners in the primary runoff election Tuesday.

    July 23, 2014

  • Runoff election counts today

    Today is an election day that started just a little more than two months ago.

    July 21, 2014

  • PSST! Only one week left

    Peach State Summer Theatre enters its final week of performances for the 2014 season. This means there are only a few more opportunities left to see “Mary Poppins,” “Smokey Joe’s Cafe,” and “42nd Street.”

    July 20, 2014

  • The wisdom of animals

    Animals may be smarter than us. If you don’t think so take a look at how we humans deal with the oppressive heat of summer. Compare our activities with those of animals.

    July 19, 2014

Top News

Do you agree with the millage rate increases?

Yes. We need to maintain services
No. Services should have been cut.
     View Results