Why Christians Should Support the “War on Christmas”


By Justin Adams

‘Tis the season to get outraged. Or that’s what it seems like, anyway. Each year the Christmas/holiday season (take your pick) seems to be more and more absorbed in this stupid debate about a “War on Christmas” being waged by politically correct, high-minded, liberal busy-bodies. Christian bloggers and tweeters grab their pitchforks to defend the holiday. Fox News inevitably runs a week-long special on the “War on Christmas,” highlighting examples of businesses across the world that replace “Merry Christmas” with “Happy Holidays,” arguing that this is emblematic of America’s gradual decline into moral depravity. A lot of people make the argument that this development is a good thing, a sign of America’s transition to a rational secular society. But that’s not my argument. My argument is that the “War on Christmas” should be welcomed first and foremost by Christians themselves. It sounds counter-intuitive, but let me explain.

If you’re a Christian, then I imagine that for you, Christmas represents the day that Jesus Christ was born to the Virgin Mary in Bethlehem, complete with angelic choruses, shepherds from the field, and wise men from the East bearing gold, frankincense and myrrh. It’s about “peace on earth and good will toward men.” If this is what Christmas means to you, then the real “War on Christmas” you should be worried about is the commercialization of Christmas.

The commercialization of Christmas has been going on for a long time. Any company that sells anything hops aboard the polar express and rides it all the way to money town. Christmas has become so synonymous with consumerism that it can be hard for even religious people to remember the real “reason of the season,” as they see it.

From my perspective, every time a company abandons its “Christmas” decorations, festivities or commercials in favor of more generic “holiday” equivalents, Christmas as a religious holiday becomes more special. Obviously, they’re still going to profit off Christmas because this is America and making profit by any means necessary is practically a first amendment right, so that’s never going to change. At the end of the day, do you want to see commercials for Walmart and Toys R Us themed around baby Jesus? I certainly don’t, and I don’t think baby Jesus would like that either.

So who cares if Christ is no longer the center of Christmas in the public sphere? Do you think Jesus cares if Target employees say “Happy Holidays” or if the state capital discontinues its Nativity scene? Probably not. I imagine he’s a lot more concerned with what each of us as individuals are doing to spread “peace on earth and good will toward men.”

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