Merry (Insert Holiday Here)

Ferris students open up about the Christmas domination of December

by Published: Dec 4, 2013

Originally, I was assigned to write an arti­cle for this issue about hol­i­days that take place around Christmastime, as the cov­er­age of hol­i­days like Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and win­ter sol­stice is dwarfed by the cov­er­age of Christmas. No sooner had I set out to find these peo­ple that prob­lems arose.

It was dif­fi­cult find­ing peo­ple who cel­e­brated Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or sol­stice who were will­ing to go on record, as talk­ing openly about reli­gious prac­tices can be con­sid­ered taboo. I found two peo­ple: a Jewish stu­dent who pre­ferred to remain unnamed and a pagan who spent more time bash­ing the prac­tices of oth­ers than she did relat­ing her own.

The ques­tion to take from this expe­ri­ence is “why?” Why is it peo­ple are so averse to talk­ing about prac­tices out­side of what we con­sider the norm?

People have con­ver­sa­tions about their Christmas activ­i­ties all of the time, yet it’s very sel­dom we hear some­one open up about how they cel­e­brated Kwanzaa. I can’t exactly say what the rea­son is, be it because of media or soci­ety, but as some­one who cel­e­brates Christmas, I believe it’s wrong to write off these other holidays.

As the anony­mous com­menter said, “It really does suck not to have your hol­i­day rec­og­nized by the gen­eral pub­lic. I think it’s a lit­tle disrespectful.”

Another stu­dent I inter­viewed said these hol­i­days were given less recog­ni­tion because Christmas has long been hyped up as the year’s biggest hol­i­day, one where com­pa­nies make their for­tunes. If this is true, then these com­pa­nies are short­sighted, as both Hanukkah and Kwanzaa involve the exchang­ing of gifts as well. One would assume the most effi­cient way to make money would be to give air­time to all three hol­i­days, right? So where are all of the Hanukkah and sol­stice tele­vi­sion spe­cials around this time of the year?

Yes, Hanukkah is only just one of many Jewish hol­i­days and Kwanzaa is a fairly new reli­gion, hav­ing only been around since the mid-1960s; how­ever, these hol­i­days are the sec­ond and third most rec­og­nized hol­i­days in the coun­try. Additionally, the peo­ple who cel­e­brate them are mas­sively unrepresented.

So next time you talk about the upcom­ing semes­ter break, instead of call­ing it “Christmas break,” try “hol­i­day break” instead.

  • Angela

    I find it dis­turb­ing that this so-called pagan was bash­ing other reli­gious prac­tices. Most pagans, myself included, would never “bash” another’s reli­gious beliefs. We tend to firmly believe that everyone’s choice of reli­gious affil­i­a­tion should be just as respected as our own. It is those kind of peo­ple that give pagans a bad name and should be ashamed of themselves!

  • 666threesixes666

    I have no prob­lem bash­ing, and under­min­ing oth­ers reli­gions that are forced upon me. “just as respected as our own.” Why should I respect a sys­tem that is so dis­re­spect­ful of my ele­gant sys­tem­atic real­ity? I would rather pun­ish bad behav­ior than be apa­thetic, or reward it. More work, more taxes, more suf­fer­ing, more war is the result of peo­ple not fight­ing oppres­sion. What is the mean­ing of life? Probably to make the future eas­ier, richer, and bet­ter for your chil­dren, neigh­bors, fam­ily, friends, and theirs. “Working” 8 hours a day for bot­tom dol­lar, to pay bills so you can have an empty house that is used only to sleep in, and to gloat the title of “employee” does not sound reward­ing to me at all. You should be ashamed of your­self for accept­ing injus­tice, and com­pla­cently sugar coat­ing turds.

    Just as some peo­ple go to nascar to watch crashes, some peo­ple show up to church to kill jesus, and learn about the power of satan. I want my beer at 8 am sharp sun­day morn­ing. Just because you prac­tice does not mean that I should have to also.