Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry... Holidays

As you know, we all just got off school and are into break. However even in labling this as the "holiday break" brings attention to one of the most dangerous politically correct times of year. This season has become famous for white lights, 'holiday trees,' and 'winter' themed parties. What I wanted to ask is do you think we, as a society, are taking this PC concept of the holidays too far? I understand that to represent one belief may isolate and feel as though it pushes out belief, but being in IB I think we've really tries to make it a point to incorporate different cultures and beliefs, not simply refuse to mention all beliefs all together. But obviously religion, and one group of people questioning anothers can be very, very precarious subject. Are we doing the right thing by censoring so much during this time of year? Or should re-consider what should and shouldn't be allowed?
-Flip Senn


Flip said...

Sorry about the typos

Rachel said...

My aunt and her family are jewish, and I always have to catch myself before wishing them a merry christmas. When we exchange gifts (Hanukah and Christmas respectively), it is to celebrate the holidays - whichever they may be. From that viewpoint, "holidays" is a simple way to be considerate and inclusive without risking the language issue inherent in listing off as many belief systems as possible. There is something rather impersonal about a 'Happy Insert Holiday Here (Christmas-Hanukah-Kwanzaa-Pagan-Atheist Celebration)' card. If your intention is to avoid alienation (no one wants to feel like their holiday is overlooked/a secret) in large groups or of people whose beliefs you are unsure of, 'happy holidays' is a good, simple generic that doesn't leave room for awkward rambling/foot-in-mouth.

Callie said...

I agree that this time of year can be challenging when trying to be respectful and politically correct without offending others by being too politically correct that it excludes people. It is an instance where language as a WOK can be a huge issue that plays into how people act toward each other. I think that whether or not someone wishes me Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas, they are saying it with good intentions during a time of year when most people celebrate some type of event. I personally choose to tell people Happy Holidays because it encompasses New Years Day as well as Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, etc, unless I know that they celebrate Christmas and it would be appropriate to wish them a Merry Christmas. My knower's perspective is that as a Christian I think that Christmas is an important Holiday for religious reasons and I don't want it to be undermined by generic greetings, and I also am a person who respects and embraces other cultures, and I don't want to offend people.