During the current holiday season, the usual ornery voices criticizing the use of the phrase “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas” have resurfaced. But such criticism has gone on for long enough that their fulminations are no longer widely heeded. To try and understand why people should say “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays”, and make the message of celebrating Christmas relevant to a new generation, we decided to speak with Brent Charles “Chad” Worthington, the Outreach Director of the Institute for Creating Holiness by Restoring Innocuous Staging of Topically Meaningful and Appropriate Sermonizing (the CHRISTMAS Institute.)
Brent explained that every time someone says “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”, something bad happens somewhere at some point. When pressed for further details on what this “something bad” is, Brent gave a rather unclear answer. “Well, we used to say that every time someone doesn’t say ‘Merry Christmas’, the number of That Kids in their SOSC classes doubles. That was incredibly effective for a while, but its effectiveness tapered off when everyone in every SOSC class became a That Kid. Next we tried saying that every time someone says ‘Happy Holidays’, uchicago-secure crashes. This was not an effective threat at all. We even tried saying that unless students said ‘Merry Christmas’, they would have to wait for ten minutes at crosswalks instead of seven minutes – all to no avail. Now I’m not sure what bad thing will happen when people stop saying ‘Merry Christmas’, and at this point, I’m not even sure when Jesus was born any more. Was he born on the twenty-fifth of December? Or was it the middle of August? Or was it some time in April? Who even knows?” Questioning his life choices, Brent got up and left the building.
Well, you heard Mr. Worthington. If you acknowledge that people might be celebrating holidays other than Christmas, only bad things will happen to you and in the world writ large. Happy holidays, everyone!