Merry (Insert Holiday Here)

Ferris students open up about the Christmas domination of December

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.