Monday, December 16, 2013

Happy Holidays VS Merry Christmas

It's that time of year.

Where people rant about the use of "Happy Holidays" verses "Merry Christmas"

I want to start out by saying, if you are offended when someone warmly wishes you a "Merry Christmas" you might want to take a step back and and think about why you are offended. If you don't celebrate Christmas, if you hate Christmas, if you think Christmas is evil. . . I still don't see why you would be angry that someone said something NICE to you. I think these people must be extremely rare as I have NEVER encountered one. Due to my type of employment, I have encountered many, many people. None of them have ever been offended by being wished "Merry Christmas!"

That being said, the potential of "offense" has never been expressed to me as the reason why many businesses have adopted the use of "Happy Holidays" instead. I haven't researched extensively, so I'm just sharing my own personal perspective on the issue.

Now what I HAVE seen, is people become offended by the use of "Happy Holidays!"

I've seen dozens of Facebook posts and daily have conversations that include statements like "I'm not going with any of this stupid PC crap. . . so I say Merry Christmas!!!!"

Personally, if someone wishes me well I will never take it negatively. If I'm wished a happy Hanukkah, happy Kwanzaa, happy Christmas, or whatever warm wish someone chooses to use- why on earth would I take that poorly? It would be silly. Even if I don't celebrate whatever holiday that may be, someone taking the time to say something nice to me is always appreciated.

However it seems there are those who would find it offensive if I wished them "happy holiday!"

Now, what if my motive behind this isn't to avoid "offending" anyone, but merely to include the fact that there are different holidays celebrated by different religions and nationalities and I would like to recognize them all with one greeting, offered in a warm and friendly manner?


Why is it bad for me to choose to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas!" ?

I've wished many people Merry Christmas for years. None of them have ever been offended.

However, I'm a bit worried to use "Happy Holidays!" due to all the negativity surrounding that greeting by many people during this time of year.

I suppose someone could be offended that my use of "Merry Christmas!" doesn't include the other various holidays and that I'm elevating one holiday over another. Again, I feel this is silly. If Christmas is the holiday I celebrate and if I don't know which one you celebrate, why would anyone be mad that I send them a warm wish representing the holiday I personally celebrate?

This doesn't make sense. Again, if someone wished me "Happy Hanukkah!" I would smile and say "You too!"

I could be wrong, but to me, "Happy Holidays!" is NOT about negating Christmas. . . but rather about including ALL the holidays that ALL people celebrate this time of year. . . it's about being inclusive to EVERYONE-

It's about not EXCLUDING any holiday, or some feeble attempt to "not offend" anyone. 

But apparently that's a bad thing?

It's BAD to include the various holidays that people of different religions and beliefs celebrate?

I have yet to see anyone complain about "Merry Christmas" being offensive. I have not seen one Facebook post or heard one comment from anyone- ever- about this phrase being used on them as a negative thing.

Even now, being non religious and being around more non religious, or religions other than christianity than I ever have before in my life- I have yet to meet a person who would be offended if anyone wished them a "Merry Christmas!"

So I wonder. . . where did this originate?

And I'm curious if anyone else has noticed that in the absence of offense at "Merry Christmas!" There seems to be an overwhelming amount of people who get bent out of shape over "Happy Holidays!"?

If anyone takes the time to send a warm wish your way, regardless of what holiday it is- appreciate it for what it's worth.

Even if it's "Happy Holidays!"

And so my friends, no matter what holiday you celebrate or even if you don't celebrate any- I hope you enjoy this time. If you're with family or by yourself, I hope you are happy and well and enjoying yourself. I hope you are able to see the best of whatever situation you are in, to love yourself and love those around you.



  1. It's part of this perceived "War on Christmas", which is just stupid and not based on anything real. It seems to just be weirdos getting uptight about nothing and making big deals when there is no reason to whatsoever. Celebrate Christmas, don't Celebrate Christmas, who cares?

  2. I want to know where this "war on christmas" originated. . . seems to be gaining more and more believers! Almost every day I have several people tell me how they don't go with "stupid politically correct agenda of happy holidays". . . I just find it ironic that no one is actually offended by "merry christmas" but they sure are offended if you say happy holidays! And what if I'm trying to include new years day in that greeting too? Seriously. Anyway, oh the irony. . .

  3. Yesterday, we took the family to ring a Salvation Army bell at a red kettle. It was a good time. But I can say that I ended up feeling a bit weird every time I said "Merry Christmas," thinking that people would consider me as one of those "War of Christmas" types that refused to say Happy Holidays.

    After a while, it became clear that most people don't give a rip. They say whatever you say, right back. It's functionally the same thing as saying "hello".

    Good analysis.