I’m sure like me, all of you have come to know and love Pat Robertson. Whether he’s blaming atheists for the Sikh temple shooting or wondering aloud of God will send a meteor to Disneyland for their acceptance of homosexuality, we know that if there’s something unpleasant going on in the world, he’ll blame someone he doesn’t like for it all.
I think this time around, he realized that he hadn’t been complaining about atheists enough in recent weeks … so he thought he’d remind us that people like me are the reason why you’re miserable. And here I thought it was from a lack of sunlight.
“It’s … well … Christmas all over again … umm … the Grinch is trying to steal our holiday. It’s been so beautiful … the nation comes together, we sing Christmas carols, we give gifts to each other, we have lighted trees, and it’s just a beautiful thing. ATHEISTS don’t like our happiness. They don’t want you to be happy; they want you to be miserable. They’re miserable, so they want you to be miserable … so they want to steal your holiday away from you.
Oh, Pat … you didn’t even try on this one. It’s as if you attacked atheists not because you wanted to, but because you were almost under a contractual obligation to say something about us before Thanksgiving. Maybe God threatened you with a meteor. Seriously, if you had given it more thought, you’d have realized that none of the things you mentioned have anything to do with the supposed birth of your savior.
Christmas carols, for example. Well, sure, the ones created by the church are relevant to your religion, but that’s not how the tradition was started. They were originally pagan songs, sung during the winter solstice while people danced around stone circles (“carole” means “circle dance” in Old French / Anglo-Normal, derived from Latin “choraula”). The exchanging of presents started in ancient Rome during the Sigillaria, the last day of the winter solstice celebration of Saturnalia. Lighted trees – or at least the use of evergreen trees, wreaths, and branches had its roots (no pun intended) in the pagan Germanic people during pre-Christian times.
Now it is true that after the spread of Christianity, all of these individual elements were absorbed into what we currently understand as Christmas … but they have nothing to do with Christ … not that any of it did long ago either. Which leaves me to wonder why, of all possible things to pick as elements of Christmas atheists supposedly hate, you chose the cultural aspects that everyone, regardless of their belief, almost universally enjoys.
I dunno, Pat … I’m disappointed. You’re losing your touch.