Monday, November 4, 2013

It's Already Begun

November 4th, 2013. 2:23pm.

I'm sitting in my local Starbucks surrounded by red and green merchandise and there's Christmas music blasting in my ears. Two months to go and we're already getting primed for Christmas by our corporate overlords.

I've been quietly boycotting Christmas for about 5 years now. I don't make a big production out of it. Whenever questioned on the topic I try to keep my answers as generic and simple as possible. My boycott isn't some cry for attention nor do I want to push my views on others. I also don't want to offend anyone.

I've been cornered on this topic more often than I care to remember. Strangers, co-workers, family members, and friends have all, at one point or another, pushed the issue. No matter how evasive I am, people can't seem to let it go.

I get it. It's rare for people to just quit Christmas. It's no surprise that the first question I get is regarding my faith. Apparently being a Jehovah's Witness is the only legitimate reason for boycotting Christmas.

Reactions go something like this: confusion, because why would anyone willingly choose to abandon Christmas?; anger, because I just gave them a bunch of reasons; and finally sadness, because poor me, I must be miserable. I've been called a Grinch so many times I just started accepting it. When rational arguments are met with insults, no matter how silly, then you'd best walk away. It's all downhill from there.

To recap: I never initiate these awkward conversations and I do everything in my power to derail them before it's too late. Even after it's too late, I never pass judgment on people who celebrate Christmas. To each their own, I say. Despite all of these precautions, I get ostracized and insulted. People infer that maybe I'm just an angry, bitter person who is incapable of feeling joy.

My boycott is a personal choice based on critical thought and research. Furthermore, this choice only affects me. My family is free to celebrate however they choose. I'm not trying to stop anyone from doing what they want. So why do I get so much grief for my personal decision?

This year, I decided to take a new approach.

I've been building my case for long enough. It's time to put Christmas on trial.

You can be the jury. If at the end you still think Christmas is a valid holiday worthy of celebration, I will wish you the best. I'm not on a crusade to wipe out Christmas or anything, only trying expose you to some new ideas and present old ideas in a new light. If these ideas convince you to abandon Christmas, great. If not, also great. As long as you're happy, I'm happy. At least now my opinion will be out there for all to see. I can refer any inquiries to the blog.

The way I see it, if I have to listen to "Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer" for the next two months, I might as well give something back. I'll be posting my Christmas rants every Friday, nowhere near as often as I will have to listen to some infuriatingly catchy Xmas song, and on December 24th, I'll drop my closing statement.

Consider it a gift. Some of you will undoubtedly think it's a lump of coal, but it's the thought that counts, right?


/Rant over
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