Sunday 21 December 2014

I was invited to "A Holiday Party"

recently and I declined the invitation.
There were two reasons for this, the first was that I do not like standing around listening to people I barely know while they are talking about things I know nothing about and am not interested in. (Office gossip.)
The second however was the more serious reason. I object to the term "Holiday Party" when it is used as a "politically correct" term. This would once have been a "Christmas Party".
     "We're not allowed to call it that now," the person who invited me told me.
Not allowed?
     "Oh and when you come in please don't say "Merry Christmas" to anyone. We're not allowed to do that anymore."
Hold it right there. Nobody tells me I can't do that. This is political correctness gone mad.
I do not wish my Jewish, Muslim, Hindu etc. friends "Merry Christmas". I have no reason to do that - although they sometimes tell me, "I hope you have a nice Christmas Day Cat" and I have said similar sentiments about their holidays.
But is there any reason not to wish other people a "Merry Christmas", especially when I know they celebrate it in a much more vigorous fashion than I do?
There is nothing "multi-cultural" or "respectful" about ignoring our own traditions simply because other people have different traditions. It merely suggests to others that our traditions are of so little importance that we will just give them up. It encourages extremists to believe they are winning their war against all things western and Christian. It denies people the right to express a sentiment that is as much part of our cultural tradition as Hanukah or Eid is part of other cultural traditions.
I was in the supermarket yesterday and saw a friend I had not seen for some weeks. We stopped to talk for a moment. Several people walked past we both knew. They said things like "Merry Christmas" and "have a great Christmas" to me. They did not say it to her because she was wearing a hijab. But a couple of times my friend also responded with things like, "Hope you have a good Christmas" and the response would be something "Thanks, have a good New Year."
We need to get over the ridiculous nonsense that we can't have our traditions simply for fear of upsetting somebody else,  If we can't respect ourselves then we can't respect them either.


h said...

Quite right.

Anonymous said...

Brilliantly well put Cat! Chris

jeanfromcornwall said...

Grandaughter has just finished first term at infants' school. Her Mum was concerned about the cards, since it is tradition for each child give one to each classmate. She was wondering whether it was ok to give one saying Merry Christmas to the girl who's Mother is a Jehovah's Witness, and does not celebrate it. And what about the little boy who's middle name is Mohammed? In the end she decided to just go ahead as though she didn't know the difference, and sure enough, each child came back with one saying Merry Christmas.

Anonymous said...

Politically correct for whom?