December 21, 2009

Bah, humbug

By: AFF Editors

Jesuit James Martin has had it up to here with our commercialized Christmas:

“Magic” is another popular word on Madison Avenue: Pier One’s catalog says, “Make Christmas Magic!” Sadly, all I can think of is Mary and Joseph standing around Harry Potter in a manger…

The winner of this year’s worst catch phrase is a tie: between Macy’s and Eddie Bauer. Macy’s shopping bags say, “A million reasons to believe!” In what? What does Macy’s want us to believe in? That Jesus is the Son of God? (Imagine that on a bag.)

Nearly as maddening was the cover of this year’s Eddie Bauer catalog, which proclaims “We believe.” As with Macy’s, I was eager to find out just what Eddie Bauer believed in. The Council of Chalcedon’s fifth-century declaration that Jesus was fully human and fully divine? Not exactly. Page three professed the retailer’s creed: “We believe in the world’s best down.”

Actually, I’m not too worried about the commercialization of Christmas. At least the purpose of the holiday is to celebrate love and faith, unlike Chanukah, which commemorates a fundamentalist insurgency that degenerated into a corrupt dictatorship once it took power. You want a real Jewish holiday? Try Pesach or Yom Kippur.