I was out shopping the other day, and advent calendars are all the rage. I love seeing what new designs are out, and how creative brands get with their designs. I found a really cute one that I absolutely loved (not the one pictured) but when I picked it up, it said, “Happy Holidays.” I set it down, and said to myself that had it said Merry Christmas, I probably would have bought it. I will admit, when people started the big thing about saying “Happy Holidays” to me at Christmastime, and when I was told as a retail employee that I was not allowed to say “Merry Christmas” to customers, I was one of those people who was offended. It’s Christmastime, after all, why can’t I say “Merry Christmas?”
The truth is, someone completely took someone saying “Happy Holidays” to them out of context, as does happen quite frequently in this country, they got butt hurt, and there goes humanity. As time went on, though, and I, admittedly, grew up a little, I came to realize that “Happy Holidays” isn’t meant to be offensive at all. It is actually meant to be more politically correct, so as to NOT offend anyone when wishing a holiday sentiment to passersby, customers, and anyone who we may not know their holiday affiliation.
If you’re one of those offended people, take a look at the number one reason why it’s really kind of silly to be offended by this simple, non-denominational greeting this holiday season.
Christmas is not the only holiday celebrated at the end of the year.
Shocking, I know. While Christmas seems to be the main point of celebration for many people, it’s not the only holiday celebrated between Thanksgiving and Christmas in the United States, let alone the rest of the world. Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, Advent, Saint Nicholas Day, I could go on, but I think you get it. The point is, when someone else tells you “Happy Holidays,” it could merely mean they are being respectful of you, not knowing what celebration takes the forefront in your life during this time of year. If they were to say, “Happy Hanukkah” instead, would you be less offended if you celebrate Christmas? My guess is that you would probably still be offended, since you are not Jewish, and you would make some snide remark before saying “Merry Christmas” in response. Just remember, you’re not the only one celebrating this time of year. 😉
Seriously, it’s that easy. In a world where people are afraid to be kind to one another in fear of retribution for unforeseeable reasons, “Happy Holidays” seems to be the safest bet to NOT offend anyone, and yet so many have turned the phrase around to be offensive. While I celebrate Christmas (and still wish people a Merry Christmas!) I have many friends who celebrate different holidays. And though I love it when they wish me a Merry Christmas, I will be the first to admit it is difficult to remember who celebrates what this time of year. Though “Happy Holidays” has become the blanket term for wishing someone a happy celebration, what I wish for anyone at this time of year is to simply Be Merry.
Be Merry in your interactions with people.
Be Merry when someone wishes you well.
Be Merry in your gatherings and social events.
Be Merry, Be Merry, BE MERRY!
Oh yeah, and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!