I think actions speak louder than words, but what we are talking about is really just words. Do the words of a greeting from a store employee make them any more or less genuine because it was mandated by company policy? What about those of your friends? If you are a Christian are you not flattered when an atheist friend remembers to wish you a "merry Christmas"? I know I am.
What about gifts? Are Christmas gifts or Chanukah gifts somehow better
than those given out of fellowship or love that don't have a holiday attached? Isn't the spirit
of a gift or a greeting what is really important?
This debate has been about words and so, with permission, I give you an example of action:
From the Staff Forum:
Originally Posted by Saint Kurt
This year we have a gift for our members!
Northstar, Bamfette, and I have been quietly (and not so quietly) working on setting up a brand new Coppermine Gallery.
Many of our members miss the old gallery so it's going to be great to be able to offer content again. I'm really excited about this.
To be both politically correct and simultaneously avoid any anti-Christmas or anti-anti-Christmas backlash (like with the Holiday trees...you just can't win) Nightscrawlers members will get to open their gift on New Year's Day.
It was posted on Dec. 3rd - fully 24 days
before this debate about Christmas and Holidays began. It is the thread in which I announced to the staff the intention to give a gift to the forum as well as our chosen date to give it.
From the Triumvirate:
Originally Posted by Saint Kurt
Here's what I want to do with the gallery:
I want to give it as a holiday gift to the members of the forum (as the subject indicates).
I was thinking about New Years Day as the day so it couldn't be construed as a gift belonging to any particular religious holiday.
Posted Nov. 27, nearly a month after Northstar and I put the kabosh on giving the gallery as a party favor for my birthday (and to celebrate Nightcrawler's, Dave Cockrum's, and Darick's birthdays as well) because it wasn't ready. It was then that we decided "around Christmas, but not ON Christmas".
So, I apologise my friends, but it is not only the big corporations - it is here.
Why did we chose the date we did? Why, all the way back in October did I start thinking of alternatives to a "Christmas Present" for the members of our website?
Simple. Not all of our staff believes in Christ, or God, or Allah, or Mithras or whatever so it would be inappropriate to force them to make such a gesture on behalf of any particular religious celebration. And because not all of our membership celebrates Christmas, or Chanukah, or Ramadan, or Dies Natalis Solis Invicti etc. I wanted to make a sure our gift was inclusive as possible. Everybody celebrates New Years. (Except for Northstar, but I'm going to get him a bitchin' card on Rosh H'Shona to make up for it). Jan 1 was unanimously agreed upon by the entire staff as an appropriate choice not just because of the portential conflicts it avoided, but because it was a great way for Nightscrawlers to start the New Year off with a bang.
The project was 5 months in the making. The first post in the staff forum kicking off the resurrection of the gallery was in August and within a day we had a test install running. The rest of the time as been spent learning the new software, finding the images, and ironing out the kinks; putting a lot of love into a gift we hoped our members would love.
So, now I ask you, is this gift from us, who actively avoided associating it with Christmas or any other religious holiday, any less special to you now that you know the truth?
We hope not, because the spirit in which it was given remains unchanged.