December 12th, 2008


A Festivus for the Rest of Us

In our continuing desire to experience the most obnoxious television programs in existence, bethje and I caught The O'Reilly Factor a few days ago. He was talking about how a Christmas display somewhere (I think it might have been in Washington State) was augmented with an atheist display, and they were considering putting in a Festivus display as well. According to O'Reilly and his guest, a woman from Fox & Friends (presumably a Friend, although I'm still not sure who the Fox is), said that this was disrespectful. I've already addressed Bill's whole War on Christmas issue a few times, most thoroughly here, but in this case he doesn't even have the argument that Christmas is being attacked, because the Christmas tree isn't going anywhere. He might claim that he just wants Christmas to be recognized, but what he seems to actually want is for it to be the only game in town. And he's really hurting his own side by trying to present all Christians as humorless, which obviously isn't the case in real life. I might advise against public Festivus displays simply because a joke that gets taken out of context and spread too thin sometimes ruins the humor ("all your base are belong to us," anyone?), but the fact remains that it would BE a joke. My favorite line from the conversation on the show was when the Friend of Fox essentially said, "I support free speech, but do you have to do it on December 25th?" Yes, because Christmas is a time for peace on Earth, joy to all mankind, and suppression of First Amendment rights. :P And O'Reilly also had to bring up his favorite point about how the combined display would be hard to explain to kids. He's said the same thing about sex changes, when I don't really see what would be difficult for a child to grasp about that. "That person was a man, and is now a woman" would pretty much cover it, wouldn't it?