It has been a bit of a habit lately to grumble and mumble about the "war on Christmas," as some commentators have labelled it.
Maybe it's just me, but I'm not feeling the tension this year.
Yes, yes, the bulk of my corporate e-cards still just happily pronounce season's greetings and something about being happy over the holidays but dare not speak their name. But I long ago gave up on the idea that the corporate world would be anything other than excruciatingly politically correct in these matters—influenced as they are by marketing departments. And I concede that I may have missed something irritating because to the extent that I still have any influence in Christmas shopping I exercised it a few weeks ago. (I don't "scout" shop for things others might want to buy me because I am opposed to receiving gifts anymore.)
But I am inspired this year mostly by Fazil, who is Muslim and from Pakistan and has given me a lift to the airport once every couple of weeks for the past three years. Last week, when he dropped me off, he didn't just wish me a Merry Christmas, he made sure I would pass his greetings along to my entire family. The same thing had happened a couple of days earlier when I had spent the afternoon with a couple of professional acquaintances who are Sikh. And on Friday during a phone chat with a Jewish friend.
I'm not sure why they were so nice to me but I think it's because they know me well enough to know that what Christmas stands for means something to me and that they are people who, like me, believe that there is still meaning in the world.
Then I saw this, a Christmas greeting from the premier of Saskatchewan—one of Canada's most well-respected leaders.
Wall spoke so comfortably of Christmas and its meaning that I forgot all about the "war." God bless you, him, Fazil, Manmeet, and Dave for bringing it home to me.