The Atlantic

Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holidays, Round 2,016

The perennial debate gets a new coat of cheer from Donald Trump.
Source: Pawel Kopczynski/Reuters

The ruckus around whether to say “Merry Christmas” or “Happy holidays” usually starts at the end of Thanksgiving, as retailers take down the turkeys with pilgrim hats and hang wreaths instead. Most of the time, it’s confined to the letters section of the local newspaper.

But Christmas came early this year. President-elect Donald Trump made his position clear in June, and many times since: “Boy, do I mean it—we’re going to be saying ‘Merry Christmas,’ ” he told a group of evangelical leaders in New York.  (He made a similar promise last

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