After several years of cowering in fear of the wrath of loudmouths of the politically correct movement, by using "Happy Holidays

!" or "Season's Greetings!", several large businesses have emerged from the darkness with the message "Merry Christmas!" this year. Were they wrong? Are they leading the "fight back" by Christians against so many minorities that would accuse them of prejudice? First of all, if someone wished you a "good day" but it was evening, would you be insulted, accusing them of trying to turning nighttime into daytime as if the two were not obviously distinct? More likely you would say "Thanks" or just ignore a remark thinking the person may be time-challenged. The politically correct movement was ostensibly an uprising of sensible and sensitive people against those who would offend minorities. On the surface, this sounds acceptable. However, we have laws that make real prejudice and racism indictable offences. Political correctness was itself a form of prejudice used by supremely selfrighteous people, supposedly against those who acted prejudicially. In other words, political correctness was a political weapon. In politics of the sordid kind today, a commonly used tactic is to accuse your opponent of committing the same kind of offence as you commit yourself. This tactic is often used before the opponent can accuse you of the same offence. The thinking is that the first party that reaches the public with an accusation must be innocent, thus the other must obviously be guilty, even if there is no evidence in play. Christians (especially) who did not want to be accused of prejudice against those of other religions (who wanted to hide it from public scrutiny), attacked those who were not "like them" or "with them" for acts of prejudice for which the supposedly offended person or party had never taken offence. In a court, a prosecutor must prove a case against a defendant on a charge of uttering prejudicial statements or racism. However, in the "court of public opinion," someone who accuses another of political incorrectness is not required to prove anything, even to give evidence that a supposedly aggrieved party would ever have taken offence. Those who use political correctness as a weapon against others are themselves prejudiced. It's one way to put down "others" (those who are not "like us") without breaking the law. If someone wished you "Eid mubarak!" how would you react? Would you claim that person was prejudicial against you because you are not Muslim? Not likely. Wishing someone who is not a Christian "Merry Christmas!" has the same effect. The wish "Merry Christmas!" is a wish for good tidings for the season. Technically, Jews and Muslims should not take offence at the greeting anyway because both of their religions recognize Jesus of Nazareth as a very important prophet. Not only are Jesus and Mary mentioned positively in the Quran, but nothing in Islam's holy book denies the status of Jesus as the Son of God. Islam states only that behaviour dictated by God through the last prophet should be followed ahead of the words of Jesus, as Mohammed brought the word of God more recently than Jesus. It's simply a matter of timing.

Just because someone doesn't celebrate the birth of one man or god-man on December 25 doesn't mean that the person would or should be offended by being wished good tidings for the season. Good wishes should be accepted for what they are, good wishes. They should not be twisted into something perverse that Jesus would never have wanted anyone to feel, think or say. If Jesus means more to me and less to you, or the other way around, then so be it. My good wishes are still valid. My effort to wish someone well should not be denigrated by those who secretly have prejudice in their hearts. And so, whether or not you celebrate the birth of Jesus, and no matter what Jesus means to me, I wish you Merry Christmas! May you feel the joy that is intended by that great wish. Bill Allin 'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' a book about real and inexpensive solutions to community problems most people think are inevitable evils of modern society. They aren't. We just have to look in the right place. Learn more at http://billallin.com/ Contact author Bill Allin at turningitaround@sympatico.ca