Christmas can be a time of peace and good tidings, but not always. Not all greetings are ho-ho-ho. The Christmas holiday may give some people too much free time.
I was heading to the gym on Thursday-Christmas Eve-when someone swerved into my lane without signaling, causing me to jam on my brakes.
This usually means that the driver was on the phone-or texting-and almost missed his or her turn. Most days, this would lead to some retaliatory action on my part. I consider driving a contact sport.
It being Christmas Eve and all, I did not retaliate. I was trying to be that better person that Bill Murray described in the movie, Scrooged.
The point here being, as I described in my Christmas Blog, that I was grooving on the spirit of Christmas and wasn't going to let anyone interrupt the flow.
For some, though, Christmas wishes seem to stir up a big bowl of nasty. I've seen my share of hate mail, I just didn't expect to generate any by wishing everyone a merry Christmas.
I think that if I did a piece on the Tulip Time Festival in Holland, Michigan, I would still be under siege. Half a dozen idiots would be telling me that it's Obama's fault and another dozen or so would be decrying the most fun-to-hate groups in America, including, but not limited to Muslims, blacks, Jews and immigrants.
One lady, who I'd like to think was fat and ugly told me that I didn't have right to wish anyone a merry Christmas. She didn't say if that was because of my Judaism or because of my atheism, but she is part of the group that seem to think that they own Christmas.
Obviously, that's silly. Toys R Us used to own Christmas, now Amazon owns it.
A gentleman from Arizona, who may have been Sheriff Joe Arpaio bristled at the idea of radical Muslims getting into the holiday spirit.
Clearly, that was said in jest, but is it really such a bad idea?
The two most interesting comments came from an atheist and a Messianic Jew.
First thing you need to know about atheism is that it is no more of a religion than abstinence is a sexual position. It is simply a lack of belief in any kind of Being, Supreme, Divine or otherwise God-like.
Here in America, we don't behead people for such beliefs as they do in Saudi Arabia. Same intolerance, different consequences.
Anyone who says he's agnostic, by the way is a liar and a coward. Either you believe in God or you don't. Even the most hard line atheist would be converted if God sat in his car and made it rain inside the car, like George Burns did in Oh, God!
The last thing I want to say about atheists is that they can be as hypocritical as their Bible-thumping counter parts. They-atheists-like to complain about a world that crams Christianity down their throats at every turn-that part's true-but they use every opportunity to cram their atheistic views down everyone else's throats.
A guy named, Jim writes a blog called, An Atheist in Illinois, where he recently railed at people who poked fun at Star Wars. At least something is sacred to Jim.
The question, though is how can I, a Jew and an atheist to boot be accused of trying to foist Christianity upon people by wishing them a merry Christmas? The reasonable answer is that I can't.
The message from Ms. Messianic Jew was long, convoluted and unintelligible, which is what one might expect from this unique group.
I read a Facebook post from a Jew for Jesus whose name I recognized. In this particular post, this Jew-cum-Christian was taking the Pope to task for reassuring his flock that they would meet up with their departed pets in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Seemed like a nice gesture to me. Like when people tell mourners that their dearly departed are in a "better place."
I don't believe in a better place, but if I did I would have to say that you are lying about it.
How do you know where God is sending that person? For all you know, that person had the soul of an Adolph Hitler and is roasting on a spit while you're poking through a box of Dunkin' Donuts, spewing euphemisms and platitudes.
In any case, it's well within the purview of the Pope to set the tone for Catholics worldwide. He really doesn't need some fat Jewish girl from Northbrook, Illinois questioning his biblical authority.
This lady falls into the group of full-of-crap, holier-than-thou fanatics, which happens to include most of atheists I've met.
And now, if I can do so without offending anyone, I'd like to wish everyone who reads my stuff a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.
Everyone else is on their own.
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