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[January 2008 newsletter]
From the LocSec: War on Christmas
by Travis Hardin
Originally published in the newsletter of North Alabama Mensa

Bill O’Reilly, Fox News commentator and moral exemplar to both Stephen Colbert and myself, has announced victory in the war on Christmas. A preponderance of people have been won over and are now greeting each other with "Merry Christmas" and not "Happy holidays." Powerful secular progressive legions had been spreading the latter phrase because they apparently thought it was a gesture of inclusion (Peace on earth, goodwill to all Jews, Christians, and non-believers alike). But traditionalists have been hearing the phrase as hissing and spitting – verbal projectiles fired toward the defenders of that holy but jolly December celebration begun so long ago, as this column pointed out last month.

Barnes & Noble did not surrender and continues to be on the secular "Happy holidays" side, but my hero, generous in victory, has advocated a truce with them because they sell his books.

St. Michael the Archangel Orthodox Church here in Huntsville will likely celebrate Christmas on January 7. I haven’t heard Mr. O’Reilly’s pronouncement on wishing "Merry Christmas" or "Happy holidays" on January 7th. But I think he would disapprove, and so I will classify them with the heathens, notwithstanding their claim to being the original church.

Speaking of television talk shows, one of our members, Doug Roth, successfully demonstrated a pocket-sized device that will turn off any television set. His is made from a kit and has four powerful infrared LEDs that can reach deep into space. Single-LED key chain versions are available on the Web and at Target on line as TV-B-Gone.

Your North Alabama Mensa nominating committee is now gearing up to seek officers and volunteers for the year beginning May 2008. If you want to serve in any way, large or small, please contact chair Doug Roth,, phone 882-6378, cell 683-5821, or contact committee members Bob and Barbara Ward. It would save the hard work of an election if we had one and only one candidate for each office. If there is serious competition, we will have an election. But your January call to the nominating committee may allow a solution acceptable to all. If you want to be LocSec, you can have it. But I am available if needed. If we are on time, the slate will appear in the February newsletter.

The beginning of each year is membership-renewal time. The cost is a hard pill to swallow for some. Consider using that Christmas money from Aunt Sue to renew. Consider renewing for two years at a time, halving your trouble. If Aunt Sue has been very generous, look into a lifetime membership. Our local group is widely recognized as having one of the highest renewal rates in the nation. The credit belongs to you, each member.


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Last updated April 2016