Friday, December 08, 2006

A Note on Saying "Merry Christmas" (or "why can't we all just get along?")

I had a conversation with a co-worker today about the use of the term "Happy Holidays" and how it's almost politically incorrect for people to use the term "Merry Christmas" for fear of offending those who don't celebrate it. She mentioned that she thinks "it's" been decided by the powers that be at work that no one should say "merry Christmas" any more, that "they" have decided that's excluding to some... I certainly have not heard this from anyone, and I don't know who "they" are (the bosses at the top of the work food chain? HR? Communications?) but here's my two cents on the whole issue...

Part of what makes Canada so special is that I, as a Muslim, can remember that you, a Christian, have a big holiday coming up (and really, how could I miss it, there are lights on every house, decorations in every store, and Santa corners in every mall) and tell you Merry Christmas, the same way you can tell me (as some of my co-workers and friends did this year, and have in many years past) Happy Ramadan, or Happy Eid, the same way that we can tell our Jewish friends Happy Hanukkah, and the list goes on and on...
My being Muslim does not preclude that I refuse to recognize that you have a joyous occasion coming up, I would have to be blind to miss it. Respecting multiple religions and traditions is not disrespectful to any one of them. So please, don't worry that you're going to offend me by saying Merry Christmas around me. Say it all you want. I'll be happy for you that you're happy; and by the way, Muslims have a holiday coming up soon too: we're celebrating "Eid Ul-Adha", or "the Celebration of the Sacrifice" on December 31st this year. If you wanna tell me happy Eid, I'll be happy to hear it.

1 comment:

- K said...

Hi Noha,

I'm okay with wishing people a Merry Christmas too. "Respecting multiple religions and traditions is not disrespectful to any one of them" sums up why better than I can, so I guess I'll just say I agree. :)

Thanks for linking to my blog by the way, and for the thoughts and photos.

Hope to see more posts, and happy (way) early Eid. :)