What is this new right to never be offended? Part II
Sorry this time of year really raises my ‘irked’ factor when it comes to Political Correctness.
Let’s consider again the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
First, I am fully aware that Congress has not made any laws prohibiting religion, etc. However, laws or no laws, our First Amendment is being trampled somewhat, and we need to be reminded of some facets of this amendment.
While the United States has no ‘established’ religion (contrary to what some people want to make us believe – there is NO ‘national religion’, thankfully), we have the right to the “free exercise thereof” of our preferred religion, or lack thereof. It doesn’t matter if that belief is Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Wicca, etc., or from aliens in outer space. We have the right to freely exercise our belief.
So I have to wonder then why athiests would love nothing more than to see all mention of religion and religious expression censored to the point that they never, ever have to hear about it, see it, etc.? Granted, it is their right, but their right would then be censorship on the rights of others. Why do other faiths want any outward expression of Christianity hidden and censored, while at the same time demanding theirs be openly expressed and represented, or that they be allowed the time for their holy days and/or prayer times? Why not include all? THAT to me would be the more PC thing to do. Except then, I guess, the athiests would be offended. Geeeeze talk about rocks and hard places. For the record, I was raised Catholic. I have considered myself somewhat agnostic for more than 35 years now, and lean more towards the so-called Pagan practices than anything else.
My real problem with all this PC stuff at this time of year is the fact that while Christmas is generally associated as a Christian Holy Day (no, I’m not even going to get into what this time of year was long before Christians took it over); it is also a secular holiday that everyone can and most do, celebrate. It has become MORE of a secular holiday over the past century. It is a time of peace and good will. At least that is what I always feel an abundance of at this time of the year.
That Christmas has become so commercialized is proof of just how secular a holiday it really is. Most people, I believe, view Christmas more as a ‘tradition’ than a religious holy day. It is celebrated around the world, in every country. I know plenty of Jewish people, Muslims and athiests, who also celebrate it, because of the joyfulness of the season, and because it really is a worldwide tradition. And it is a tradition that stems all the way back to times before organized religions existed.
And don’t you just hate it when they start advertising and decorating the stores before Thanksgiving………..and sometimes even before Halloween? That’s just overkill in my book. I loved the 1 month long decorations, anything before Thanksgiving and I want to scream!
So forgive me if I get offended by people actually finding it offensive to be wished a “Merry Christmas”, or by the sight of a Christmas Tree all decorated with festive lights and ornaments. Forgive me if I get offended that you find offense over a celebration that is not religious in its origins to begin with. Why don’t these people who are so offended by this, try to get their favorite decorations included also? Why do they not just offer up their own greeting in response? WHY take offense? Since when is wishing someone good cheer offensive?
Better yet, WHY should I have to NOT enjoy my tradition as openly as I have since my birth, just because some don’t like it?
Should I wish you a Merry Christmas, don’t take offense, and if you do, kindly remember that this is MY tradition and I do have the right to express it, just as you do yours, and I am not being insulting when I share my good feelings with you.
I do believe if people would just go back to being tolerant again, we wouldn’t need all this censorship. Sometimes I really do miss the good old days, when no one took offense when another practiced their traditions, cultures, beliefs. We used to share them with each other back then.
These days I find myself offended that I cannot openly express myself for fear of offending another.
At what point am I allowed to not be offended?