Monday, November 14, 2005

Apologize For the Truth

Wal-Mart is the world's largest retailer, I'm told. Lots of people hate Wal-Mart for lots of different reasons. The bigger you are, after all, the more enemies you're gonna have.

But Wal-Mart couldn't have gotten as big as it is without somebody having some brains, now, could it? I mean, Wal-Mart didn't just appear out of nowhere. People -- thinking people -- actually had to put their heads together and come up with plans and policies and practices that allowed this retail giant to become the behemoth it has become.

That's why this Christmas story fiasco has me crunching gravel between my teeth. Wal-Mart has offended the Catholic League. With the truth.

Day One: WAL-MART BANS CHRISTMAS: BOYCOTT LAUNCHED

Seems simple enough. Ban Christmas? Ban Wal-Mart!

But that's not really what the story is about. The real story is that some woman complained that Wal-Mart was avoiding the term "Merry Christmas" and using "Happy Holidays" instead. Being inclusive. After all, only Christians (and not all of them, at that) celebrate Christmas -- but this is also the time of year for Kwanzaa, Chanukkah, Yule -- probably a few others, as well. Almost every culture in history that had seasons had a mid-winter festival of some kind, if only to relieve the boredome of endless cold and dark. Not all of them are religious festivals. And, truth be known, it shouldn't be a Christian religious festival, either. Yeshua bar Yusef ha Notzri was born in the late spring.

Now, along comes a rather knowledgeable chap named Kirby. Note that I said "knowledgeable." I didn't say "tactful." And that was his problem. He e-mailed a reply to the upset woman:

“Walmart is a world wide organization and must remain conscious of this. The majority of the world still has different practices other than ‘christmas’ which is an ancient tradition that has its roots in Siberian shamanism. The colors associated with ‘christmas’ red and white are actually a representation of of the aminita mascera mushroom. Santa is also borrowed from the Caucuses, mistletoe from the Celts, yule log from the Goths, the time from the Visigoth and the tree from the worship of Baal. It is a wide wide world.”

Every word of it true. *sigh* I guess the Catholic League doesn't like the truth, because:

Day Two: WAL-MART HAS BEEN PUT ON NOTICE

The Catholic League is about to go to war, and Wal-Mart is the enemy.

The Catholic League wants "...a withdrawal of its insane statement regarding the origins of Christmas ..."

Problem is, that statement wasn't insane. It was absolutley correct. It wasn't tactful, but it was correct.

The Catholic League also added in its message to Wal-Mart: ‘Now that Wal-Mart is standing by its position, I hope you’re ready for our next move. Don’t forget, we have the next six weeks to pull out all the stops, and we will.’ And on we go to...

Day Three: WAL-MART CAVES; BOYCOTT ENDS

The spokesman for Wal-Mart surrendered without a shot being fired. Well, actually, there was one shot -- Kirby got fired.

And the Catholic League is happy: "...We only trigger boycotts when we’ve been grossly offended.

“This is a sweet victory for the Catholic League, Christians in general, and people of all faiths. And it means that Wal-Mart can now enter the Christmas season without this cloud hanging over it.”

Not quite, Bub. You've been grossly offended by the truth and you went to war over it. You got somebody fired from his job over your "offense." Since you're Catholic, I hope you take this little item into the confessional with you...would this be a venal sin or a mortal sin, to take something from somebody that was not yours to take, and for no good reason? More like revenge, wasn't it? And revenge for the truth, no less.

It may be a "sweet" victory for you, and maybe for a lot of Christians -- but not all, by any stretch of your rich imagination -- but people of all faiths?

What "all faiths" are you talking about? Who else celebrates Christmas?

And is that cloud now not hanging over Wal-Mart? or Christmas?

Do you not see the cloud hanging over your own head?

Flags, Flax, Fodder, and Fuel

6 Comments:

Blogger Rick Barnes said...

well done. Wal-Mart is just that a wall that seems impossible to crack. Lets get a few million picking at its foundation.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005 6:03:00 PM  
Blogger DazzlinDino said...

Here's my problem with the whole idea behind Christmas. The holiday is the for the birth of christ, and has been commercialised to the max by society. That being said, and myself not being a very religious guy, why the hell should someone get it for a holiday if they do not believe in the whole concept? Such as Muslims or JWs', they don't believe in it, but they're sure there to take the stat holiday pay....

Tuesday, November 15, 2005 7:36:00 PM  
Blogger Chimera said...

Rick, I'm actually not usually a Wal-Mart basher. I shop there because at the moment, it's affordable. My point was that here's this behemoth (I like that word) of a retail giant, and it took them two whole days to surrender -- without a fight -- to a bunch of little old ladies that even piss of my Catholic mother-in-law! And all over who "owns" Christmas! And how it got started (and I say again, Kirby got it right).

What a bunch of wimps...

Tuesday, November 15, 2005 11:52:00 PM  
Blogger Chimera said...

Dazz -- why would a non-Christian (or, as you point out, a JW) benefit from Christmas as a holiday?

Ask the government. They are the guys who decide the stat holidays. These being banking holidays, they're not exactly game pieces you can move around on a board, or arrange to suit your own calendar.

Having said that, I have had some experience with "swapping" stats while I worked for different companies. You'd have to check your provincial labor standards act to see if you can do this:

Some industries never get to take any down-time -- cops, firemen, security, the military. If they have to work a stat, they get paid time-and-a-half-plus-time (or, depending on where you are, time plus a day in lieu). I used to volunteer to work Christmas and Easter, and I'd take my own sabbats as days in lieu. Worked great for everyone.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005 12:01:00 AM  
Blogger Paula said...

Hey just wanted to leave my opinion on the whole Wal-mart matter. First let me say that I don't claim any religion, but do believe in a higher power and celebrate Christmas season becasue...well, becasue I have kids and they love presents and I love presents. Wal-mart isn't the only place where Christmas is being taken away from the wording, but I don't see these bible beating, I just got you fired before the Christmas holidays up in arms to the school boards or government over the fact that the Christmas holdidays are now referred to as the "Winter Holiday Vacation". Why is it that the people who wish to protest or be "offended" do so with miniscule retarded stuff? Like the blondes I saw on the news the other day boycotting a shop because they sold t-shirts that sported dumb blonde jokes and cartoons. Funny how most of them looked like dyed blondes. I am a original true blonde and I think they are hilarious. CAN"T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005 10:43:00 AM  
Blogger Chimera said...

Paula, if we all "just got along," the world would be a very boring place!

That was the joke.

The truth is, it's not in human nature to "get along" with other humans whose ideas or lifestyles differ from your own. Most of us are pretty selective about which things make us go to war on a personal level. Groups like the Catholic League take courage from the "safety in numbers" adage, and show their war feathers more readily.

And isn't it funny how groups like this will wage war on the stupidest things? Being offended is now a reason to get someone fired; someone you don't know, and, more likely, someone you don't want to know. Hurt feelings now justify everything.

That's Political Correctness for you.

Blonde jokes? I know blondes who write blonde jokes! And then there's my cousin Nat, who is a blonde joke... But that's another post.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005 11:39:00 AM  

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