Did you hear my eyes roll? Because they did.
This whole "war on Christmas" nonsense is simply ridiculous. I mean, I got reprimanded for saying "Merry Christmas" when I worked at Noodle Kidoodle... but since the company was owned by a bunch of Jewish guys... I can understand why they want "Happy Holidays" used.
Now, let me preface this with: Christmas is my FAVORITE holiday. Seriously. I decorate that tree. I wear the gaudy Christmas sweaters. I play Christmas tunes in my office. I love the holiday.
But I do not celebrate the Jesus being born part of it. I celebrate the "peace on earth, good will to men (mankind)" part.
Why? Because Jesus wasn't born during the winter. in the whole birth story, there are shepherds out with the flocks. That only happens during lambing season, in the spring. Plus the Romans celebrated Saturnalia during that time. There wouldn't be a census during a 2 week party! I have heard it suggested (and I'm inclined to believe it) that early Christians put their holidays on the dates that already had similar celebrations. The Winter Solstice is around that time, and the whole birth after a time of darkness fits. I've even heard that Jesus/Mithras thing. All very interesting.
Can you celebrate the holiday without an ounce of religion? Absolutely. People have been doing it for years. We use it as a time to visit with the family, to celebrate tradition. Ending the year on a happy note and all that jazz.
There is no "war on Christmas." People just don't want to have to celebrate the religious part of it. There's no harm in it. If you want to celebrate the religious part, knock yourself out. I'll be respectful of you. Just be respectful of people that do not share your religious beliefs.
And when I say "Merry Christmas," I happen to mean: "Happy time of peace, family, and festivities."