An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
ONE MORE THING about Christmas. So far, I’ve complained about Black Friday sales, checkout-counter donations and slow delivery of online orders. Now for something positive.
I’m talking about the old Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holidays debate. I was sure that discussion was a thing of the past but, no, a new Research Co. survey shows “Happy Holidays” is gaining ground on “Merry Christmas.”
However, it hasn’t caught up to “Merry Christmas” yet so that’s the good news. But here’s what’s especially interesting about the poll — our preference between the two greetings is split along party lines.
If you tend to vote Conservative, you’re likely to favour “Merry Christmas.” If you’re a Liberal or a New Democrat, chances are pretty good you’re a “Happy Holidays” kind of person.
No explanation is given by the pollster but it seems obvious. Those in the middle and left are more likely to get all concerned about being politically correct; those on the right probably figure, “To hell with it, I’ve said ‘Merry Christmas’ my entire life and I’m not gonna change now!”
For once, I’m with the Conservatives. You wouldn’t expect Pierre Poilievre to wish someone “Happy Holidays!” Nope, he strikes me as a “Merry Christmas” guy. And Justin Trudeau — surely, he’s strictly “Happy Holidays” all the way.
But, wait, Trudeau doesn’t take any chances. In his annual message to Canadians, he always wishes us “Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.” And Poilievre? In Parliament the other day, he did exactly the same thing.
As for Jagmeet Singh, nobody’s sure because they’re too busy laughing at his suggestion in the House last week that he could some day be prime minister.
Christmas is no place for politics, anyway, and there are more important things to worry about than how we greet each other.
Such as, the fact the poll shows that 55 per cent of Canadians enjoy fruit cake, and most like Brussels sprouts.
I’m the Armchair Mayor, wishing Merry Christmas to all.
Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops, former TNRD director and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a recipient of the Jack Webster Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.