The idea of “Happy Holidays” being a forced and politically correct replacement for “Merry Christmas” is sad to those of us who were raised on Christmas spirit and who know a bit about history. It’s funny how it is okay to say “Happy Chanukah” and “Have a wonderful Kwanzaa” or “May your Ramadan be delightful!” — but if you say “Have yourself a merry little Christmas” you’re placing yourself in the middle of a political firestorm that doesn’t mind who gets burned in the process.
Wishing each other “Happy Holidays” has been a perfectly acceptable Christian greeting since the Civil War and the even more generic “Season’s Greetings” has been used as a Christian salutation since
When I was a youngster and we visited my mother’s second husband’s mother in Oklahoma for the holidays, I was repeatedly instructed during the 12 hour drive down to visit her in the middle of nowhere to “Never spell ‘Christmas’ as ‘Xmas’ with her because ‘You can’t take the Christ out of Christmas.'” Since I was six years old at the time I found that hourly admonishment confusing because I had never met the woman before and I was barely able to write anything anyway.
Later I learned the “X” in “Xmas” actually does represent “Christ” — so spelling “Christmas” as “Xmas” is completely appropriate because in the original Greek the “X” (pronounced “chai”) in “Xmas” translates into Christ’s name.
For over 1,000 years “Xmas” has meant “Christmas” and the fact that people today without an awareness or the perspective of history — but with a political bent and with a view of culture as contingent — are getting bent out of shape over concepts and greetings that have a pre-existing life beyond their current angry agenda.