Pod people: Much ado, nothing new, Merry Christmas to you

Santa scored big in Texas schools this week. Free speech, meanwhile, ruled it a tie. And religion paced the sidelines waiting to be put in the game. The Lone Star state’s “Merry Christmas Law” guarantees the freedom for students, teachers and administrators to wish each other Merry Christmas or Happy Hanukkah. They can wear sweaters [Read More...]

Santa Claus is coming … to Texas schools

No more winter parties in Wichita Falls, nor holiday trees in Houston: Schoolchildren in the Lone Star State can now legally wish each other “Merry Christmas” without fear of legal prosecution. (Actually, the law passed this past summer. But it would have been silly for Santa to Ho-Ho-Ho his way into the state Legislature then [Read More...]

Are all Jews preparing for Thanksgivukkah the same way?

Many years ago, I worked at a newspaper — let’s leave the name out of this discussion — that ran a Hanukkah feature, with lots of art, about an exhibit of menorahs. The interesting wrinkle was that some of these menorahs were quite modern or even postmodern in design, including several that specifically violated ancient [Read More...]

WSJ: Hanukkah, oh Hanukkah, come light the ‘Menurkey’

To purists, Hanukkah, sometimes rendered Chanukah, is the red-headed stepchild of Jewish holy days: it’s not a liturgical event, per se, but it’s also, to borrow a phrase, “not chopped liver, either.” As Wikipedia summarizes it,  Hanukkah is “the rededication of the Holy Temple (the Second Temple) in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Greeks of the 2nd century BCE.” Significant? Yes. [Read More...]

Everything you know about Christmas is wrong

George just posted about an old story being rehashed for Christmas, which reminded me that the regular attempts to debunk Christianity around its holy days has become my favorite tradition. What would Christmas and Easter be like without a semi-blasphemous newsweekly magazine cover questioning some central tenet of the religion? All that to say that [Read More...]


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