This Year’s Christmas Culture War Panic

This Year’s Christmas Culture War Panic November 9, 2015

Behold! A Culture Warrior Battles the Great Apostasy and the Fiery Persecution!

Other Culture Warriors are getting on board with this, panicking and courageously scolding hapless baristas who can neither fight back against customer, nor change this utterly trivial policy. All across America, culture warriors who, just a couple of years ago were having hysterics about turning Christmas into Winter, are now letting the damned librul baristas know that conservative Americans with no real problems are not going to sit idly by and let the forces of godlessness remove the sacred snowflakes, reindeer and snowmen from our Starbucks Coffee Cups without a fight!

Result: Human Toothaches for Jesus with nothing better to do are making life hell for everybody by turning Christmas into a culture war weapon–again. Here is a recent note from a barista confronted by one of these embarrassing apostles for the gospel of Culture War:

“Hello Starbucks people. I need to rant about the fuss over the Starbucks red cups and a wonderful customer that made my day. I had a customer come in today and ask me why we had red cups. I said they were our new Christmas cups and she gave me an devilish smile and ordered her drink. Then she said “oh my name is Merry Christmas” and I said okay with a smile and wrote Merry Christmas on her cup. (Her real name was Marry and she was so proud that she was able to get me to write Merry Christmas on her cup, I would’ve wrote stupid head if she told me, its what we do ,write names on cups no matter what it is) She then proceeds to comment and tell me that I am a horrible person for working for a company that doesn’t believe in Christianity and that I should say something to my manager to tell corporate about the ‘stupid red cups.’ (I am a Christian and personally see nothing wrong with the red cups). Why does this red cups thing have to be so stupid?! Its a cup they will be gone in a couple months.”

When you do this kind of stuff, you are an excellent argument against the faith. Memorize today’s verse:

God’s Name is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you. – Romans 2:24

Oh, and by the way, a friend sends this along, taken in the past day or so:

Starbucks needs a new blend, super high in caffeine, called “Panic du Jour”–“For the Wingnut Culture Warrior in Your Life”

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  • Pete the Greek

    I thought this was going to be about how Home Depot and Lowes already had Christmas trees for sale before Halloween.

    • Ken

      Whoaa, Christmas trees? Please use the correct term, “Holiday Trees.” Good thing I stopped by today you could have offended someone.

      • wlinden

        You mean the trees where we gather to sing “We Wish You a Merry Holiday” and “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Holiday”?

      • Pete the Greek

        We could both be wrong. They might be Kwanza trees.

      • Alma Peregrina

        Holiday?! As in Holi(y)-day? Now I’m offended!

        • Ken

          I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to you and to anyone else I may have offended by not remaining religiously neutral in my comments. I would like to especially apologize to any trees that have read this post and were led to believe that I endorse the use of trees for the upcoming season that I won’t specify here.

  • wlinden

    Meanwhile, there are hysterics about how Simons malls “removed” the Christmas tree from their Santa reception because unspecified people were “offended” by “symbols of Christmas”. No explanation of why these Christmas-haters are offended by a tree, but not by Santa Claus. It turns out there IS a Christmas tree at the mall, but the doomsayers go on complaining that the sacred tree is not close enough to St. Nicholas.
    (Hmm…. Clement Clarke Moore’s poem, the major source for our cultural “Santa Claus”, does not mention him carrying a tree in his sleigh.)

    Defend St. Nicholas, punch a heretic today!

    • wlinden

      And, oh yes, assertions that it is the Moosulums who object to Christmas, without presenting any evidence of real Moslems making any real complaints.. Never mind the ones who actually celebrate the birth of the prophet Isa.

    • Keary McHugh

      I am mostly offended on aesthetic grounds. That weird piece of the star ship Enterprise circa 1987 that they are calling a glacier is, in a word, ugly.

    • Right? This too. I’ve had to explain to my mom that the big offense is that their photo shoot setup is so utterly tacky and tasteless.

  • Mariana Baca

    Is red not the liturgical color of Christmas? It is definitely not the color of Winter, Yule, Hannukah or Kwanzaa.

    • Dan F.

      Advent is Purple (anticipation), Christmas is White. Red is for Pentacost and Good Friday IIRC

      • Mariana Baca

        Ug, you are right, no red because it is not a holy spirit or martyr holy day. My point stands, though — it is a color associated with Christmas, not any other holiday in the “season”

      • Rebecca Fuentes

        I demand a WHITE Christmas cup, by golly.

    • wlinden

      That settles it! We boycott Starbucks until they agree to change their cups to Advent purple!

  • Dan F.

    As an aside, why are we still giving Starbucks any business after Howard Shultz told us to take our business elsewhere?

  • Robert West

    The man in the video, and his little story, has nothing to do with the reality of an increasingly anti-christian culture. D.D. is better and cheaper anyhoo.

    • Dave G.

      Whenever I see examples of the culture war, or the anit-culture war, I’m reminded that it isn’t easy to strike a balance between overreacting, and under-reacting to things. My guess is both extremes are not wise.

      • Robert West


  • Liam

    Starbucks sued a monastery on Vashon Island because Christian monks who support their monastery by selling coffee had the chutzpah to use the word “Christmas” which Starbucks had trademarked.

    • kenofken

      I always knew in my heart of hearts that Dumbledore didn’t really die. Give em hell, professor! 🙂

    • Sally Stewart

      That was in 1998 & Starbucks did not go through with it due to the public outcry….they let it stay in the public domain…unfortunately this is what corporations do to protect their turf which is one of the reasons I no longer donate to Susan G. Komen—-and isn’t it wonderful we can now sing “Happy Birthday” without fear of lawsuit!

  • Heather

    Usually the morning news is relatively devoid of stories that make me want to swear at the television (when it happens, the words “subway” and “outage” are generally involved), but I found myself swearing at the television this morning over this. There is real persecution of Christians in the world. This doesn’t even count as the “taking the nativity scene out of city hall and moving it to private property” level of faux-persecution. Give me a break.

    It almost smells like some kind of fake controversy viral marketing campaign, but Starbucks doesn’t need to bother with that. All they need to do is quietly mention “oh yeah, the peppermint lattes are back as of xyz date” and they’ll be lining up around the block to be the first to get them. (I have friends who work at Starbucks and that is literally how it goes.)

    • Ken

      It’s fascinating to see what stories get picked up by the media. The story seems to have legs because so many of the left wing media is going bonkers over this. Huffington Post and the Washington Post are writing editorials and stories about this. If they asked the average Christian they would think it’s as stupid of a story as they think it is instead they are writing stories about this without interviewing any of the people that are supposed to be offended. We live in a strange world.
      I’m personally offended by their terrible, overpriced coffee.

      • etme

        “Terrible” is the keyword.

  • Stu

    I think we are long past worrying about what Starbucks thinks about anything.

  • virago

    This is really silly and kinda stupid BUT not as stupid as Yale is/was about Halloween. Stupid on steroids.

  • kenofken

    If I were Starbucks CEO, I’d give them the perfect Christmas gift: Cups depicting Santa Claus in flight with a rainbow flag on his rig. The other side of the cup would have a little cartoon of Obama wishing drinkers “Happy Holidays” in Arabic script!

    • Joseph

      Well, hey now… I think that the whole red cup thing is retarded, but I wouldn’t buy a cup with Obama on it just like I wouldn’t buy a cup with a picture of ‘Dubya’ on it. So, you’d be asking me to boycott Starbucks as well. I have this thing where I don’t like to buy images of any crooked, fiendishly bloodthirsty presidents.

      • kenofken

        I never said poking culture warriors in the eye with a stick would be a good business decision, only that it would be fun. I like the bloodthirsty presidents idea for ornaments. A collectible set of figurines of recent U.S. presidents, but also Assad, Putin etc. – all of the others who likely got coal in their stocking for human rights violations in the past year. Each one would be wearing a different hideous Christmas sweater.

        • Joseph

          Why not just have a picture of a steaming pile of dog crap on the side of the cup. If we’re going for *best bad business decision* here… actually, that might sell… in America.

  • Rebecca Fuentes

    We don’t have a Starbucks in the county, and I’d support our local coffee shop/bookstore anyway, but everyone I know thinks this is a silly thing to fuss about. I should note that most people I know are on the Tea party or Libertarian end of things, politically.

    • Ken

      You can have some of our Starbucks stores. We have more than we need.

      • Rebecca Fuentes

        No thanks. It was kind of you to offer. 🙂

  • JustAnotherVoice

    Thank you for being one of the few willing to call out the likes of Josh Feuerstein.

  • Mary E.

    From what I can tell, the outcry against the Starbuck’s cups seems to consist of the evangelist’s YouTube rant and followup rants, the customer described by Starbuck’s barista, and a handful of social media posts on Twitter and elsewhere. If there is a huge groundswell of complaints by Christians about the red cups, they have passed me right by. I haven’t come across one complaining Christian yet in any of my social-media sites, but I have come across plenty of complaints ABOUT the reported complaints. Life on the ‘Net . . .

    • Okay, I got one comment on FB today from a nutty friend who wrote, “Vote with your dollars no target,starbucks,Disney and the rest of the facists.” And my elderly mother was somewhat nonplussed by the whole thing– if it was covered at all negatively on Fox News, then she’ll be bothered because she’s told it should bother her…

      • Mary E.

        I’ve received none from people upset about the cups but I had at least five posts and forwarded memes yesterday criticizing/mocking the people who complained about the cups.

  • Joseph

    American Protestants typically have this problem. It’s the same thing on Facebook with the ‘If you don’t share this picture of the George Michaels Jesus, you don’t love Jesus’ posts; that whole ‘I’m more Christian than you, watch how i agitate *the enemy!’.
    The guy who started this whole ‘yo, check me out getting Starbucks to write Christmas on my red cup… nyuk nyuk nyuk’ movement is a dope. But, he’s gonna get a ton of followers. I guess he’s starting up a Calvary Chapel somewhere?

    • Dave G.

      Well, heh, that’s certainly a problem most people don’t associate with Catholics. I’ll give you that.

  • Dave G.

    My wife said it best last night. On its own, it’s no big deal. But taken as a whole, and given what we’ve seen developing over the last few years, it shows what believers can expect. I notice that some folks I’ve met from other countries, where one’s faith can mean freedom or imprisonment, aren’t quite so quick to dismiss this sort of thing. And given that most of us Westerners don’t know the meaning of the word oppression, I’m inclined to pay attention to those who know it first hand.

  • wlinden

    What is this business about “wingnuts”? I would not want to fly in a plane where the wings did not have nuts. Or do you just think that “righwingnut” is one word, since there are no left-wing nuts?

  • wlinden

    And to show how Starbucks is “taking Christ out of Christmas” by doing this, here is a display of their oh-so-Christian designs from past years.

    • Rosemarie


      What about the past years when they only showed ice skaters or a snowman? How are these symbols of Christmas? You mean no one ice skates in January or builds a snowman in February? Why no outrage in past years at Starbucks for featuring generic winter images rather than explicitly Christmas ones? I’m not saying there should have been, just wondering why the outrage now. Those secular images are okey-dokey, but a plain red cup is an affront against the Christ Child? Give me a break.

  • Andy

    From my oldest daughter – bless he:There are lots of theses types of pictures going around, this happens to be a cause I feel strongly about, but there are other important causes with similar messages. Let’s focus our intentions on the things that will change people’s lives this holiday season; making sure every child has a forever family, that every person has a warm home of their own, and that no one goes to bed hungry, wondering where their next meal will come from. Our outrage at the holidays shouldn’t be about what we perceive to be symbols of the season on our coffee cups but about our self-centeredness that causes us to look at what we don’t have and not be grateful for what we do while others go without. End rant.

  • Pete the Greek

    I’m usually not the conspiratorial type, but…

    Like most of you, I don’t bother writing about, no reading about Starbucks and their overpriced, burnt coffee. However, now I am. Now are you. So is Mark.

    I’ll wager Starbucks is going to stoke this for all it’s worth. You can’t BUY advertising this good. It’s genius. I can’t believe I didn’t think of it.

    • Joseph

      Yep… LOL. That idiot in the video probably works for Starbucks. Think about it, he just convinced a bunch of people who otherwise wouldn’t have purchased a Starbucks coffee to go in there just so they can get their jollies having them write Merry Christmas on the side and shout, ‘Oh yeah, well, Merry F*cking Christmas, you jerks’… genius! Make those poor sods look stupid, like walking contradictions, *and* make money for Starbucks all at the same time!

  • Stephen

    Good laugh article….we take too many things so seriously when they are not…worried about someone stating Merry Christmas or Happy Holiday….not seeing the generous, uplifting qualities of the words….seeking something wrong…never considering good will. Perceptions and beliefs come in all flavors….enjoy them the way you want, don’t worry… doesn’t hurt. Funny, Christmas was taken away from me years ago…when I had to celebrate it before Halloween, found out Christ was not born Christmas eve, and it was not Santa bringing me alllll those presents. Somehow it just does not feel the same….ha, now I have to worry about a red cup, Satan’s colors! Ha….enjoy each day….live in good will.

  • Maggie Goff

    I don’t care for their coffee and very seldom buy any, but I have to say that they do treat their employees well. Here’s the latest benefit that they have:

  • Dodger Dickens

    Starbucks shilled hard for homosexual marriage and gives directly to Murder, Inc. Is that a good enough reason to boycott them, or do we have to shove one more gingerbread latte down our gullets? Seriously, if you can’t find a cup of coffee without patronizing these douchebags, you have a problem.

  • Rosemarie


    This one is so ridiculous even Bill O’Reilly repudiated it.

  • Rosemarie


    One could even interpret this in reverse. Red is a color often associated with Jesus. How often is he depicted in art wearing red? His Sacred Heart is red. His Precious Blood is red. Some Bibles print His words in red. It is the liturgical color for feasts associated with His Passion, like Palm Sunday and Good Friday.

    More specific to Christmas, are we not told that red holly berries and poinsettias remind us of the Blood of Jesus? So red as a Christmas color cannot be a denial of Jesus. If anything, it is a remote acknowledgment of Him, regardless of what Starbucks may or may not intend.

  • Jared B.

    My reaction to the whole red cup thing:
    “Um, weren’t we all supposed to have already been boycotting Starbucks because of their fanatical opposition to traditional marriage? Like, since early 2012?”

    Boycotts have a short attention span.

  • Todd Voss

    Agree Mark! Actually if I bother to think about the cups
    at all, I do think I prefer the prior years.
    Not because I think “what does Starbucks have against Christmas” but “What does Starbucks have against fun”? Snowflakes and Reindeer are fun. J The
    Plain red cups are boring. Sort of like
    International style architecture. I suppose when they ask your name you could say: “I’m Boring”.
    Except I hate to jerk around the barrista. Happy Holidays everyone!