This week's "O'Ryan Factor", Ryan Anderson sheds some light on The Dark Side of The Holidays.


“Holiday Dark Side,” by Ryan Anderson

O'Ryan FactorDecember 4th, 2004

Christmas is, for most, the best time of the year. It's a time of laughter. It's a time of joy. Family and friends gather around for good time. However, there are things that bother me about it. Where to begin:





    "Christmas, some of my older readers may recall, was once a religious holiday. Not in this movie. Not a single crucifix, not a single creche, not a single mention of the J-name. It's not that I want "Christmas with the Kranks" to get all religious, but that I think it's secular as a copout, to avoid any implication of religious intolerance. No matter what your beliefs or lack of them, you can celebrate Christmas in this neighborhood, because it's not about beliefs, it's about a shopping season." - Roger Ebert


    That's from Ebert's review of 'Christmas with the Kranks'. He couldn't be more true. Christmas, as we know it, is disappearing. Christmas is the celebration of Santa coming. It's a celebration of materialism. What? Jesus was born? Messiah? What's that all about? No. Christmas is now about waffle irons and Tickle-me Elmo's. Christmas is about opening the biggest presents first and complaining if that golf club you wanted isn't there. That has to stop.

Made-for-TV movies:

Once in a lifetime a season comes a long that inspires dozens of horrible films about guys believing they're Santa or some tragedy with a lesson. Not that they're bad in small levels, but massive doses prove fatal. Really, I don't want to see a story about a reindeer in a city. No interest. Maybe it's a gene inside of me. But these films are annoying. If I'm wrong...sue me...but I hate them. Classics, however, such as "Rudolph" and "Frosty the Snowman" are favorable in my humble opinion.

Other Holidays:

I'm sorry. I know this is evil and I'll be criticized...but what's the deal with Kwanza? Yeah I'm a bad person...but I don't get it. Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus. Hanukkah celebrates the miracle of the oil lasting as long as it did, and though I'm not Jewish I recognize that as a miracle. Kwanza.....what is that? Okay Maybe I'm just confused. I believe Kwanza does bring African American families together and is a good thing...but what's wrong with Christmas? Winter Solstice is the same way to me. I know it's an alternative for secularists...but is it a holiday? I don't want to offend, the point is, I don't see why any time the holidays are celebrated in public, it needs to include everything that might qualify as a holiday (Winter Solstice).

The Food Crisis:

    In a country that already has enough problems concerning weight, we don't need Christmas feasts. We're a fat nation. Christmas makes people eat. Sweets and fats are everywhere. If there's a holiday animals probably don't like: it's Christmas. Oftentimes, food items go on sale. Not a good thing. When you see someone you can tell if a big dinner with family is helping them or hurting them physically. That's not meant to be offensive, but maybe it's a slight drawback to the holidays.


Don’t get me wrong, I love my family. However, nearly every year at Christmas there’s one subject that continues to appear no matter what: politics. Not good. It’s as if commentators from the FOX news channel and CNN were dining at the same restaurant. It’s a mess. Our prayer is more like a preparation. There’ll be some small talk about things we actually agree on (everyone talks about gay marriage and how it’s bad for a while)…then someone might bring up the Bush tax cuts or something…then it’s war. But we should be bonding. If your family’s like mine…this is a drawback as well.

The Dark Side of Christmas:

Little know that Christmas, the most wonderful time of the year, has the largest suicide rate. From what began as a time of charity and giving to the needy, but increasingly less is given to them each year. Every passing year, it seems more people are left alone. This is driven by the materialism as referred to above. Can this really be good? Passing up the Salvation Army bucket? Is this what we thinks helping America? It's not. None of it.

So I guess what I want you to take away from this is that there are flaws with the holiday season. More importantly, they’re flaws we can fix little by little. Whether it’s giving money to charity or putting up a nativity scene instead of a plastic reindeer. Whatever works. Try to imagine Christmas in the 30’s or 40’s… you think they had the problems we have today? Think again. So as we approach the holidays…let’s make Christmas how it used to be…wholesome.



Read Ryan Anderson's Blog: The Anderson Factor.



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