Arizona governor vetoes SB 1062. Yay! Something good for our state and country.
Dear gentiles, when you say Merry Christmas and I say Happy Chanukah, don’t cheapen it by saying, “Oh yeah, and Happy Kwanzaa or whatever.”
First, there is the matter of sincerity. Chanukah is a Jewish holiday that predates Christmas. Kwanzaa is an African-American holiday that started in 1966. I don’t know if I look Jewish, but I certainly don’t look black. When you lump Kwanzaa in with Chanukah I think that you think I am just saying Happy Chanukah to be PC, and that I don’t actually mean it sincerely. Here’s the truth: I don’t say Happy Chanukah to be inclusive or politically correct; I say it because celebrate it.
Second, there is the matter of timing. When you wish me a Merry Christmas and it’s not December 25th, it’s not actually Christmas day. When I wish you a Happy Chanukah, I am doing so on one of the eight days of Chanukah I am actually celebrating that day. When you wish me a Happy Kwanzaa, you are wishing me a happy holiday that isn’t even celebrated until the day after Christmas through New Year’s Day. If you want to wish anyone a Happy Kwanzaa, do so when it’s actually being celebrated.
The best response to Happy Chanukah? “Thank you.”
P.S. For clarification: I don’t go around wishing people Happy Chanukah, but when someone wishes me a Merry Christmas during Chanukah, I say, “Thank you! And Happy Chanukah!” Sometimes I say, “Thank you, and I’m celebrating Chanukah today.” I try various responses, but I prefer to acknowledge my celebration of Chanukah rather than just saying nothing about it. I suppose I am trying to make a statement, but I’m also sincere.
I see the pain in my face
Yet I see her too
I’m not orthodox about the way I celebrate holidays. There was the hamburger in the lasagna. Heck, on some Passovers I’ve breakfast on eggs, matzah with butter on it, and bacon. Once in a while, I give into a craving, mix meat and dairy, add bacon, and have it on a chometzdik bun! As I Facebooked Thursday, “Eating a Sourdough Jack during Passover is wrong in so many ways… but it feels so right.” I do try to avoid “cheating” for the sake of observing the holiday, but when I give in, I don’t feel guilty; I just joke about it. The way I see it, even if I’m breaking tradition and joking about it, I’m acknowledging the tradition. The stomping of feet, the smell of sweat breaking out on flushed skin, the fear and hope of people who grabbed what they could and ran out of Egypt without even time to let their dough rise– these “memories” are with me. One might ask, “If you’re going to break the commandments, why even bother?” Well, I would rather observe the holiday by mostly abstaining from chometz (leavening) than by not abstaining at all. This was our Pesach, and I enjoyed it!