Tuesday, December 05, 2006

And a Merry Christmas to you too....

In a fantastically ignorant misunderstanding of multiculturalism, up to 70% of UK businesses have advised their staff against indulging in ‘Merry Christmas’ type conversations with their customers. (By the way, have you noticed how the term ‘customer’ is now used to describe anybody from the person at the pick ‘n’ mix counter at Woollies to the person with schizophrenia at the end of the housing list? But that’s another post for another day…) As I was saying....how do supposedly intelligent people have such a monumental capacity for missing the point and, in the process, handing on a huge silver platter the opportunity for small-minded Middle England to go “ooh, look how oppressed we white middle classes are. Why, we can’t even wish each other a merry Christmas anymore”?

Apparently this advice is based on the misguided notion that ‘people of other faiths’ may find it offensive and even sue - for what? You hurt my feelings? - by which they transparently mean that ‘people of Muslim faith’ may find it offensive. I am not Muslim, but if I were, I would be deeply offended at the thought that someone might possibly imagine that wishing me a Merry Christmas would offend me. So well done to the Christian-Muslim forum for politely pointing this out.

In a previous incarnation I worked for a provincial Local Authority and got mightily hacked off with this annual piece of lip-service to anti-oppressive practice, which seemed to allow the powers that be to ignore the year round parade of discriminatory practice towards any number of minority groups. So listen up there, you stupid corporate people: there really is plenty of institutionalised discrimination out there for you to get your teeth into, should you really want to, without getting all sensitive about a bit of seasonal good cheer. God knows, we all need it.


Samson & his Mummy Juliet said...

Rant away all you like....you are saying exactly what most people have been thinking anyway.

If it's not banning Poppies in November or frowning at flying the English flag, it's pretending to be a-sexual with no opinions. Sick to the back teeth of misguided do gooders, I am going to wear my Father Christmas hat this year with pride and toast a Merry Christmas to everyone with my large glass of Port. Rudolph will be proud!!!

Merry Christmas to you!

That's so pants said...

Glad to see someone else smells a morbidly obese rodent here. I too have worked for local authorities and you know you can never actually rule out total stupidity at the top but I also believe there is a divisory agenda going on here. The only time I have ever come across anyone who indicated, quite strongy actually, that they did not want to receive Christmas cards, was a Mormon. I have been the grateful recipient of Eid, Hanukkah and Diwali cards. There are at least four opportunities to express good will towards each other in this country. We should all make the most of them.

Ms Melancholy said...

Oddly, the only person I have ever met who refused christmas cards was also Mormon, and my feeling was that she made far too much of a fuss about it for it to be genuinely about her faith (but I would say that, cos I'm a psychotherapist.)I totally agree that we should just celebrate whatever the hell we can get away with.

Nice to meet you Samson :)