Recently, two friends told me how offended they are by the greeting “Happy Holidays.“ They associate this phrase with a sentiment that tries to include good tidings for many holidays during December, including Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. It’s deemed offensive to these friends because they celebrate Christmas.
I was baffled. I personally didn’t know any Jewish people until I went away to college and hadn’t heard of Kwanzaa until even later, yet I had always heard and said “Happy Holidays.“ This was to abbreviate “Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!“ It’s the holiday season because we have Thanksgiving, then go right into preparing for Christmas, then we keep our Christmas decorations up through the end of the holiday season, which is New Year’s Day.
When I made this argument to one of the offended parties, they argued no, “Happy Holidays” is just a PC (politically correct) term that undermines Christmas. She was also offended when her friend talked about her “holiday baking.“ Do people take offense when Perry Como sings, “Oh there’s no place like home for the holidays?“ How about when Andy Williams sings “Happy Holidays …“?
No offense, but let’s stop the war on Happy Holidays.