by Clyde Lewis

"Keep Christmas in your own way and let me keep it in mine"—Scrooge

When I was a youth, the magical charm of Christmas meant many things to me. It was singing in Christmas choirs at church. It was the taste of drinking spiced cider and eating Chili at the annual Christmas pageant where the soft glow of the baby Jesus in the Christmas play was provided by a 75-watt light bulb. It was Mary and Joseph in the reenactment of the nativity wearing towels on their heads that had "Holiday Inn" embroidered at the bottom.

It was dancing and sneaking a kiss under the mistletoe with a girl that you would never have the nerve to kiss otherwise. The magic of Christmas encircles all the young and young at heart like a pine-bough wreath.

Every bit of love and affection that is given out is unwrapped and appreciated for just a few days. Then, somehow, we manage to get back to "normal" and the yearning for those feelings are like ghosts, haunting us as the clock ticks away and old age begins to creep up on us all.

There are those this Christmas who will be forced to remember just how good it was as opposed to how much lonelier and colder the season has become.

In the winter months, it becomes far too easy for an adult to loathe the fleeting daylight and lament the frigid cold as we walk in what seems to be an endless night, watching our foggy breath dance a ballet of nebulous images in front of our cold cherry noses.

We hear that annoying little bell that rings reminding us that a donation to a charity will bring good karma, and we reach into our pocket to find that we scarcely have enough to pay for the wrapping of the gifts that we had to max your credit cards for.

You find yourself caught up in that miasma of guilt that often carries you into a toxic trance every time you hear that the food pantries are empty and that some orphaned child will not get a special gift from Santa Claus.

You then become bombarded with the arguments of the politically correct and the piously religious that are too frightened to admit that both the secular trappings of the season can somehow coexist with the religious aspects of the holiday.

So the Christmas trees are replaced with "holiday trees" and the Christians grumble that they are being persecuted for their belief in Jesus and decide that it is time to fight for a dying Christmas because Christ has been replaced with one big "X."

Yet the same Christians forget that after September they insist, and demonstrate, that Halloween is demonic and that Christmas music should be played long before the frost kisses the jack-o-lanterns during the autumnal celebrations of the harvest and on the day we respect those who have passed away.

Autumn and winter have been successfully replaced by Christmas in an unhealthy tyrannical fashion.

Unbeknownst to eager and zealous Christians, there is a reason for the progression of our holidays. There is a reason why we have a reminder of the darkness at Halloween, a time of thanks at Thanksgiving and a time where the promise of light is to return to the earth during Christmas and Hanukah.

'Tis the season to be darkened. The winter darkness reminds us to strive for the light.'

In the Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis wrote about the White Witch and how she cast a spell making it always winter but never Christmas. Those in Narnia could see a change when Father Christmas, or Santa, appeared.

In the real world it is the opposite: Santa Claus and thoughts of the Christ Child arrive far too early in the season, making it Christmas from autumn until the clock chimes in the New Year. The Thanksgiving leftovers hardly cool and it is Christmas time long before the winter has a chance to settle in.

It is becoming more of the norm to see projections of sales on Christmas "cheer" a good month before the lights are hung. The crowds trample the meek as the Wal-Mart doors fly open the day after the turkey is consumed and the wishbones are broken.

The wishbones are replaced with arm bones and leg bones crushed under the weight of the gluttonous shopping mall zombies stomping into the Target (pronounced Tar-shay for that white-trash nuance). These thundering pachyderms pummel to the Musak hymns of Christmas battle. This type of riotous behavior has prompted religious purists to demand a separation between Church and Store.

"In today's consumer society, this time of the year is unfortunately subjected to a sort of commercial 'pollution' that is in danger of altering its true spirit, which is characterized by meditation, sobriety and by a joy that is not exterior but intimate."—Pope Benedict XVI

As the Pope fires the shot heard round the world the War on Christmas begins, and soon the forces of diversity are condemned to be secular scrooges and Christmas terrorists by the religiously paranoid who want to keep you thinking about Christmas but never the winter.

It seems we find a war to declare on everything, including Christmas.

There is no real war on Christmas but it would seem as if someone has declared it. All because there are businesses and shops that wish to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas."

It may come as a bit of sugarplum shock to realize that there are many store owners who say "Happy Holidays" in order to keep Christ out of the commercialism of the holiday. It is also an expression of tolerance, since all of the holidays of every religion seem to fall on or around the 25th of December.

So it appears that those Christians who claim to be oppressed and victimized want businesses to put Christ in Christmas and at the same time put Christ right in the middle of all of the commercialism.

History always seems to reflect what might come in the future, and, as the draped and hooded ghost of Christmas future shows us with his bony hand, the religious trappings of the holiday could very well be taken away.

It was attitudes about Christmas commercialism and godlessness that sparked a crackdown in the early 1700's, during which openly celebrating Christmas was a criminal offense. The Puritans were against "mad mirth", and in the 1700's Cotton Mather, a congregational minister of the Old North Church, believed that much of what he saw in Christmas was pagan and that the celebrations and pressures led to demonic and devilish behavior.

"The feast of Christ's nativity is spent in reveling, dicing, carding, masking, and in all licentious liberty by mad mirth, by long eating, by hard drinking, by lewd gaming, by rude reveling"—Cotton Mather

It is hard to convince the paranoid that no one is trying to silence Christmas, but we have seen year after year that no matter what happens, Christmas and its spirit will often prevail and there isn't a politically correct conspiracy to stop what is inevitable.

Those who always want to seal their Christmas message with a persecution complex should save their energies for something that will deliver us from the darkness that comes with the arrival of winter.

Every year the same worn-out war of words and the hatred it sparks can create darkness unto its own. Those who struggle and fight for and participate in the mincing of words often forget that there is a reason why Christmas seems to be marred by soured attitudes and vitriol.

Have the vocal majority lost their capacity for or the practice of recognizing and respecting the beliefs or practices of others?

It seems that many people have lost their ability to have tolerance this holiday and with the loss of tolerance we see the loss of love and caring of our brother's welfare.

No one is attacking Christmas. What we are seeing is demonic attitudes being kindled in order to amp up the culture war.

"Oh, it was so much fun this year, because saying 'Merry Christmas' is like saying 'Fuck You!' "—Ann Coulter

It is amazing how so many people believe exaggerated statements about the holiday and how there seems to be this imaginary war on Christmas. Fox news commentator Bill O'Reilly, in an interview about so called de-Christing of Christmas, stated:

"It's all part of the secular progressive agenda ... to get Christianity and spirituality and Judaism out of the public square because if you look at what happened in Western Europe and Canada, if you can get religion out, then you can pass secular progressive programs, like legalization of narcotics, euthanasia, abortion at will, gay marriage, because the objection to those things is religious-based, usually."—Bill O'Reilly

While forces of light work hard to protect the spirit of the season, a number of demonic forces are also produced and their abilities to damage the holiday are often underestimated. The stories of their morale-reducing tactics have been lost in the cultural collisions that occur throughout time eternal.

I have been writing lately on a theme of demonic conspiracy, because there seems to be a demon for everything. There is even a demon set aside to account for the obnoxious idea of a so-called war on Christmas created by straight faced neo-cons.

Neo-con, hypocritical Christians do the handiwork of this demon and hope you will never hear the name of the entity that brings hatred and malfeasance to the holiday season.

The demon's name is Krampus.

The Krampus is the beast-man of Christmas and appears in the legends of Santa Claus as a spoiler of Christmas cheer. Krampus is the agent of evil that beats with a switch those who wish to take away the humility, tolerance and wonder of the holiday.

He appears as a horned devil covered in fur with a long tongue.

He is the enforcer of what he determines to be righteous, and while that sounds like a great idea, Krampus is the bad cop to Santa's good cop. He is the one who uses corporal punishment on those who doubt the power of Christmas. His methods are hostile and if beating isn't enough to force you into the Christmas spirit, then perhaps being chained and placed in a bag may teach you that it is wrong to even tamper with the holiday.

While Krampus pretends to be the moral guardian of Santa he is truly an immoral demon. Krampus has been known to rape the women and scare the children into repentance.

Physically or emotionally beating and torturing someone into believing in an ideology is truly an evil act.

Isn't that the true nature of war, hostility for the cause of forcing a group of people to follow an agenda that is based on some phony premise?

Like the so-called war on Christmas?

Those who wish to believe that there is a war on Christmas invite Krampus into their lives in order to transform the holiday season into a mirror of their own dark and misguided pathological hostility.

John Gibson, another Fox News reporter turned author, has written a book about the holidays that doesn't extol any virtue or love for the season. It merely creates a phony outrage about the persecution of Christians and the de-Christing of the season. Gibson is the author of "The War on Christmas: How the Liberal Plot to Ban the Sacred Christian Holiday Is Worse Than You Thought."

Gibson wants to start a pretend War on Christmas all because a few people want to be uptight and politically correct by saying "Happy Holidays" or "Season's Greetings" at a time where we are being bombarded with Kwanza, Hanukah, Eid al-Adha, Winter Solstice and Bodhi Day celebrations.

Encouraging the thought form of a "War on Christmas" is far more destructive than telling your kids that Santa Claus sees you when you are sleeping and knows when you are masturbating.

Is anyone really aware of all of the celebrations and holidays that take place in December?

Do the major networks ever have cartoon specials devoted to Eid al-Adha, or even Bodhi Day? Ask a Christian how he feels about dragging out the dreidel and spinning it in public. I don't think the majority of Americans would know what do if their spin gave them a gimel, yet we all know what to do with our stockings on December 24th.

Just how far are we to go with all of this so-called persecution of Christians?

It is interesting how Christmas comes on schedule even though Gibson claims that there is a conspiracy of secularist liberal meanies with their satanic agendas out to eradicate it.

How can there be a conspiracy against Christmas when the whole affair begins as soon as we take off our Halloween masks?

I guess the Christian majority is expected to pout every time someone hands out a greeting card that has "Season's Greetings" or "Happy Holidays" embossed in gold on the front.

How great is the Christmas spirit when we are encouraged to vocalize our hatred because there aren't enough nativity scenes in public places. How many of them do we need in the public square?

What would satisfy Jerry Falwell or Pat Robertson?

It is obvious that a multitude of Christians feel that a Yuletide ass-kicking is in order. You are to kick ass for the Lord and tell the liberal bastards that Jesus is the reason for the season.

When someone says "Happy Holidays," Christians are admonished not to turn the other cheek. They are to be offended — not just offended, but outraged just like Jesus Christ expects them to be.

Is it Jesus that demands this type of petty intolerance, or is it that Krampus spirit that dwells in these so-called Christian leaders that demonstrate their persecution complex every year?

If a Christian with a huge chip on his shoulder is in a store maxing out his credit card on Christmas presents and some brace-faced heathen says "Happy Holidays," then it is Krampus the Christmas demon that enters into their very soul when they decide to glare at the store clerk with that cold icicle stare and say "How dare you say this to me. Are you aware that I am a Christian?"

Then it might be wise to grab the clerk by the collar and say, "Why do you insist on persecuting us Christians?"

It would be the Krampus style to rough him up a bit and threaten him.

Afterwards it would be in the zealot's best interest to demand to see the manager while a line of people who are supposedly good Christian consumers are impatiently waiting to spend their hard-earned money on meaningless doodads that help to make the season bright.

It is important as a fighting Christian to tell the manager that THIS IS WAR!

Keep in mind that Krampus the Christmas demon expects Christians to believe that they are victims. He wants them to be obnoxious and scream that this is an affront to the majority of Christians.

Krampus wants every pathological Christian militant to believe that all of your fellow Christian brethren are counting on you to explain how YOU are saved and that the heathen, secularist, homosexual, abortion loving liberalists are not and that they will burn in hell for de-Christing your holiday!

It is a slippery slope: first it's not saying "Merry Christmas", and then we are all sent to the gas chambers.

How can a group of people, namely white Christians that dominate this nation believe that Christmas is being taken from them? How can they believe it will ever be taken from them? Odds are those who say "Happy Holidays" are Christians.

If they outlawed saying "Merry Christmas", would that stop it from coming?

We need to ask Gibson, O'Reilly, and Coulter if they feel that we are not Christian enough for the holidays? How Christian does one have to be to please their unqualified criticism?

How qualified is O'Reilly to speak on behalf of the Christians when he was involved with a sexual scandal at his workplace?

Andrea Mackris, a former Fox producer of the "O'Reilly Factor", claimed that O'Reilly made a series of sexually explicit phone calls to her, including talking about vibrators and asking for phone sex. Mackris claims that she had audio tapes of him jacking off on the phone and that she wanted 60 million dollars.

"O'Reilly has "a lot to answer for, to his wife and to his God."—Andrea Mackris

O'Reilly settled the case quickly.

Ann Coulter seems to spout off all kinds of statements just to see if she can get a rise out of anyone who hates liberals or even anyone who believes in tolerance.

She appears to be the most intolerant commentator around, and we are led to believe that the majority of viewers love her. Her diatribes tend to be divisive and unbelievable. Somehow she manages to be in the public eye speaking with demeaning and far-fetched epithets. She stretches her privileges of free speech to the breaking point.

"Kwanzaa itself is a lunatic blend of schmaltzy '60s rhetoric, black racism and Marxism. Indeed, the seven 'principles' of Kwanzaa praise collectivism in every possible arena of life economics, work, personality, even litter removal."— Ann Coulter

Speaking for the sanctity of Christmas and her moral ground for the preservation of Christian values Ann Coulter has some interesting opinions on morality:

"Let's say I go out every night, I meet a guy and have sex with him. Good for me. I'm not married."— Ann Coulter

Her mini skirts, blonde hair and rapier wit can get her a guest spot on Sean Hannity's program but her hypocrisy will get her bagged and beaten by Krampus the Christmas demon as he makes his journey back to hell to deliver the bad girls and boys to Satan himself.

Knowing what we know about her now, perhaps she would "put out" for Krampus, after all it is always the good sport that takes one for the team.

Can we pause for a moment and ask ourselves how we have allowed certain people to wield Christmas and their phony outrage as a cudgel?

Can we at least tell them that their inappropriate behavior is not welcome at a time where we are to feel joy and happiness about the light that is supposed to enter in and warm us from the winter's chill?

"Well, all things bright and beautiful is the theme this year. I think it will be really bright and beautiful with this fabulous tree. But thank you all very much. Happy holidays. I know this is the real start of the season, the Monday after Thanksgiving, and so I want to wish everybody happy holidays."—Laura Bush

Even the First Lady of the United States sees no harm in attacking — or should I say preserving — a happy holiday.

The saddest thing of all is that everything in the United States seems to be politicized. Partisan rancor is the real enemy of Christmas. Even at a time where we are to forget our differences for one day out of the year, the minions of Krampus do their dirty work to create a division with their pathetic claims of persecution.

Isn't Christmas a day set aside for remembering the birth of a child that grew up and taught us all to love one another? Didn't this child teach us to be benevolent and tolerant of each other?

Just how important is a word?

Why must a minority of vocal Christians claim persecution every time they are met with roadblocks when they try to monopolize religious practice in the United States?

Yes it is CHRISTMAS and we should not be embarrassed to say it. Jesus is part of the reason for the season and it is a sacred and humble time to remember the beauty of the birth of a religious icon. The iconography only dresses up what would be a cold, dark and lonely day otherwise.

That is why we need the light of the holiday.

Wish everyone "Happy Holidays" and learn from their celebrations of light and realize that this light is here to lead us through the darkness and warm our hearts for the idea of true peace on earth and good will.

The magic of Christmas and the joy of the Holidays are there to promote faith and good works that we hopefully can apply towards a happier and prosperous New Year.

There is no danger to anyone's faith if there is a dreidel being held by Santa Claus in a public display or the word X-mas painted on a signboard to save space. There is no harm in having Santa bow his head before the Christ child in a hometown nativity scene.

You may not agree with me, but Christmas comes all over the world even in places where people are forced to observe it in private.

There is no danger to Christmas in the United States as long as we are not imprisoned for having a Christmas tree or shot and killed for having a nativity scene in our front yard. The danger to Christmas is all in one's head.

The danger to Christmas is intellectual bankruptcy.