An early squirmish in the War On Christmas has erupted over an ornament sold by Hallmark; the ornament depicts a traditional Ugly Christmas Sweater with lines from “Deck the Halls” on it, but “Don we now our gay apparel” has been changed to “Don we now our FUN apparel.” A few people rolled their eyes and complained on the company’s FaceSpace page, noting that the change seemed a kind of douchey. The Blaze includes some samples, including this inflammatory Politically Correct madness: “Hallmark: It’s okay to be gay, you don’t need to rewrite Christmas carol lyrics.”
American Patriarchy Association spokesweirdo Bryan Fischer tweeted a link to the story, describing the kerfuffle as
The bully bigots of Big Gay committing a hate crime, going after Hallmark over sexual orientation
Sure, that’s just how we read it too!
We’re enjoying the cognitive dissonance in the whole silly fuck-tussle: you have The Gheys standing up for the “traditional” lyrics, and wingnuts — who usually freak out if any element of Christmas Tradition is messed with — are defending poor besieged Hallmark from the PC hordes who want the word GAY front and center all the time, because they can’t stop thinking about hot throbbing man on man sex all the time, have you noticed how obsessed those filthy gays are with huge throbbing cocks? Do you know what they do in bed? Here is a detailed list…
Hallmark issued a very bland statement Wednesday, explaining that it was just trying to be historically accurate while sidestepping that one word that 5th-graders like to shout and snicker about while caroling:
Hallmark created this year’s Holiday Sweater ornament in the spirit of fun. When the lyrics to “Deck the Halls” were translated from Gaelic and published in English back in the 1800s, the word “gay” meant festive or merry. Today it has multiple meanings, which we thought could leave our intent open to misinterpretation.
The trend of wearing festively decorated Christmas sweaters to parties is all about fun, and this ornament is intended to play into that, so the planning team decided to say what we meant: “fun.” That’s the spirit we intended and the spirit in which we hope ornament buyers will take it.
So There. Don’t you feel festive now?
We think that the first comment on the Blaze story far more accurately sums up the company’s thinking:
“Gay used to mean happy. Yet another thing gays ruined.”
So there’s your War On Christmas guideline: Tradition must be defended, unless the gheys like it.
Our own first awareness of the intersection between tradition and politics came in the form of a mid-’70s thing we saw in Ms magazine, a banner reading “Peace on Earth, Goodwill to People.” We got the inclusive intention, but the meter sounded pretty clunky — but we would have been fine with “Goodwill to All,” which we figure may have been one of our first steps down the deadly path toward becoming an English teacher and an editor.