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Published: Wednesday, 12/21/2005

Christmas season is what it is

You know, if I buy an evergreen tree in December, and I decorate it with all kinds of lights and flashy stuff, I'm going to call it a Christmas tree, just as my parents before me, and their parents before them. If the community buys a tree and decorates it with lights and flashy stuff, it's a Christmas tree.

You may call it anything you wish, but your parents knew and their parents knew it as a Christmas tree, no matter how they flavored their religion.

They weren't mealy-mouthed. They knew that to Christians it heralded an important time of their year. To everyone else it generally was a flag to get out the wallet, max the credit card, and eat and drink yourself silly.

If a tree dissatisfies you, don't waste your time or attention. Get your own symbol, build your own spirit, set aside your own time of the year, and invite me to your party.

Meantime, it's Merry Christmas! Yep, to you, too!

Robert L. Faison

Sylvania

Amid the controversy of wishing people "Happy Holidays" vs. "Merry Christmas," the move to take Christ out of the celebration, and all of the commercial hustle and bustle, it took some children from St. Clement School to put into perspective the true reason for this Christmas celebration. Several students braved the bone-chilling temperatures on Dec. 9-10 to be part of a "Living Nativity."

These children brought to the forefront a simple reminder of why we celebrate Christmas. It is so nice to know that the St. Clement students are well grounded in their faith and service to others. Not only do St. Clement students excel in academics and athletics, but also in living their faith.

The children who took part in the Living Nativity are to be commended for giving of their time to share the joy of this Christmas season with others.

TERRI STEVENS

Valley Forge Drive

Since many people find it important to quote me when commenting on my statements about Christmas versus the holidays, I must make my position clear. It is not important what you say; it is how one acts that displays your true spirit.

For example, already this school year I have observed many good works enthusiastically demonstrating the spirit of the students of Bowsher High School. Our students raised more than $2,000 for hurricane victims.

The Latin club has taken the responsibility of providing Christmas for three families in the Toledo area. These families include eight children who otherwise would have had no Christmas.

The Bowsher Service Corps and our DECA students combined efforts and collected hundreds of canned goods to be donated to a local food bank. They also spent the night outside school in cardboard boxes to publicize the fate of the homeless.

The Bowsher staff raised $1,500 in two days to help defray the costs of travel for a friend of mine whose wife was recently diagnosed with cancer and was transferred to a hospital in Texas.

While academics and preparation for graduating are crucial, so too is it important that we prepare students in areas that will make them better citizens for life beyond school.

How we treat each other in times of need are far more important than the names we use to describe our tree or our musical performances. Finding opportunities to promote caring and respect among ourselves and for others will make our society and our world the place we all hope it can be.

LARRY BLACK

Principal

Bowsher High School

This is to all those people who want to take Christmas out of the season. How many of these people report to work on Christmas, Easter, and other religious holidays? To take the holiday off work, to accept even one penny's worth of holiday pay, to attend a company Christmas party or receive a Christmas bonus, is to personally validate that holiday.

If they were true non-believers, then I suggest that they also return any Christmas gift, bonus, or cards they receive, or donate these or any other blessings to charity.

It may not seem fair to them, but it's also not fair to us that less than 5 percent of the American population is trying to ruin Christmas for the rest of us.

Oh, and by the way, Merry Christmas!

Chuck Lundy

Holgate, Ohio

I'm not sure I understand what all the hype is about wishing a "Happy Holiday" to people instead of "Merry Christmas."

As my circle of friends and acquaintances has widened, not to mention all the retail clerks and all the other people we run into on a daily basis, I found that not all of them celebrated Christmas, but during the Christmas season did have other religious affiliations and customs, so my cards and verbal greetings started to reflect the "Happy Holiday" sentiment. If you look at the word holiday it can easily be pronounced holy day by just changing the way you say it. Isn't that what Christmas is?

I think "Happy Holiday" takes in everyone I know. Even people who do not have a religious connection can be included in the greeting. After all, most get to enjoy a day off to spend with their families and friends; isn't that what a holiday is?

Eileen Posadny

Oldham Drive

I am writing to commend the greater Toledo area for its response to the Old Newsboys Charity Sale on Dec. 9. We don't have the results yet tabulated, but we remain optimistic despite the tough weather conditions on that day.

It is because of the weather that we need support. The more snow we get and as temperatures go down, the demand for coats and shoes goes up. Our goal is to always meet that demand to help needy families and children.

I also want to salute all the businesses who allowed us to sell our papers and our "partner," The Blade, which printed our special edition paper and helped us with distribution.

Happy holidays and thank you from the Old Newsboys!

Bill Sanford

Chairman

2005 Charity Paper Sale

River Road

I have to take issue with the well-intentioned writer of the letter "President excels in art of stagecraft."

This is an insult - not to the President, but to the art of theater.

Theater art is not about "fooling" people. From the beginning, theater art, at least in western civilization, has been concerned with revealing truth or truths (ask Oedipus, among others).

The letter writer has perhaps visited backstage, but reports only surface sightings. The surfaces that he reports seeing there exist not to deceive but to reveal truth.

Who in civilized society is so naive as to mistake the story on stage for actual life?

That paper moon fools, deceives, no one.

Rather, by "a willing suspension of disbelief," we accept the theater convention that that prop signifies "moon" and whatever we think moon symbolizes.

As one of our greatest presidents (a Republican and too frequent a theater-goer for his own good) knew, when you are talking about "fooling" some or all of the people you are talking politics.

When you talk about seeking truth, you are talking about art, and I include all the liberal arts as well as drama.

I don't know who President Bush's stage manager is, but he or she is no artist other than a con.

Bob Versteeg

Bowling Green

Having the last word about Christmas. First there was Christmas. Then there was Xmas. First there was Holy Days. Then there was holidays. And so I say, Merry Christmas and Happy Holy Days to all and to all a good night!

Robert Moyers

Liberty Center, Ohio



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