Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy Holidays from the White House

The inviting fireside scene pictured above appears on this year's official White House holiday card, and, yes, that's the "first dog," Bo, enjoying the fire's warmth. In recent days, certain political figures and so-called "news" outlets have criticized the card because it wishes recipients "happy holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas," depicts a poinsettia instead of a Christmas tree, and features a family pet "instead of traditions like 'family, faith and freedom.'" It's tempting to fire back against such ridiculous attacks, especially when the card circulated this year by the outraged "news" entity in question not only doesn't mention Christmas but features two cartoon characters killing the mascot of a competing business. However, this is not the season for that kind of nonsense. Rather, this is a time when we should celebrate this country's true religious heritage, which is based on tolerance, freedom and respect for the sanctity of individual conscience on matters of faith. In that spirit, I'm posting pictures below of some of the White House cards from years gone by. Does anyone really think that this year's card falls outside the norm?










The true spirit of Christmas is imbued with a genuine desire for peace and compassion for one another, regardless of background or beliefs. Part of the power and beauty of holiday music is that so much of it serves to underscore this simple message -- perhaps none more so than the stunningly beautiful "Dona Nobis Pacem." Listen HERE

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