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WHOSE BIRTHDAY IS IT, ANYWAY?
By Devvy Kidd
November 13, 2003
While walking through the doors today at the local office supply conglomerate here in Annapolis, I was immediately overwhelmed by the massive display of "Christmas" stuff. While my writing generally focuses on national issues, I would like to take this opportunity to ask each reader this question:
Whose birthday is December 25th?
This is the very question I put to my family several years ago as they all began the worrisome "What can I buy for my relative" syndrome. Each member of my family responded: Well, Christmas is the day Jesus was born.
Ah! Now we're making progress. My next question to each member of my family was: If December 25th is the day Christians celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, why do you run out every year and put yourself in debt to buy me a birthday present? It's not my birthday.
Each family member simply came back with the standard herding response: Well, because we've always bought each other presents.
I again came back with the original question: Why do you feel compelled to buy me a present to celebrate the birth of Jesus?
It was at that time that I told my family no more presents. No more this pressure of having to spend money you don't have and run around like a crazy person from the day after Thanksgiving up until Christmas eve just to have presents under a tree. Not for me because I don't want any presents. I don't need things. I don't want to see my parents spending their retirement income or my siblings their limited income to buy me "things." My husband and I are blessed and spending at Christmas has never been a burden, but it has for the rest of my family and I want nothing to do with it. Besides, it's not my birthday.
America's retailers need you to spend
This may be true, but it's not my obligation to run out six weeks before December 25th and spend myself silly on substandard trash from communist countries like China who murder their own people and force women to abort near full term babies. As a person who believes in and totally supports a free enterprise system, I am cognizant that consumers like me hurt the economy by not buying. However, I cannot and will not sacrifice my principles just to keep retailers afloat during the last six weeks of each year.
Retailers would do well to remember that what really made America the most prosperous and wealthy nation on this earth was our industrial, manufacturing and agricultural industries. Tens of millions of jobs for Americans. Good jobs. Jobs that produced the needs of our Republic. Since the onslaught of unconstitutional "free" trade treaties like NAFTA & GATT, those vital, productive areas have been wholesaled off U.S. soil and people like me will go without before we put one more American out of work. People like me will go without before we consign one more young adult to the kitchens of some fast food junk joint instead of good paying, producing jobs.
If any supporters of "free" trade out there still have any doubt as to the destruction foisted upon this nation by "free" trade, I would respectfully recommend they read a recent and very comprehensive article by Patrick Buchanan titled The Death of Manufacturing:
Of course, all the blame doesn't go just to the retailers. It all starts with the U.S. Congress who continue to pass these insane "free" trade treaties that are then signed into law by our global presidents. Then come the American people themselves who are destroying our economy, our sovereignty and our future by continuing to buy foreign products. Retailers are firing their customers and consumers are buying themselves right out of self-reliance. The day is quickly approaching when America will no longer be able to sustain even her most basic needs without importing them from our enemies. The death of our Republic is glaring the stupid right in the face while their stupid face is glued to Survivor or Nip N Tuck.
The beauty of Christmas
Despite the fact that our family no longer participates in the buying spree called "Christmas," that doesn't mean we don't enjoy the beauty of a tree, the snow and a wonderful, loud and loving family dinner. Gone is the pressure on my family members who really don't have that extra disposable cash to buy each other presents to celebrate the birth of the Lamb of God. I dearly love my family and I am so happy they no longer feel that obligation and pressure to buy, buy, buy because everyone else is doing it.
Gone is that strain upon my 77-year old mother to hurry up and buy, wrap and ship those birthday, er, "Christmas" presents to all the grand and great grand children scattered in other states. Unfortunately, my brother still insists on buying the kids "Christmas" presents. My comment to him was not to fall into the same trap that Americans have for centuries: instilling greed in your children.
Oh, I bought my daughter lots of presents each Christmas. Now I wished I hadn't. Well I can still remember the Christmas mornings when she would simply grab one present after another, rip the paper and bows off, then grab the next one and the next one. Little did she, then only a child, see the unsettling behavior I observed. But, Brandy went to a private Christian School all her life and she has grown into a remarkable, warm and loving young woman. Thankfully, she has outgrown that feverish behavior about "Christmas" presents.
Each "Christmas" season I stand in line at the post office and watch weary, harried people, arms full of boxes, fuming at the long line in front of them and marvel at how well the herding technique actually works. I watch them in the department store if I have to run in for a particular item. When I remark at a counter that I don't participate in the silly buying season, people just stare at me like I have two heads. Quite personally, I feel just fine not participating for my thoughts at "Christmas" have nothing to do with buying birthday presents for my family on a day that isn't their birthday.
The meaning of Christmas
Everyone worships in their own way and that is one of our most precious rights as Americans. I would only like to say that I hope that this year, Christians will remember that Christmas isn't about buying other people presents to celebrate the birth of Jesus. The three wise men brought gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Mary. They sought only to look upon the Christ Child. How lucky they were! But, look what that simple, humble and most awesome occasion has turned into today. It's positively nauseating. America's moral foundation, her people's profound belief in God and the celebration of their faith made America strong and great. Now, cheap wind up toys from Communist Hong Kong or the Philippines have replaced the soul of our Republic.
I would leave you with a prayer that I hope you will remember this "holiday" season, for in the end, there are no "Christmas" presents, no "Christmas" party hoopla, and no crowded malls. There is only you and the journey we must all take because no one escapes this life alive. I have carried this 'Prayer to St. Joseph' in my wallet for more than 25 years. I hope you will feel the wonder I do each time I read it:
Oh, St. Joseph, whose protection is so great, so strong, so prompt before the throne of God, I place in you all my interest and desires. Oh, St. Joseph, do assist me by your powerful intercession, and obtain for me from your divine Son all spiritual blessings, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. So that, having engaged here below your heavenly power, I may offer my thanksgiving and homage to the Loving of Fathers.
Oh, St. Joseph, I near weary contemplating you, and Jesus asleep in your arms; I dare not approach while He reposes near your heart. Press Him in my name and kiss His fine head for me and ask Him to return the Kiss when I draw my dying breath. St. Joseph, Patron of departed souls -- Pray for me.
This prayer was found in the fiftieth year of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In 1505, it was sent from the Pope to Emperor Charles, when he was going into battle. As the shoppers go into battle for the best sale this "Christmas" season, will they even remember what "Christmas" is all about?
© 2003 Devvy Kidd - All Rights Reserved
Devvy Kidd is the has been a guest on more than 1500 radio shows, given hundreds of speeches and has run for Congress twice. Sales of her little booklets, "Why A Bankrupt America" and "Blind Loyalty" sold close to 2,000,000 copies. Devvy is a contibuting writer for www.NewsWithViews.com Devvy's web site is: www.devvy.com; e-mail is: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Ah! Now we're making progress. My next question to each member of my family was: If December 25th is the day Christians celebrate the birth of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, why do you run out every year and put yourself in debt to buy me a birthday present? It's not my birthday.""