Then came Thanksgiving followed by the beginning of the Christmas season. We decided to begin decorating earlier than usual. The outside to beat the snow that has yet to come, then the inside so we weren't rushed and we'd have longer to enjoy our efforts. Christmas greetings needed to be written and mailed.
Christmas. The time of year when pleas go out, no matter the economy, for toys and food and clothing and all else that makes it festive and meaningful for the less fortunate. What makes it holy is the response of the people who contribute like those paying off lay away accounts at K-Mart. After all it is the season.
The one thing you won't get is Christmas greetings from your Congressman. The President, yes, if you're a worthy contributor. Your Senator, yes. But not from your Congressman. At least not unless he decides to fund it from his own pocket.
According to The Washington Examiner if Congressmen want their mailings to be "franked", paid for with tax payer dollars, they cannot contain holiday greetings. Not even New Years!
According to the franking manual, item 4(a), examples include birthdays, anniversaries, births, retirements or condolences along with the aforementioned holiday greetings. I don't know when this began. When my Dad passed away Mom got a condolence card from President and Mrs. Reagan. She had no idea why since he was a staunch Democrat and resented it because they hadn't a clue who he was! A meaningless gesture for a misdirected reason. But Merry Christmas from your Congressman?
I seem to remember hearing this is a nation built on Christian principles. Even those of us who do not profess to be "Christian" abide by those principles. We reference God on our money and in our pledge of allegiance. What is so politically incorrect about our Congressmen and women wishing their constituents a Merry Christmas?
The separation of church and state doesn't wash if the Senate, the Executive branch and the Judicial are not forbidden to do the same. So what is it? Rank has it's privileges?
I don't know where that puts me, a lowly citizen who grew up with nothing but fond memories of the season and the day. Christmas. A time of celebration and merriment as well as a time for reflection.
Unfortunately I've been reflecting on the dismal downward spiral of a country I dearly love. I wonder where our elected officials have come from and how they've become what they are - and are not.
I worry that government has become so large and unwieldy and those within so entrenched the bad can no longer be reversed.
One thing I do know, though, is that December 25 is Christmas and January 1 is New Years and the pleas in the paper for "Christmas for All" will always be heeded by we lowly citizens.
As for the wizards of government who come up with this stuff, take your regulations and manuals and stuff them. A turkey might be an appropriate place.