WWJS (What Would Jesus Say) about the CHRIST-mas Tree
Bill Berkowitz printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Dec 11, 2009 at 01:53:54 PM EST
Tired of being 'Happy Holidayed' everywhere she went, Boss Creation's Martha Boggs came up with the end all/be all in Christmas tree decorations

When it comes to the "War on Christmas," you never know what to expect. Which so-called "incident" will be blown totally out of proportion? Which religious right organization will threaten the most boycotts of stores not righteously Christmasy enough? Which Fox Television News commentator will take the lead in mustering the troops? What super-Christian Christmas-related products might be offered up to a beleaguered public?  

The answer to the last question is the CHRIST-mas tree, which is brought to you by a company called "Boss Creations," an enterprise that apparently nothing to do with "The Boss", Bruce Springsteen, or even Hugo Boss.

It does have everything to do with the "War on Christmas." And, if you're looking for a "which side are you on" moment, check out the new "CHRIST-mas" Tree -- an 5-7' simulated wooden cross planted in an adjustable phony Christmas tree.  

Martha Boggs signs up for the 'War on Christmas

Yes, even though the ins and outs of health care reform, the climate change confab in Copenhagen, Uganda's anti-homosexual death panels, and, dare I say it, Tiger Woods' serial indiscretions, have been topics of interest these days, nothing ... repeat nothing ... tops the War on Christmas for some conservative Christian evangelical groups.

Here's how Martha Boggs, the founder of Boss Creations (http://www.bosscreations.net/, describes the sorry situation Christians have been facing during the first decade of the twenty-first century, and how she decided to combat it:

"When I became a Christian a few years ago, I was appalled by the secularization of the Christmas holiday. When retail stores started substituting 'Happy Holidays' for 'Merry Christmas,' and schools began calling their Christmas programs 'Winter Plays,' it all seemed ridiculous to me. That's why we have created products that remind people what the Christmas season is really all about -- the birth of Christ."

Boss Creations' website points out that the company "is the best source for your faith-inspired holiday decoration needs. We offer a variety of unique, innovative and high-quality Christian-themed decorations that are sure to enhance your holiday celebration! Our collection of inspiring trees, wreaths and other decorations are designed to remind us of the true meaning of the Christmas holiday. Let us help you to put Christ back into Christmas this holiday season."

The reasoning behind the CHRIST-mas Tree stems from the secularist War on Christmas:

"In recent years," the website points out, "our Christmas holiday has been made to become a generic holiday for all religions with many being forced to call it a `Holiday' season instead of Christmas season. We, as Christians, must take a stand and rescue our religious holiday. We at Boss Creations believe that one way to do this is to decorate with more Christian-themed holiday decorations including The CHRIST-mas Tree."

"We have figured a way to enhance the tradition of decorating a tree for Jesus at Christmas by adding a cross that acts as a reminder of Him. By changing our tree to include a cross, we are making a statement that we want to keep our Christmas holiday! Our new tree and decorations ideas will not only help to enhance our celebration of the Christmas holiday but will help to enlighten those who may decorate for Christmas but may not be `Christians.'"

Two longtime conservative Christian evangelical legal outfits engaged in the War on Christmas -- Liberty Counsel and ACLJ (American Center for Law and Justice) -- are two of the four other sites Boss Creations recommends.

Apparently, A portion of the proceeds of all "CHRIST-mas" Tree sales will go to support the American Center of Law & Justice, an organization recently hailed by BusinessWeek as "the leading advocacy group for religious freedom," as well as to the Liberty Counsel, a nonprofit litigation, education and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of human life and the traditional family.

Of course the adjustable CHRIST-mas Tree - up to 7.5 ft tall - is as phony as the War on Christmas itself!:

"The trunk of the tree is made to resemble a wooden cross as a reminder Jesus all season. The Fir style branches are made of highest quality PE material."

And the price is a Christmas friendly, family friendly $599.00. (Within days after writing that the price was $599.00, it was reduced to $399.00.)

Boss Creations would probably prefer you not think about how many toys you could contribute to Toys for Tots, how many meals you could provide at a church-sponsored soup kitchen, or how many bags of groceries you could donate to a Food Bank, for $399.00.

But my friends -- and you are my friends - allow me to ask this: Is a cross built into a phony tree really enough of a statement during a war? Shouldn't there be something more? Something more authentic? Are the secularists winning when you settle for a cross in a tree?

Let me suggest something before Martha Boggs comes up with it.

How about attaching a person to the cross in the tree. That person need not be nailed to the cross; a little Velcro and a platform would make one's stay not too unbearable. In fact it could become part of your holiday, er, Christmas tradition. Picture grandma, grandpa, mom, dad, brother, sister and your lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and questioning friends climbing the perch and rotating every few hours or so.

Now, WWJS about that!

"Boss Creations would probably prefer you not think about how many toys you could contribute to Toys for Tots, how many meals you could provide at a church-sponsored soup kitchen, or how many bags of groceries you could donate to a Food Bank, for $399.00."

I think that this would be far more in alignment with what Jesus wanted, rather than that offensive attempt at profiting off of people's beliefs through political positioning.

I would change that suggestion slightly, however- because many of the church-sponsored soup kitchens require listening to a (in most cases) guilt-trip  or hellfire and damnation sermon before receiving services.  Ditto for some of the food banks.

I would recommend to people that they look before they leap- research the charity they'd help.  Make sure that the charity isn't using their gifts as a means of coercing others (which is not uncommon).

by ArchaeoBob on Fri Dec 11, 2009 at 02:19:23 PM EST

remind my fellow nonbelievers that, just because a religious entity is running a soup kitchen or food bank, please don't rule them all out. I have helped at a few food banks, and the religious ones have been great at delivering help to those who need it, and without anyone even mentioning religion. And the food banks are all being stressed to their limits right now; Imagine if the unemployment situation doesn't improve for another 6 months or a year?

by trog69 on Fri Dec 11, 2009 at 07:48:33 PM EST

If food pantries or kitchens receive any federal aid, it's against the law for them to require patrons to sit through any religious teachings or to take religious materials (though materials can be offered). Even though it sounds mean, if I were to encounter such a situation, I'd a) verify receipt of federal funds and then b) report the site for violations, after which I'd c) find another group in the area to support that is in compliance. And I'd also make sure others not inclined to support mandatory religious indoctrination know of the problems and steer them toward the group that complies with federal regulations.

by RevRuthUCC on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 03:41:41 PM EST
I don't know how some of them have gotten away with the things I've heard of (and having reports coming from different and completely unrelated sources, I think the reports are valid - some from people who were homeless and experienced the stuff first hand).  But it does seem that those groups do get away with things that are horrific - maybe because people cannot grasp the idea than an entire church or denomination could be so evil.

What is painful is that people would tell me stories, often off the record- and their usual experience was that people wouldn't believe them because they were homeless.  But when you encountered the same story from different people, from different places and at different times... I think it is a pretty strong indication that the stories are valid (I generally find homeless people are truthful if you treat them with a little respect and LISTEN).  

I know that the practice of requiring listening to a sermon or sitting through a "Bible study" is very common, and it's not reported.  I know of at least one group that does that... and for all I know, they get federal funding.  If I knew the name of the church, I might look into it.  I also think that most of this stuff flies under the radar- the Government doesn't watch very closely (and maybe it's deliberate in some areas.)

by ArchaeoBob on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 07:59:06 PM EST

Happy Chanukah!

Of course He would actually say it in either Hebrew or Aramaic.

by Frank Cocozzelli on Sat Dec 12, 2009 at 03:32:50 PM EST

Absolutely accurate!!!

by ArchaeoBob on Sat Dec 12, 2009 at 05:10:55 PM EST

but be reminded of the late comedian Bill Hicks's comment: "When Jesus comes back, do you think he is going to want to see any crosses?"

by nogodsnomasters on Sat Dec 12, 2009 at 07:00:56 PM EST

It adds more to the stupidity to think that the christmas tree is pagan tradition. In any case it is definitely NOT a christian symbol.  

by numberlab on Sat Dec 12, 2009 at 09:20:32 AM EST

that she spend a few of those bucks on a website designer. Seriously.

by soulfabric on Sun Feb 14, 2010 at 04:17:12 AM EST

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