Respecting Other Holidays!

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Respecting Other Holidays!

Meleah York, Editor-in-Chief

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The holidays are a time filled with giving, togetherness, and tradition. Most of us here at Keller are accustomed to celebrating Christmas, either religiously or a bit watered-down. But the truth is that this time of year is not a celebration of Christmas for everyone.

Other common winter holidays such as Hanukkah and Kwanzaa are also celebrated in December, traditions different from Santa Claus and Christmas trees. It’s important this time of year to remind each other that respecting the religious holidays of others is part of the holiday season, and most of the time people do, greeting strangers passing on the street “Happy Holidays” rather than “Merry Christmas”.

But respecting religious holidays goes beyond the month of December. We still see anti-Semitism, racism, and xenophobia prevalent in the other months of the year. If we hold ourselves to a standard of respecting religion during the holiday period, why shouldn’t we during the rest of the year?

Additionally, religious holidays that aren’t always celebrated in winter, such as Ramadan, are respected for the most part, but the rest of the year is spent harassing Muslim women for wearing hijabs. The tendencies of racism and hate to arise out of the boundaries of the holiday season are toxic to the diverse society of the United States. All religions deserve to be respected, not just Christianity.

Just as Christmas traditions are so special and meaningful to you, those who celebrate other holidays hold their own traditions in the same way. The respect of other religions should extend farther than only during December.