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I tend to be cynical about many things (although sometimes I surprise myself with my idealism), and try not to take anything I see on the internet at face value. Critical thinking skills are not being taught to our children, and what skills adults have, we aren't using. The emoticon is one example of this--"I'll let you know how to frame what I'm telling you--smiley, frowny, winky, etc.--so you don't have to dope it out for yourself." I didn't realize that Schultz was so popular among JWs, but he's pretty beloved to a lot of people, so it's not a surprise. Largely, Schultz' work reflects middle-class values, and not liking Christmas (despite the legitimacy of holding such beliefs)is most definitely NOT a middle-class value. The idea that "Christmas is a fraud," is a provocative one, and can be examined in a variety of ways. For example,I personally find some merit in the allegation that Christmas is a fraud, but probably for reasons different than your own. While I concede that the Christmas Celebration owes a great deal to pagan rituals, this doesn't diminish from my appreciation of the holiday as honoring the birth of the Savior (Whom I don't believe was born on the 25th of December). However, the increased presence of "Christmas" in stores, TV and other inescapable media coupled with the complete secularization of the holiday seems to me grotesque.
I guess I see this a little differently. When I first encountered this oh-so-clever re-imagining of Schultz' work on StumbleUpon or Facebook, I dismissed it immediately for the sophomoric and misguided stab at Christianity that it is. It's childish, 'easy' and disrespectful (in full disclosure, I've been guilty of all three many times--although not as an anti-Christian antagonist, and will most likely re-offend). The biggest question for me in this regarding the 'rightness' of it (personally, it's offensive, but fortunately, my tastes do not dictate those of the rest of the world), and that depends upon whether this is satire (such as it is) or a deliberate attempt to pass off anti-Christian propaganda as the original work of Charles Schultz. If the latter, then I am very much against the bastardization of any artist's work (let alone that of one of the legends of comic strip art, a vastly under-appreciated and poorly-utilized artform) for the purposes of political propaganda, even for those causes which I champion. Having said that, I don't believe the person who created this intended for it to be taken as Schultz' original work. If this is the case, then the work is satire, which is to my mind legitimate, no matter how distasteful. I must say that prior to reading your very well-reasoned piece, I hadn't thought about the issue. Although as I said I don't BELIEVE that the author's intention was to deceive, you've certainly given me something to think about. I adore satire, but I despise liars. Good work!
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Dec 28, 2011