A Jewish Perspective on Christmas Culture

Zoe Siamon, Staff Writer

Every year, around mid November, America goes through a visible change. Christmas music starts playing in every store. Christmas lights pop up at every house. Christmas trees in what seems to be every window. It’s unavoidable.The holiday cheer is contagious, so of course everyone gets into the spirit, but that raises the question: What should other religions do?

When it comes to religion, as a general rule, most people just want to be respectful and, in turn, be respected. So where is the line between enjoying a national spirit ad infringing on another religion?

I was raised Jewish, but would still celebrate Christmas every year with just a few gifts. As I got older, I found myself feeling guilty every year when Christmas rolled around. I felt like I was betraying my own religion and imposing on another one. 

It took me a long time to understand that, while the roots of Christmas are of course religious, there is a huge national aspect too. 

So, how do Oakton students react to this issue? Sydney Chen (10) said, “I’m not Christian. My dad is atheist and my mom, well, is confused. I celebrate Christmas though!”

In the end, it comes down to our capitalist society. If stores keep promoting Christmas as a way to increase profit, it will stay national. As long as everyone is respectful, however, there is no harm in allowing everyone to experience the Christmas cheer.