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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Much Ado About Nothing


The Bush haters, getting in some last shots, are crying foul over Mrs. Bush's invitations to a Hanukkah reception at the White House that happened to be adorned a with a Christmas tree (shown above). Check out the loving comments beneath the story linked. Well, okay, I suppose a more appropriate image might have been used but honestly, is this really that big a deal?

Until few years ago, I lived smack in the middle of an orthodox Jewish neighborhood in northern Manhattan. Interestingly, I remember some of my Jewish neighbors wishing me "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Easter" on those particular days, not "Happy Holidays." My next door neighbor, a concentration camp survivor, often invited me over on Christian holidays to sample some of his single-malt scotch. He, like many in the neighborhood, rose early each day to attend 7 A.M. morning prayer at the synagogue across the street. This kind man did justice, loved mercy and walked humbly with his God. Not only did it please him to wish me Merry Christmas, he would thank me when the greeting was returned. Regardless, I am sure none of his neighbors considered him a bad Jew for that and he certainly struck me as godly man.

I suspect most of the people expressing outrage over this minor slip-up are also not the least bit religious. Forgiveness is far easier when you love your God.

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