Podcast #109 – War on Christmas Special

Wow, this year there really is a War on Christmas!  Nineteen-year-old Mohamed Osman Mohamud, a Somali immigrant, has been arrested for his involvement in plotting to car-bomb the Portland, Oregon Christmas Tree lighting ceremony.  Fortunately it was all part of an FBI sting.

Meanwhile, Advertising Age reports that the War on the War on Christmas is succeeding.  The American Family Association reports that the number of businesses explicitly using “Christmas” in their seasonal sales propaganda is dramatically up.  So no more of this “Happy Holidays” or “Season’s Greetings” baloney–we pagans should know our place.

Plus:  Barack Obama’s Kenyan Grammy is on a pilgrimage to Mecca, and she’s praying that her American grandson will convert to Islam.  With 1 in 5 Americans thinking our president is already a secret Muslim, this can’t be helping.

And as always, we present our Top Five Picks for Holiday Gift-Giving for Nonbelievers:

#5

David:  Make a contribution on a family members’ behalf to the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

John: Make one to the American Atheists’ Todd Stiefel Challenge.

#4

David:  DVD set from the Atheist Alliance International “Darwin’s Legacy” 2009 Convention.

John:  Prejudices: The Complete Series by H. L. Mencken, a two-volume boxed set, from the Library of America, of collected essays by the famed journalist, social critic (and atheist) best known for his acerbic coverage of the Scopes Monkey Trial.

#3

David:  His favorite non-fiction titles this year: Packing for Mars by Mary Roach and C Street by Jeff Sharlet.

John:  Genographic Project Participation Kit–from National Geographic, this allows participants to send in a cheek swab and get an analysis of their deep prehistoric ancestry.

#2

David:  A Year of the Night Sky 2011 Calendar

John:  The Devil in Design: The Krampus Postcards, a collection of Victorian Era illustrations from central Europe highlighting the tradition of Santa’s evil helper.  Complementary titles include Krampus: The Devil of Christmas and Christmas Curiosities.

#1

David:  For older folks and/or technophobes, an iPod, along with assistance in setting it up–including how to download freethought podcasts like ours!

John:  A “Caganer,” part of the centuries-old Catalonian tradition of putting a pooping figurine in the Nativity scene.  No shit.

[Sound clip at the top of the show from the film Love Actually.]

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David continues to produce new installments of the Secular Nation Podcast.

Theme music by Body Found.

Recorded November 27, 2010.  Hosted by John C. Snider and David Driscoll.

To listen to this episode click here.

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