December 15, 2004


Fox News Airs Religious Christmas Messages: Critics are wowed and shocked that the network isn't afraid to say anything other than "Happy Holidays." (Terry Phillips, 12/15/04, Fox News)

In a startling departure from the political correctness on much of network television, the Fox News Channel is running Christmas greetings with Bible verses. One references John 3:16, another displays the prediction of Christ's birth from Isaiah.

Perhaps even more surprising, critics love them.

"I think they're beautifully done," said Sherry Gossett of Accuracy in Media. "I'm thinking of one I saw (which) had a painting by the Renaissance artist Botticelli, of Mary and Jesus surrounded by other figures. I think it's a lovely gesture." [...]

Judging by the reaction, you might wonder why the other networks don't buck the PC trend of ignoring what we celebrate on Dec. 25. Tim Graham, at the Media Research Center, has an idea.

"For some reason, in America today, being for the flag is conservative," he said. "Being for John 3:16 is conservative."

That still doesn't explain why the networks aren't trying to appeal to 70% of their viewers.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 15, 2004 8:13 PM

I have never understood the notion that I, as a secular Jew, should somehow be offended by Christianity in the public square of a nation where the vast majority of the people are Christian. It has always seemed to me that their ability to express their religion makes it easier for me to express mine. As a historian of Jewish life in the American South, Eli Evans, has said,'It didn't matter to Southerners what church you went to, even if it was the Jewish 'church', so long as you went to one.'

Posted by: Bart at December 15, 2004 9:31 PM

Perhaps the networks could run ads of a nativity scene with Dan, Peter, and Tom as the Three Wise Men.

Kind of a tri-fecta, eh?

Posted by: ratbert at December 16, 2004 12:01 AM


Years ago I saw an excellent play (whose title escapes me) about a Jewish family in the American South, which made your point (and poignantly so).

Posted by: Fred Jacobsen (San Fran) at December 16, 2004 12:15 AM

"That still doesn't explain why the networks aren't trying to appeal to 70% of their viewers."

The answer is simple -- they don't understand the 70%. Q.E.D.

Posted by: jd watson at December 16, 2004 3:02 AM

I wonder how well OJ understands them. He seems to think that being nominally a Christian means that you want the media to wrap all it's content in a Christian context, and will boycott all stations that don't. I'd say a good 50% of that 70% isn't even paying attention enough to notice that some stations never mention Christmas by name but refer to it as the Holidays, nor care. As long as they get their next installment of Survivor or My Big Fat Obnoxious Mother In Law or Desperate Housewives in Heat they're happy.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at December 16, 2004 4:20 AM

Bart's got it. When I was living in a predominantly Buhddist country a few years ago, I may have thought that my neighbors would have been better off if they were to accept Christ, but failing that, my fervent wish was for them to be the very best Buhddists who ever walked the face of the earth, particularly with respect to honesty and kindness to strangers.

Posted by: Lou Gots at December 16, 2004 6:10 AM

This "Happy Holidays" nonsense is part PC BS and part a desire by business to strip Christmas of its' religious meaning so they can get the non-religious and non-Christians to treat it as an essentially secular holiday and thus shift more of the crap they have to offer.

Good for Fox.

Posted by: Ali Choudhury at December 16, 2004 6:59 AM


Going to your kids' Christmas concert at school this week?

Posted by: oj at December 16, 2004 7:49 AM

That was two weeks ago.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at December 16, 2004 12:02 PM

Next week is the Winter Solstice human sacrifice and orgy.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at December 16, 2004 12:15 PM