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Christmas Shopping Brings Out the Spirit of Giving for the Holidays

December 11, 2019
Adam Kelly - Ediot Emeritus , Tyler Star News

Another Christmas shopping season is upon us.

I love it.

It's after Thanksgiving now, the season intended for the great American annual buying spree. Oh, some stores have strung through the aisles since before Halloween and the first Yule catalogues began arriving in September. But these don't count.

Now is the season.

Main streets in little towns glow with lights, bells, stars, sleighs, magically transforming the humdrum into strange excitement. There are songs in the air and stars in the sky. I love it.

The stores are crowded with shoppers seeking that perfect gift. Most of their faces wear smiles and good manners and courtesy and far more in evidence than at any other time of the year. The parking lots are jammed. It takes forever to get verification on a credit card purchase. There's a long line of children and parents waiting their turn with Santa. It's a great time of year. I love it.

Nothing modern Scrooges do or say can diminish my enjoyment. Too commercialized some say concerning the Christmas season. Phooey! Say I.

We shouldn't be spending so much money for gifts when there are hungry and homeless, the sanctimonious SCROOGES say. And again I respond, phooey!

This is the season for giving and getting of gifts. American businesses have long recognized this fact of economic life. Successful ones meet the Christmas season shopping needs of American consumers. For my part, I enjoy seeing stores filled with all kinds of potential presents, thus letting me choose from many hundreds of items. Christmas season too commercial? Not in my book. I love it the way it is.

Would-be spoiled sports trying to lay a guilt trip on me for enjoying myself so immensely during these days of Christmas may as well save their breath. I do not want the little children of Africa to go hungry during the Christmas season or any other time. It would be nice if all the homeless folk in America had a good house in which to live at this Christmas season and at every season.

It also would be very nice, indeed, if all the homeless folk in America who were physically able to work, took jobs and provided a roof over their heads for themselves.

And it also would be nice if all this country's dope addicts who are homeless kicked their nasty habits and settled into productive lives. Neither is going to happen, of course.

A little guilt feeling does have a salutary effect on charitable contributions of course. Soon after West Virginia got into the liquor business, alms seekers discovered that the outside of state stores was a veritable bonanza. Miners in the southern coal fields were forced to run a gauntlet of charitable causes when they came to town to buy a fifth. The concept of buying booze legally and publicly was new enough at the time to make most liquor purchasers somewhat sheepish about doing so. These tended to contribute heavily in their haste to leave the premises, clutching brown sacks to their bosom.

But it's no use trying to make me feel guilty about what Americans spend on Christmas. We are the kindest, most generous, open handed compassionate people on the face of the globe, Twice, Americans literally have kept half the world from starving to death. Do-gooders always want to upset us in the Christmas season, simply because others in the world don's have as much as we do. It won't work.

Of course I know, as do most Americans that, observance of Christmas must be religious and not secular in nature. But as a Christian, I find nothing offensive to my faith in buying and wrapping gifts for those whom I love.

In the next few days you may encounter an elderly gentleman merrily wending his way through the crowded aisles of a department store, arms loaded with packages, whistling, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," with a happy smile adorning his face. It might be Santa in disguise. It might be me. For, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. And I love it.

 
 
 

 

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