Don't get me wrong, I respect and admire those serving in the military and the the families who also share the sacrifices when members are serving, or who have suffered the loss of a family member while in service to America.
But a military themed Christmas that's been cooked up by the White House strikes me as a strange.
From the White House website:
“When visitors arrive, the very first thing they’ll see is a tree decorated to pay tribute to our Armed Forces," (Mrs. Obama) said. "This tree, graced with special Gold Star ornaments, tells the story of some of our greatest heroes: Those who gave their lives for our country. And any Gold Star family who visits the White House can create their own ornament to honor their loved one.”
The Blue Room also honors our military families. It holds the Official White House Christmas Tree, presented from the National Christmas Tree Association standing at 18 1⁄2 feet high and nearly 11 feet wide. According to the First Lady, the Blue Room tree is “dedicated to the idea of gathering around our military. The tree in that room is decorated with holiday greeting cards drawn by military children from bases all across the country as a way to celebrate their parents’ service.”Much as I love and respect those who serve, Christmas is not about gathering around the military or paying tribute to our armed forces.
There was a time that the White House actually actually referenced Christ when celebrating Christmas, and acknowledged the traditional meaning of the holiday.
Here's an excerpt from Ronald Reagan's 1981 Christmas address:
Some celebrate Christmas as the birthday of a great and good philosopher and teacher. Others of us believe in the divinity of the child born in Bethlehem, that he was and is the promised Prince of Peace. Yes, we've questioned why he who could perform miracles chose to come among us as a helpless babe, but maybe that was his first miracle, his first great lesson that we should learn to care for one another.
Tonight, in millions of American homes, the glow of the Christmas tree is a reflection of the love Jesus taught us. Like the shepherds and wise men of that first Christmas, we Americans have always tried to follow a higher light, a star, if you will. At lonely campfire vigils along the frontier, in the darkest days of the Great Depression, through war and peace, the twin beacons of faith and freedom have brightened the American sky. At times our footsteps may have faltered, but trusting in God's help, we've never lost our way.
Just across the way from the White House stand the two great emblems of the holiday season: a Menorah, symbolizing the Jewish festival of Hanukkah, and the National Christmas Tree, a beautiful towering blue spruce from Pennsylvania. Like the National Christmas Tree, our country is a living, growing thing planted in rich American soil. Only our devoted care can bring it to full flower. So, let this holiday season be for us a time of rededication.Back to the Obamas for a sec. They seem to blur a lot of lines this Christmas. More than usual.
It's as if they rolled Memorial Day, Gold Star Mothers Day, and Christmas all into one before jetting off to play on the beaches and golf courses of Hawaii.
Strikes me as just another anecdotal example reflecting how little the Obamas understand or respect the traditional American experience, let alone the American Christmas holiday.