I bristled when I overheard a friend place the evidence for Jesus and Santa on a par. I felt it was patently unfair to Santa.
Don’t get me wrong. I am no fan of Christmas. For all I care, the likes of Santa, Jesus, decorations, and Paul McCartney’s “Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time” can disappear down a bottomless chimney where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. Chances are the worm would send the McCartney song right back up, but it’s worth a try.
This being Free Inquiry and all, I’d love to tell you that my no-fan-of-Christmas-ness derives from a personal secular humanist moral code. I suppose it does philosophically, but its emotional origin lies in childhood memories of mandatory participation in the “Gather ‘Round the Tree and Pretend We’re a Functional Family” game. Even today, I must work not to let the inescapable trappings of the season propel me into a funk.