As we all know from the intense Fox News coverage beginning in mid-November, there is no story more important to our nation than whether people, companies, and towns wish each other "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays." Dubbed the "War on Christmas," Fox has dived headfirst into their perennial campaign to keep their viewers well-informed about who is committing the unforgivable sin of removing the word "Christmas" from the season and thereby somehow hastening the demise of what may be our nation's largest cultural and religious event. Just last week, for example, we were treated to three days of breathless coverage on Fox & Friends about a local parade in Tulsa, OK whose organizers decided to change the name from the "Christmas Parade of Lights" to the "Holiday Parade of Lights." Host Gretchen Carlson, one of the staunchest soldiers in the attempt to defend Christmas from its devious enemies, even thought it was important to note multiple times that the organizers' decision had prompted Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe and the Acres of Love Alpaca Farm to no longer participate in the event.
This morning, however, the War on Christmas took a strange turn. While covering their seasonal party, Fox & Friends Saturday dropped the following bombshell:
On Fox & Friends, following co-host Steve Doocy's remark that "we've got to be tolerant of people who celebrate holidays in December, like Ramadan. ... [Y]ou've got to be tolerant of all people," co-host Gretchen Carlson declared: "I am tolerant. I'm all for free speech and free rights, just not on December 25th."
On his radio show, Bill O'Reilly claimed that retailers Best Buy and Crate & Barrel are "still ordering their people not to say, 'Merry Christmas,' " and that the stores "will fire" employees who do. According to each store's spokesperson, neither retail chain has such a policy.
Bill O'Reilly revived the "war" on Christmas and declared that "[m]aybe the imams who got thrown off the plane [would] shop" at the home furnishings retailer Crate & Barrel because it has a policy of saying "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas." O'Reilly also declared that Christmas is "a secular holiday" that "honors the birth of Jesus. ... And the reason it does is because Jesus was a philosopher," but "you can have a religious connotation to the holiday if you choose to."
Bill O'Reilly once again resurrected his misleading claim that a Wisconsin elementary school "sang a whole different lyric to 'Silent Night,' " erroneously attributing the school's changed lyrics to political correctness. In fact, the new lyrics were merely part of a 1988 Christmas play called The Little Tree's Christmas Gift.
On The O'Reilly Factor, National Public Radio (NPR) senior correspondent and Fox News political analyst Juan Williams commented on late-night talk show host David Letterman's treatment of guest Bill O'Reilly during O'Reilly's appearance on Letterman's program. "It's like someone inviting you into their house and you find out you've been invited in by, you know, John Wayne Gacy, the clown killer," he said.
On CBS' Late Show with David Letterman, Bill O'Reilly resurrected his false claim that a Wisconsin elementary school banned the singing of the Christmas hymn "Silent Night," erroneously attributing the school's changed lyrics to political correctness. In fact, the new lyrics were merely part of a 1988 Christmas play called The Little Tree's Christmas Gift. Later in the interview, Letterman admonished O'Reilly, asserting, "I have the feeling about 60 percent of what you say is crap."
CNN's Reliable Sources highlighted remarks by MSNBC Countdown host Keith Olbermann, who defended his characterization of Fox News host John Gibson as the "Worst Person in the World." Olbermann gave the "award" to Gibson for his comment, first noted by Media Matters, that non-Christians were "following the wrong religion."
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Responding to an unflattering commentary in The New Yorker about Fox News' crusade against the so-called "war" on Christmas, Bill O'Reilly announced that he would add the magazine to his list of "media operations have regularly helped distribute defamation and false information supplied by far left websites."
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