"The ideologues over at Fox News have decided that to save Christmas, we've got to insist that stores advertise 'Christmas sales,' not holiday sales, and that cards wish people a 'merry Christmas,' not a happy holiday. Behind their moralizing, these folks are trying to use Christmas for petty political purposes. But that's not what the Christmas story is about either. It's about a couple--Mary and Joseph--forced by an oppressive government to leave their home to travel far to be counted in the census. They were homeless in a strange land."--Jesse Jackson, Dec. 20, 2005Jesse, you don't have a political purpose in your remarks?! Let me state my viewpoint. I don't watch Fox News. Heck, I don't pay for cable TV (I'm too cheap!) But just looking at your statement, I can see a couple of problems you may want to address.
Okay, Jesse, stay with me here. You may have heard this before, but this time pay attention:
Luke 2So what do we know about the Holy Family? They had an oppressive government all right, in that we agree. But how did we know it was oppressive? That government wanted to tax them! It wanted to hide that tax with the sham of a census.
1And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.
2(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
But where were did they wind up? In Joseph's own city! I am sure that they felt like strangers, but it was Joseph's ancestral homeland. They stayed there for some time, maybe years, until Herod decided to practice a little retroactive population control. (But that's an issue for a different post.)
And the Christmas story, Jesse? It's not primarily about Joseph and Mary, as you well know. It's about the Incarnation.
I'll give you the same advice I gave Nancy Pelosi: cut the glittering generalities; and speak the Gospel.