Jettisoning Jesus in Malaysia

Like the Little Drummer Boy, let me bang this drum one more time. In Malaysia, an X-mas open house is being held by the Malaysian government on Saturday. They have asked, however, that all references to Jesus be removed.

Christians make up only 8% of the Malaysian population, so one might not expect great Christmas celebrations there. But can you imagine an Eid festival being held in the US or UK with the authorities saying, “Have a great time, but don’t mention that M. guy”. We liberals do much pouting about the West; we are, however, more religiously tolerant than much of the world. That is something to be cheerful about.

For you secular headlifers out there: I am not calling for compulsory Jesus-loving over Christmas. I don’t care what you do. But don’t let tolerance for other cultures produce intolerance for ours.


  1. Your last point is one of the great questions yet to be resolved for the liberal intelligencia. How can you one the one hand claim to be tolerant of other cultures and hold to a sort of cultural-relativist point of view, but at the same time hold certain things– like women’s rights, anti-slavery, anti-bigotry, etc.– to be absolutes? If culture X finds women to be inferior, who are we to say that they’re wrong if we find no problem with their pagan religion or inferior medical practices?

    So yes, why say that it’s OK to push Eid (or whatever) but not Christmas? I say let the Christians have Christmas. Just not various Biblical pronouncements in our courtrooms, or our teachers leading our students in their prayers. And so on… 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Lance


  2. What I’m getting at with all of this is the horror I felt myself feeling when George Bush’s “Merry Christmas’s” made me feel all warm and fuzzy. “At last”, I thought, “someone in public life who favours the C-word over all this anti-Christian ‘Happy Holidays’ crap”. So, if I feel like that, you can bet millions of others do too. George wins again…. 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>< HREF="" TITLE="ronan at jhu dot edu">Ronan<>


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