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There Is No “War On Christmas,” Unless You Count The Battle For Christian Supremacy

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The Real War is Against Non-Christians

It’s finally (finally!) December and the terribleness that is 2016 is nearly over — but not quite yet. Across the country, folks are pulling their boxes of Christmas decorations out of the basement or the attic, untangling string lights and swearing to themselves they aren’t going to go overboard on the cookies this year. 

Well, most folks are. The rest of us are just sitting here enjoying the twinkling lights and hoping these next few weeks pass pretty quickly.

Christmas isn’t my holiday. I’m very much not a Christian (I’m a decently observant Jew), and aside from a severe jealousy of Christmas lights when I was a kid, I’ve never really been drawn to the holiday. I’ve never really wanted a tree in my house and I’ve never really felt left out. Dec. 25 is just another day for me.

It doesn’t bother me in the slightest — I’m not one of those folks who gets sick of being bombarded by it day in and day out like some of my friends, though I certainly understand their frustrations. 

To be honest, I kind of like how everyone seems to get a little bit nicer this time of year, and not all of the music is bad. “All I Want for Christmas is You” is one of the greatest songs of all time, and more than a few Jewish folks are responsible for the older classics. But acknowledging and accepting that I live in a majority Christian society doesn’t mean I define this as the Christmas season, or that I feel like I’m missing something, or that I care in the slightest whether someone says, “Merry Christmas” or not.

That really pisses some folks off, like America’s least favorite former Congressman, Joe Walsh (pictured): 

For the record, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, and other non-Christians don’t typically celebrate Christmas. What makes Joe’s tweet art, though, is what he said just a few days earlier: 

Ironically, Joe’s right. There’s no guaranteed protection from being offended, but wow, he’s really offended. But my personal favorite came just last night: 

Aside from being factually incorrect, it’s just absurd. If we take away Christmas at this time of year, you know what we have? Another day, just like any other. Dec. 25 would still exist. No catastrophe would take its place and no one would disappear from the Earth because of it. 

(I suppose I shouldn’t go further without acknowledging the other December holidays, but let’s make something clear: Hanukkah is NOT the Jewish Christmas. That it falls around the same time as Christmas is a fluke. Hanukkah was established before Christmas was on the scene and it has absolutely nothing to do with peace and love and goodwill toward all. In fact, if anyone tells you that Hanukkah is about peace and love and goodwill they have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about. Hanukkah celebrates a bloody insurgency against an oppressive, fascist regime in defense of religious freedom. It’s also incredibly low-ranking in the hierarchy of Jewish holidays.) 

Joe Walsh and his friends aren’t fighting a “War on Christmas.” They’re fighting for Christian supremacy. Just like everyone else who publicly decries the lack of enthusiasm about Christmas, Joe Walsh is a Christian supremacist. Joe Walsh hates real religious freedom. Joe hates that there are other religions and he hates that folks are passionate about beliefs he hasn’t personally approved. 

If folks were truly secure in their religious beliefs we’d never, ever hear the phrase “War on Christmas.” If they truly cared about observing their holiday the best way they know how it wouldn’t matter what their neighbors or anyone else did this time of year. 

If you happen to see me and wish me “Merry Christmas,” more times than not I’ll just smile politely and say, “You, too.” I’ll do the same exact thing if you wish me, “Happy holidays,” “Happy Hanukkah,” or any other seasonal greeting, because unlike Joe Walsh, my faith doesn’t depend on the validation of strangers.

Robbie Medwed is an Atlanta-based LGBTQ activist and writer. He’s never really been interested in joining the War on Christmas but is strongly considering it now just to annoy Joe Walsh. His column appears here weekly. Follow him on Twitter: @rjmedwed

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‘Unambiguous Felony’: Trump at Risk in IRS ‘Personal Vendetta’ Audit Investigation – Report

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According to a report from former Assistant U.S. Attorney Mitchell Epner at the Daily Beast, Donald Trump’s legal problems may be growing exponentially because there appears to be evidence he attempted to use the IRS to persecute political enemies before he lost re-election.

At issue, Epner wrote, are accusations from former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly that the former president demanded the IRS look into tax returns filed by, among others, former FBI Director James Comey and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

According to the legal expert, there is already an investigation by the IRS inspector general into the suspicious audits of the two FBI officials, with Epner writing, “As reported earlier this summer, both Comey and McCabe were subjected to highly unusual IRS audits. The odds of an individual randomly being subjected to this type of audit are similar to being struck by lightning. For both to be the subject of special audit by happenstance is about as likely as a whale falling from the sky and landing in the middle of a mountain range.”

As he notes, there is evidence Kelly is willing to provide evidence about Trump’s illegal demand, with Epner writing that “a president who unlawfully seeks to have an individual audited is subject to up to five years in prison. The crime does not require that the IRS actually carry out the audit. The crime is completed with the mere request.”

RELATED: The coming indictment of Donald Trump will break his power: former Obama lawyer

“If Trump made this demand while he was president, that is an unambiguous felony. Section 7217 of Title 26 of the United States Code makes it a crime for the ‘President’ to ‘request, directly or indirectly, any officer or employee of the Internal Revenue Service to conduct or terminate an audit or other investigation of any particular taxpayer with respect to the tax liability of such taxpayer,'” he wrote before adding, “Based on my training and experience as an Assistant U.S. Attorney who prosecuted tax offenses, I expect that each IRS employee along the chain of command kept detailed notes and records of who ordered them to conduct the audit, and on the facts that were cited to support that audit demand. I would not be surprised if each of those IRS employees cooperated with the DOJ, with all fingers pointing in Trump’s direction.”

He concluded that “the nice thing about prosecuting tax crimes is that the crimes are very clearly delineated. Few jurors have any sympathy for people who cheat on their taxes or wrongfully sic the IRS on an individual to carry out a personal vendetta.”

You can read more here.

 

Image by Evan El Amin/Shutterstock

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Trump Complains the ‘Fake News Went Crazy’ With Coverage of His 2-Hour Meeting With Notorious Racist He Won’t Condemn

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On Saturday evening, Donald Trump issued a fourth statement on his meeting with white nationalist Nick Fuentes and once again refused to denounce his racism and anti-Semitism.

Trump posted to his Truth Social account, “so I help a seriously troubled man, who just happens to be black, Ye (Kanye West), who has been decimated in his business and virtually everything else, and who has always been good to me, by allowing his request for a meeting at Mar-a-Lago, alone, so that I can give him very much needed ‘advice.’”

“He shows up with 3 people, two of which I didn’t know, the other a political person who I haven’t seen in years. I told him don’t run for office, a total waste of time, can’t win. Fake News went crazy,” Trump wrote.

Trump’s dinner has already become an issue in the 2024 presidential campaign and could play a role in determining the next Speaker of the House of Representatives. Trump’s ambassador to Israel condemned him dining with “human scum.”

Trump has received harsh headlines.

“Trump criticized for dining with far-right activist Nick Fuentes and rapper Ye,” headlined The Washington Post.

“Trump’s Latest Dinner Guest: Nick Fuentes, White Supremacist,” was The New York Times headline.

“Trump world reels after white nationalist dinner,” headlined Politico playbook.

“Trump’s former US ambassador to Israel blasts meeting with Ye, Nick Fuentes: ‘You are better than this,'” Fox News headlined.

NBC News headlined, “‘F—ing nightmare’: Trump team does damage control after he dines with Ye and white supremacist Nick Fuentes”

READ MORE: Trump’s Dinner With Kanye Also Included a Former Aide Accused in Pay-for-Pardon Play, and White Supremacist Fuentes

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‘Poisonous’: Former Advisor Says Republicans Have ‘Just Switched Trump Off in Their Brain’

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In an interview with The Guardian, one of Donald Trump’s former senior advisers stated that the word he is getting from people he has spoken to is that they want the former president to be put out to pasture after the poor midterm election results for Republicans weeks ago.

According to John Bolton, who served as Trump’s national security adviser, it’s time for the GOP to move on from the former president if the party wants to reclaim the Oval Office in 2024.

Bolton, whose tenure serving under Trump ended acrimoniously, told the Guardian’s David Smith that there are a multitude of reasons to put Trump in the rearview mirror, but the impact that the former president had on GOP fortunes in the midterms seems to be the final straw with many conservatives.

“There are a lot of reasons to be against Trump being the nominee but the one I’m hearing now as I call around the country, talking to my supporters and others about what happened on 8 November, is the number of people who have just switched Trump off in their brain,” Bolton explained.

ALSO IN THE NEWS: Trump’s new Mar-a-Lago scandal proves why aides want him to stick to a teleprompter

Elaborating, he continued, “Even if they loved his style, loved his approach, loved his policies, loved everything about him, they don’t want to lose and the fear is, given the results on 8 November, that if he got the nomination, not only would he lose the general election, but he would take an awful lot of Republican candidates down with him.”

“There’s no doubt Trump’s endorsement in the primary can be very valuable to a candidate in the Republican party. But relying on that endorsement or trumpeting yourself as the Trump-endorsed candidate is poisonous in the general election. So if you actually want to win elections, Trump is not the answer,” Bolton continued. “William F Buckley [the conservative author] once had a rule that in Republican primaries he supported the most conservative candidate capable of winning the general election and, under that theory, Trump loses.”

The Guardian’s Smith notes that Bolton “… joins Trump’s vice-president Mike Pence, secretary of state Mike Pompeo, attorney general William Barr, UN ambassador Nikki Haley, chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and onetime ally Chris Christie in a growing rebellion among alumni making the case – overtly or subtly – that Trump has become an electoral liability.”

You can read more here.

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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