bias, prejudice, and Christmas

To picture Christmas
is to see Christmas trees—
and picking one out on a snow-covered Christmas tree lot.
It’s to think of frost on window panes
and icicles hanging from the roof.
It’s to sing, “I’m dreaming of a white christmas”—
“walking in a winter wonderland,” “sleigh ride,” “jingle bells”—
imagery and song
determined not by the season,
but by the Northern Hemisphere.

For in the Southern Hemisphere
(half the world, mind you),
Christmas falls in the heat of summer—
right after the summer solstice.

Nothing wrong with our celebrating—
our imagery, our decorations and songs.
Certainly not wanting to suggest we don’t celebrate—
or even that we celebrate differently than we do,
but maybe wanting to suggest
that we hear within our celebrating
the limitations of our experience and thus our perspective—

the bigger picture that is more truth than just ours—

that as we celebrate our Christmas lights in late afternoon/early evening darkness,
we’re mindful that some celebrate Christmas light
as the light of the sun into the late night hours.

Bias is perspective that doesn’t know it is,
and prejudice is rejection on the basis of bias
with some fear thrown in
that is the premonition of bias
before it’s recognized.

And Christmas, truth be known,
come winter or come summer,
always has more to do with truth come—
truth be known—
than with winter come.

Christmas has more to do with bias named
and prejudice both revealed and rejected
than with any one perspective on anything.

No one should ever think it’s Christmas they celebrate
in unnamed bias
and in prejudice.

It’s not.
It can’t be.
Not Christmas.
No mas.


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