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Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays?

It's a debate that now seems to arise every year around this time: Should people use the term "Merry Christmas" or something more generic such as "Happy Holidays" or "Season's Greetings"?

The latter has become popular due to the variety of religious holidays taking place this season, but those who say there is a "War on Christmas" have rallied in recent years, saying people who insist on "Happy Holidays" are being too politically correct. 

Kim Sullivan-Hoffman said on Bellmore Patch's Facebook page that happy holidays and season's greetings covers the full spectrum of holidays and people who celebrate during the winter season.

"Happy Holidays and Season's Greetings covers all bases including New Years and what ever religious celebration you or the person you are wishing well may celebrate," she said.

"Use whatever you want or all," Rebecca O'Newell said on Merrick Patch's Facebook page. "Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah are for specific holidays. The others for the season in general. It's a non Issue or should be!"

Follow the holidays group by clicking here.

Others were adamant about being specific with the holiday that they celebrate.

"If people say happy holidays to me, I tell them "you can wish me a Merry Christmas," Suzanna DeSeve Closs added. 

Which do you prefer? Tell us in the comments section below.

Carisa Giardino contributed to this article.
Tom H December 11, 2012 at 09:49 AM
I celebrate Christmas and usually say "Merry Christmas" to everyone. If I know someone celebrates Hanukkah, I'll wish them a Happy Hanukkah. There are a few people out there who will get offended if you say the wrong one so we've started using broader terms. I think it's fine to say whatever you want. Everyone has their own traditions and is going to phrase their holiday greetings as they see fit. There's no blanket term that isn't going to piss someone off. If someone greets me with "happy holidays," I'll appreciate their nice gesture and carry on with my life. Ms. DeSeve Closs shouldn't be receiving holiday wishes at all if she can't appropriately accept them. I would recommend that she just reply with "Merry Christmas" instead of correcting the person. They'll take the hint. In short, people can say what they want, and others can respond the way they want. Someone saying "happy holidays" doesn't mean they're declaring war on Christmas. They are just trying to be respectful. If you don't like it, don't reply to them. Or better yet, correct their greeting. It will make you look like you have your priorities in order.
Michael Ganci December 11, 2012 at 10:03 AM
Thanks for sharing Tom! What do others think?
Eileen M. December 12, 2012 at 08:46 PM
I feel that Happy Holidays is the way to go. If I know that someone celebrates a specific holiday, I will say Merry Christmas or Happy Hanukkah... But when the gentleman held the door for me at the store , I said Happy Holidays...when my dry cleaner carries my clothes out to the car for me, again, Happy Holidays. After all, it is the "holiday" season. And personally, I would never correct anyone that took the time to wish me a happy anything. I would just say "same to you".


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