Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Evil Power of Christmas Trees on non-Christians

Merely being in a room with a small Christmas tree causes bad feelings among non-Christians, and even causes Christians to feel "guilty." That's the conclusion of a recent Canadian study on the effects of Christmas tree displays.
Researchers at Simon Fraser University in Canada, found non-Christians feel less self-assured and have fewer positive feelings if a Christmas tree was in the room.
They displayed a single 12 inch tree in room and asked the participants, 77 Christians, and 57 "non-believers," to "fill in questions about themselves" with the tree either in or out of the room. It would be pretty interesting to see exactly what questions were asked. Naturally the researchers in question had no problem drawing sweeping conclusions based on their one highly dubious study of 132 people.
I think if people do care about making a whole range of different kinds of people feel included and respected, then we can make some small changes that would go a long way toward creating a more multicultural or inclusive society.
Really? Why don't we examine every single public display, see what kind of transient feelings they inspire and then base our policies off of those results? I know when I see some piece of lousy public artwork I certainly don't feel included. I guess we need to do away with public art. And since when do displays of any kind have to make people feel "included and respected"? Many displays obviously appeal to certain segments of the population and not to others. That's going to happen, particularly in a large diverse country. Without seeing the questions it's impossible to say for sure, but the evidence suggests that these researchers conducted a study looking for a result to support their preexisting biases.


  1. Oh, for Pete's sake. I'm no more religious than I am the King of Norway, and I love Christmas trees. It's the bi year-end holiday, where we spend time with family, and let people we care about know it by giving them gifts. It's an old American tradition, and I love it.

    People really need to lighten up.

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  3. Animal,

    Yeah, plenty of atheists like Christmas and Christmas trees. It's as much a secular holiday as it is religious. Even Christians recognize that, as you'll often hear whining about "taking the Christ out of Christmas."

  4. I'm offended by even the word 'Christmas' or 'Christmas Tree' and wish you and everyone else would refrain from writing/saying it. Instead, I would suggest 'Happy December' or getting a 'December Tree'.

    That report brings new meaning to the phrase 'preexisting biases'

  5. I'm sure there is already some news organization drawing up new guidelines for avoiding the word "Christmas" and relying on generic holiday substitutions.