“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” caused a stir at a New Hanover County school. A parent complained about the song’s religious reference and got it pulled from her child’s kindergarten Christmas show at Murrayville Elementary School. The song was pulled “because it had the word Christmas in it,” said Rick Holliday, assistant school superintendent. A Jewish mother, who didn’t want her name published, objected to what she called “religious overtones” in the song. So the principal agreed to pull it from the program.
Irony? “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” was written by a Jew, Johnny Marks, who also wrote “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” and “A Holly Jolly Christmas.” As Beckerman notes, Jewish songwriters also wrote or co-wrote such holiday standards as:
Of course, none of these songs is as important as the original Jewish contribution to Christmas, but if the “religious overtones” of Johnny Marks’ innocuous song are enough to shut down a kindergarten Christmas show, let’s not risk an ACLU lawsuit by mentioning that whole Bethlehem-and-the-manger trip.
UPDATE: Roger Simon e-mails:
Very good.. but you forgot about Phil Spector’s Christmas Album…. now that’s my kind of Jew.
Forgot? Who could ever forget Darlene Love and the Wall of Sound behind “Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)”?
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