While most of us are spending the day opening gifts and hanging out with family and friends, some are determined to find everything wrong with Christmas.
According to some on the left, here are five problematic things about Christmas:
Some feminists decided that the tradition of kissing under the mistletoe promotes a “rape culture,” with one feminist Twitter account writing that under the mistletoe, “male misogynistic tendencies to manifest themselves in reality.”
It is likely that the anti-mistletoe campaign started as a prank on feminists, but many feminists actually joined in earnestly.
‘Sexist’ Christmas Songs:
Feminist website Bustle has previously assembled a list of “sexist” Christmas songs. In the article titled, “8 Christmas Songs That Are Totally, Terribly Sexist,” Kadeen Griffins lists classics like, “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” and “Baby It’s Cold Outside.”
She writes that “(s)ome of your favorite Christmas songs are kind of really sexist,” and that these Christmas songs “reek of a bit of antifeminism.”
1. “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer” Has anyone ever actually listened to the lyrics of “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer”? That song is terrible! Thankfully, I don’t hear them playing it on the radio much, but the fact that it’s a novelty song that has been around since the ’70s doesn’t change the fact that it details a poor woman’s drunken death. To my knowledge, Santa doesn’t even get in trouble for it — unless you count in that TV film, wherein Grandma survives and Santa was framed.
Most Offensive Lyric: “It’s not Christmas without Grandma. All the family’s dressed in black. And we just can’t help but wonder, should we open up her gifts or send them back?” Priorities, much?
2. “All I Want For Christmas Is You”
To be fair, I’ve already written a separate article about how “All I Want For Christmas Is You” could stand to be more feminist. And by written a separate article, I mean I rewrote the song entirely. However, despite being one of my personal favorite Christmas songs, I don’t like the idea that the woman narrating the song doesn’t want anything for the holidays except a man — and that she’s relying on another man (Santa Claus) to get the aforementioned man for her.
Most Offensive Lyric: “Santa, won’t you bring me the one I really need? Won’t you please bring my baby to me?”
3. “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus”
The fact that we have an entire song devoted to a woman’s infidelity — with Santa Claus, no less — but no such fun Christmas carol for a guy — despite Mrs. Claus being a thing — really says it all. (And giving this classic Christmas song another listen reveals that there might be something a little more insidious than simple infidelity at play. The child who snuck out of bed and witnessed this alleged instance of cheating apparently thinks it would be hilarious to report this back to Dad… for some reason.)
Most Offensive Lyric: “Oh, what a laugh it would have been if Daddy had only seen Mommy kissing Santa Claus last night!” Um.
4. “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas”
Listen, I understand that it’s a traditional fact that guys like to play with guns and girls like to play with dolls (or something), but we don’t need to reinforce gender stereotypes in our Christmas carols, okay? Update yourself to the modern century, “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas!” Let’s have the boys put aside the pistols and the girls put aside the dolls and roll out some gender neutral gifts, shall we?
Most Offensive Lyric: “A pair of hopalong boots and a pistol that shoots Is the wish of Barney and Ben. Dolls that will talk and will go for a walk is the hope of Janice and Jen.”
5. “Santa Baby”
I mean, the entire song is essentially someone trying to seduce Santa Claus in order to get a bunch of Christmas presents. Male or female — though the song is traditionally sung by females and directly references being a “good girl” — it’s still a bit awkward to be breathily requesting that Santa get you cars and rings because you called him baby. All the women who independent, throw your hands up at me!
Most Offensive Lyric: “Think of all the fun I’ve missed. Think of all the fellas that I haven’t kissed. Next year I could be just as good… if you’d check off my Christmas list.” Sigh.
6. “Twelve Days of Christmas”
o be fair, “Twelve Days of Christmas” and I have always had problems with one another, mainly because when I was a child I had no idea what they were talking about with some of the items my “true love” was giving to me for Christmas. However, now that I am an adult, I realize how weird and awful it is that my true love is sending me people for Christmas, let alone crowds of people. Take back your ten lords a’ leaping, sir! I’m not into slavery.
Most Offensive Lyric: “On the eighth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: eight maids a’ milking…” a.k.a. the exact moment my true love started sending me people.
7. “Santa Tell Me”
“Santa Tell Me” might have only just come out, but, yes, I’m going to call it out for sexism. Don’t get me wrong. I love Ariana Grande’s latest Christmas hit and I’ve listened to it several times since its debut. However, I have to be the one to reiterate something that many Christmas songs don’t seem to realize: you don’t need to be in love with someone, or in a romantic relationship, to feel happy or fulfilled this Christmas. Say it loud, say it proud. Can someone please write a song about that? (Taylor Swift, I’m looking at you.)
Most Offensive Lyric: “Now I need someone to hold, be my fire in the cold.”
8. “Baby It’s Cold Outside”
“Baby It’s Cold Outside” is a Christmas song so problematic that many covers just outright change the lyrics. You know why. You knowwhy. If you don’t know why, let me be the one to ruin this for you: there’s a line that subtly references the female singer being drugged by the male singer. That alone makes the entire song ten times creepier and ten times more sexist than it would be otherwise, hence why that line is frequently removed.
Most Offensive Lyric: “The neighbors might think… (Baby, it’s bad out there.) Say, what’s in this drink? (No cabs to be had out there.)” Cue shuddering.
‘Racist’ Jingle Bells Song:
Boston University professor Kyna Hamill recently wrote about “Jingle Bells” and its supposed racism, Fox News reports.
She writes that the song has “racist origins,” pointing to its performances in blackface from the 1800s.
She also writes, “Although ‘One Horse Open Sleigh,’ for most of its singers and listeners, may have eluded its racialized past and taken its place in the seemingly unproblematic romanticization of a normal ‘white’ Christmas, attention to the circumstances of its performance history enables reflection on its problematic role in the construction of blackness and whiteness in the United States.”
According to a“Religious Diversity and Holidays” memo given to some University of Minnesota students and staff, “bows/wrapped gifts” are not “appropriate.”
Also listed as not appropriate on that list is Santa Claus, bells, doves, and menorahs, The College Fix reports.
Hallmark Christmas movies:
Some have taken issue with Hallmark Christmas movies, as they are full of largely white and straight people.
An article published to Slate.com bleats that the movies, “brim with white heterosexuals who exclusively, emphatically, and endlessly bellow “Merry Christmas” to every lumberjack and labradoodle they pass. They’re centered on beauty-pageant heroines and strong-jawed heroes with white-nationalist haircuts.”
It continued, “There are occasional sightings of Christmas sweater–wearing black people, but they exist only to cheer on the dreams of the white leads, and everyone on Trump’s naughty list—Muslims, gay people, feminists—has never crossed the snowcapped green-screen mountains to taint these quaint Christmas villages. “Santa Just Is White” seems to be etched into every Hallmark movie’s town seal.”
Salon.com also wrote an article about the movies, saying the Hallmark channel gives a “homogeneous view of the holiday,” that’s “leaving minority actors out in the cold.”
In all seriousness, go hangout with your friends and family. Merry Christmas.