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November 24, 2005

US Post Office goes Politically Correct - Updated

No welcome at the officeAbout four hours ago - after the turkey carcass was put away and we sat around the dining table sipping hot coffee and finishing the pie crumbs off our plates - my mother riveted all attention on her as she related her experience with US Post Office.

As has been her custom for as long as I can remember, my mom prepares her Christmas cards over the Thanksgiving weekend in order to have them ready to mail the first week of December. She enjoys purchasing beautiful cards, writing notes, addressing them by hand and affixing whatever Christmas stamp the USPS issues that year. So she stops by her local US Post Office a few days ago then asks the man behind the counter for this year's Christmas stamps. He pulls out a sheet of something called Holiday Cookies. To know my mom is to know that she has never indulged in cutesy stuff. Every year she always selects the Christmas stamp that features a classic painting of Madonna and Child. She asks if they have any classic Christmas stamps and the man pulls out a couple of sheets of last year's Madonna and Child. Mom notices he doesn't seem happy and he says to her, "These are all I have and they'll be the last you ever see." Mom asks, "What do you mean?" He explains the USPS will not be issuing any more "religious" stamps.


Mom is momentarily stunned. She then raises her eyebrows a bit and asks, "Are you allowed to say 'Merry Christmas' to us?"

The man's face falls and he lowers his voice in answer, "No. We can only say 'Happy Holidays,'" he tries to smile at her, "But if you say 'Merry Christmas' to me directly I will respond in kind."

WTF? Something so innocuous as a Christmas postage stamp has now very quietly given way to near meaningless "Holiday" fluff? Reading over the USPS Press Releases about the Cookie stamps and I am annoyed at the tortuous language used in an effort to avoid the dreaded "C" word

The season kicks off on Oct. 20 with the dedication of the 2005 holiday stamps, celebrating the child in everyone and evoking favorite memories from the simple pleasure of decorating cookies of the season. The stamps, featuring cookie-shaped gingerbread men, Santa Claus, snowmen and an angel, will be dedicated at a special ceremony in the Pillsbury Test Kitchens in Minneapolis. Anita Bizzotto, USPS Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, will be the dedicating official.

"What would the holidays be without cookies? These cookie stamps are a great way to share the joy of the season," Bizzotto said.

Geez, and what season would that be, eh?

Last year's Christmas (as well as Hanukkah and Kwanzaa) stamp is currently available, but if the employee at my mother's US Post Office is right, you won't be seeing any new issues.

I plan on checking this with my local Post Office tomorrow. I urge you, too, to take a few minutes and ask at your local PO.

UPDATE One of the commenters offers a link to a stamp site that lists a possible release of a Madonna & Child stamp for 2006. But neither a reader of Michelle nor I could confirm it yesterday. Like Reader Mary M., I called the customer service line and got what can only be called as an ambiguous answer on whether "religious" stamps will be issued in the future. What I am going to have to do is go to my local PO and see what a counter person may tell me in person. They might be more comfortable than wondering if their phone is being monitored.

Posted by Darleen at November 24, 2005 07:54 PM


In the past they haven't issued the Madonna stamps every year. They came out in 98, 99, 2001 and 2004. It may just be that this is an off year--in part because we haven't had a rate change on stamps since last year. Here's the page with the list of stamps issued every year: http://shop.usps.com/cgi-bin/vsbv/postal_store_non_ssl/browse_content/indexStampIssues.jsp

Posted by: Ann at November 25, 2005 08:07 AM

FYI, the Madonna Stamps can still be ordered online at the usps.gov site:


Posted by: Roleigh Martin at November 25, 2005 08:21 AM

You may notice I did link to the USPS site and I noted that last year's stamps were still available.

What needs to be checked out is the USPS employee claim to my mom that once the 2004 stamps are gone, that's it. There will be no Madonna & Child stamps ever again.

Posted by: Darleen at November 25, 2005 08:23 AM

It would be interesting to find out just how many Americans are wondering where their country was higgjacked off to? I thought we had elected a conservative President and Congress, one that would recognize the honesty and tolerance inherent in allowing people to celebrate the holidays and beliefs they hold dear.
Frankly i have to ask that if a Conservative government is tolerating the theft of our culture and its censorship from the public square, what would be the difference in a liberal government's approach?
To me, the assault by public schools and other government agencies on the free expression of religious symbols bodes nothing but bad for our future. The censorship will not achieve what they desire, so inevitably the anti-freedom forces imposing this will resort to more and more oppressive and ridiculous measures. Censoring stamps with religious art on them is certainly evidence of the ridiculous nature of this kind of censorship.

Posted by: hunter at November 25, 2005 08:28 AM

Make your own USPS stamps at http://photo.stamps.com/PhotoStamps/?source=si10963291

Bypass the PC ban on Christianity by making your own.

Posted by: Jeff Mahan at November 25, 2005 08:29 AM

I just emailed the USPS and asked them if this is true. We'll see what they say...

Posted by: Kierstin Bible at November 25, 2005 10:13 AM

What in the world ever gave anyone the idea we elected a conservative president? Neither George HW Bush nor George W Bush are conservatives - they are moderates.

The ONLY reason I voted for either of them was the alternative was too horrible to think about. I suspect many conservative/libertarian voters would agree.

Posted by: Bruce at November 25, 2005 01:21 PM

Hey Hunter, took your advice.

Mine will be saying "screw Islam, Merry Christmas!

Posted by: Strange1 at November 25, 2005 06:19 PM

Oops my bad, meant to respond to Jeff Mahan

Posted by: Strange1 at November 25, 2005 06:21 PM

Poor uneducated faux Christ followers. Stop believing in your fantasy world and give the pagans back their holiday. Then maybe we can talk truth about this whole easter fable that took also misappropriates reality.

Your god is not superior in this country any more than mine is. If you don't like it, get out, otherwise shut your patheteic wannabe martyr whining. You just look stupid.
Sic Semper Tyrannus

Posted by: Jesus Is A Myth at November 25, 2005 06:50 PM

No Christmas stamps, then no Christmas gifts for the postmen.

Ending one tradition should end the other.

Posted by: Neo at November 25, 2005 06:55 PM

I certainly do sympathise with you. It's terrible to gave all your illusions shatetred, isn't it?

I felt much the same way when I figured out that G W Bush isn't really a christian.

Posted by: Lurch at November 25, 2005 08:04 PM

"What would the holidays be without cookies?"

What would they be without the Madonna and Child, for crying out loud?!

Posted by: conservatismo at November 25, 2005 09:33 PM

Yeah, I got the cookie stamps, too.

Love 'em.

Was getting tired of having a Madonna stamp forced on me, but I"m sure your Mom didn't mind that happening.

Posted by: 16 at November 25, 2005 10:21 PM

To "Neo"

Posted by: conservatismo at November 26, 2005 12:05 AM

To "Neo"

Posted by: conservatismo at November 26, 2005 12:05 AM

To "Neo"

And what, may one ask, led you to conclude that George W. Bush is not at Christian?

Posted by: conservatismo at November 26, 2005 12:05 AM

Strange1, we will pray for you.

Deus est Semper Fedilis.

Posted by: conservatismo at November 26, 2005 12:08 AM

Two days ago I stopped by the Post Office and asked for Christmas Stamps. I was offered the Cookie Stamps and also a sheet of last year's Madonna and Child stamps. I asked for this year's, instead. The clerk had to go into the back room to get them (perhaps she had sold all of hers) but I happily purchased 120 US Postal Service 2005 Madonna and Child Christmas Stamps.

No problem.

Posted by: Bird of Paradise at November 26, 2005 12:10 AM

"Poor uneducated faux Christ followers. Stop believing in your fantasy world and give the pagans back their holiday...."

I used to belong to a very dangerous "Christian" cult that taught that Christmas should not be celebrated because it is a "pagan" holiday. I escaped from the clutches of the cult and I no longer believe in Christianity. Nor am I a pagan. But, I have come to enjoy Christmas very much. Yes, I studied the background of Christmas and intellectually I can explain that it originated with the Roman pagans....blah blah blah. Who cares. I certainly don't.

I enjoy Christmas because it is a time to reconnect with family and friends and show them that I love them. I enjoy Christmas because it is a time to feel happy and go out of one's way to show love. Yes, I know, we can do this anytime.

I'm not religious, not a Christian, and not a pagan, yet I get quite a lot out of Christmas and enjoy it very much.

Who gives the leftists the right to take this away from me? If they don't want to celebrate Christmas then they don't have to.

I think it is time that we started standing up to these fascists.

Posted by: steve at November 26, 2005 12:29 AM

Spread the message - Simple answer - do not buy any Christmas stamps. Use the great Old Glory stamps. I am sure the ever watchfull marketting gurus at USPS will notice for 2006.

Posted by: davod at November 26, 2005 12:37 AM

You can email President Bush, VP Cheney, the Speaker of the House and Senate Majority Leader from my eclectic homepage. The address is http://www.geocities.com/capitolhill/8889

Posted by: Steve at November 26, 2005 02:38 AM

Looks like the USPS is NOT dropping the Madonna. Scott's http://www.scottonline.com/NewsandNotes/NN_issues2006.asp shows a Madonna stamp planned for 2006. Sometimes there is enough unsold inventory from the previous year that a new Madonna isn't issued. It's happened before.

Move along folks, nothing to see here.

Posted by: Raging Moderate at November 26, 2005 06:06 AM

Who gives the leftists the right to take this away from me? If they don't want to celebrate Christmas then they don't have to

Based on your previous sentences it doesn't sound like anyone is taking your commercialized enjoyment of the shopping day away. Just sounds like you have no concrete ideals or morals. You sound more like a secularist than any "leftist" does.

To others if you still believe GWB is a christian, I've got a fellow in a red suit who lives at the North Pole I'd like to introduce you to. Do you get it? It's a costume, and only children and the simpleminded don't understand that. Keep putting your faith in a man who uses your religion as his own when it's convenient, but then manages to ignore the basic tenents when it gets in the way of his self-aggrandizement. You're being used faux christians, but then you don't really believe in the teachings of christ either, now do you? You know, love thy neighbor, and all that kindness and compassion crap.

Posted by: Jesus Is A Myth at November 26, 2005 06:41 AM

The Virtual Stamp Club (http://www.virtualstampclub.com/2006intro.html) also said that the USPS presented the new 2006 Madonna stamp at a stamp convention in August. There will also be a reissue of the Eid and Hanaukkah stamps in 2006.

Posted by: Ann at November 26, 2005 08:03 AM

Congratulations to Darlene for standing up against those who are doing all they can to drive the Judeo-Christian religion out of America's public places. Add to this, the decades of lowering the standards of education and behavior, and the followers of Antonio Gramsci are in full swing to change the Republic created by our founding fathers into a European type of Democracy, similar to France,Spain or even Canada.

Posted by: indiolee at November 26, 2005 08:03 AM

Doesn't anyone ever get embarrassed at this victimization psychology? It's really getting silly. Here's one from last year:
Post Office Treats Christmas Stamp Like Pornography; Sells It from 'Under the Counter'

Versions of the Madonna & Child stamps are the only "classic" religious stamps the USPS has issued at Christmas in the last 40 years, they don't do it every year, and the 2004 stamps are still on sale. There has been no USPS directive that the 2004 stamp will be the last or anything like it, and in fact, the USPS will be releasing a new Madonna and Child with Bird, by Ignacio Chacon, for Christmas 2006.

The only thing different in the past few years has been the vehement outcry that "secular" Christmas stamps take the "Christianity out of Christmas"— yet one more absurd victimization complaint.

[Darleen says: R, I hope you look at my update. And I will state again, the employee at my mother's local post office told her explicitly that no NEW "religious" stamps would be issued, not that 2004's Madonna and Child was pulled. I haven't been able to confirm or deny that the 2006 stamp you listed is really going to be issued. My mother was so stunned I felt it important to share both her story and ask that people check with their own local PO's to find out. I'm not a 'religious' person myself, but heck how can anyone more than 30 years old NOT see the hostility towards observant Christians?]

Posted by: R. Porrofatto at November 26, 2005 08:22 AM

The hostility toward observant Christians?

They don't have any stamps for atheists or agnostics either! Wahhhh! I feel excluded and oppressed!

[Darleen says: You kinda prove my point.]

Posted by: the valrus at November 26, 2005 09:18 AM

That hostility has nothing to do with the petulant conspiracy-mongering exhibited here, oh no.

Do you really think the USPS would be so stupid as to no longer produce one of its best moneymaking stamps? Jesus Christ--'s mom!

Posted by: Jim Anderson at November 26, 2005 09:41 AM

This is certainly quite encouraging. It's nice that you religious fundamentalists are losing. It also seems to be the way history treats those without coherent beliefs (I mean, "I believe that there's this big guy with a beard up in the clouds who's omnipotent, and I believe this without *any* evidence" - you realise, right, how stupid and incoherent that sounds?).

Posted by: Ah well.. at November 26, 2005 10:03 AM

Blow me.

For publishing unverified speech leading to hatred between groups, you can blow me.

(Lowering my voice) blow me.

Posted by: jerry at November 26, 2005 10:10 AM

There is no war on Christmas. However, there is a popular myth of a war on Christmas, assembled out of urban legends, exaggerated anecdotes, and a need of some Christians, despite being an overwhelminingly dominant political and cultural force, to feel persecuted.

How much government support of Christianity do people need before they stop crying persecution? No one can be elected to high government office without proclaiming their Christianity. The Mint already stamps Christian slogans on all of our money, ensuring that almost everyone in the US, Christian or not, carries Chrstian slogans with them daily. Is Chrsistianity really so frail that it needs the US Post Office to print its propaganda too?

Posted by: John Bagley at November 26, 2005 10:32 AM

As a couple of people on one of the trackback sites point out:

1. Presbyterians in Scottland **banned** Christmas in the 17th century.

2. Then there was this: "After Oliver Cromwell's Puritans took over England in 1645, the observance of Christmas was prohibited in 1652 as part of a Puritan effort to rid the country of decadence."

3. And this: "The Pilgrims, a group of Puritanical English separatists who came to North America in 1620, also disapproved of Christmas, and as a result it was not a holiday in New England. The celebration of Christmas was actually outlawed from 1659 to 1681 in Boston, a prohibition enforced with a fine of five shillings. The English of the Jamestown settlement and the Dutch of New Amsterdam, on the other hand, celebrated the occasion freely. Christmas fell out of favor again after the American Revolution, as it was considered an "English custom." Interest was revived by Washington Irving's Christmas stories, German immigrants, and the homecomings of the Civil War years. December 25 was declared a federal holiday in the United States on June 26, 1870."

That's right, early America considered it an "English" holiday, not a Christian one, so banned it for years. You will notice too that most of the attacks against it have been conservative 'religious' people attacking it, not atheist liberals.

As PZ, an atheist, puts it:

"In a few weeks, this atheist's war on Christmas will begin in earnest when I take the family out to the local tree farm, pick out a fine Christmas tree, take a sleigh ride, and drink hot apple cider in an old barn with a bunch of other anarchists. It will culminate with presents under the tree and a big dinner and happy phone calls to all the relatives scattered around the country. Thus will the moral rectitude of our nation be undermined."

Or in other words, shut the @#$#$ up, or at least figure out who was responsible and deal with them, instead of throwing your stones randomly at everyone you *think* is somehow guilty of these kinds of things. And just to be clear, I find all forms of idolitry offensive, especially because I am not religious and can't make up stupid excuses for why a @#$@#$ stamp is sacred, but its perfectly OK to abuse, attack and persecute my fellow man, because they don't believe the same things as me. The only true Christians I have ever met in my life are the ones that threw their Bibles away, rejected the church and stopped pissing on everyone some priest told them they should hate. Oh sorry, what ever "sin" of that person they are told to hate, never mind that it results in the same pain, fear and injustice. Can't you people get your heads out of each others asses at *least* once a year, especially during the season your not supposed to be pulling this crap?

Never mind, I know the answer to that, its, "No!"

Posted by: Kagehi at November 26, 2005 10:49 AM

Wow, I wondered if I'd see this topic hit the blogosphere. I went to the post office last week to buy my Christmas stamps. On the board I saw a Hannukah stamp and a Happy Kwanza stamp -- I didn't see a Christmas stamp though... When I asked the clerk where the Christmas stamps were, he pointed at the snowman and cookie stamps. Ugh. Anyone who thinks Chritianity isn't under fire is blind.

Posted by: digipaws at November 26, 2005 10:56 AM

Got to tell ya, if I had a "place" that was named after me, I wouldn't decorate it with lies, smears and innuendo.

But hey chick, whatever floats your boat, eh?

Posted by: jerry at November 26, 2005 11:01 AM

Anyone who thinks Chritianity isn't under fire is blind. Anyone who thinks the USA isn't under fire is blind. Anyone who thinks Microsoft isn't under fire is blind. It's tough being the dominant establishment with all the power, isn't it?

Posted by: the valrus at November 26, 2005 11:21 AM

[Darleen says: You kinda prove my point.]

You kinda ignore mine.

Posted by: the valrus at November 26, 2005 11:23 AM

So, it turns out that the Post Office has issued no such edicts. I suppose that guy at the local PO was just trying to keep your mother happy, giving her the answers she expected, and not necessarily the ones that were accurate.

But you have a higher duty to the facts as a blogger, don't you?

Facts are that the Madonna stamps aren't produced every year -- never have been. Facts are that there is no ban on religious stamps, never has been. Facts are that there is no ban on saying "Merry Christmas," or "Happy Hanukkah," or "Joyful Eid," or "Kool KWANZAA," or anything.

But don't let the facts get in the way of your feeling persecuted. That's the real plot of the Evil One, to distract you with silly concerns that have no basis, in order that the stealing of your rights, privileges, and heritage can proceed without your complaint. You don't have to play the dupe, of course -- but I'll bet you won't thank me for giving you the facts, either.

Will you tell your mother?

Posted by: Ed Darrell at November 26, 2005 01:27 PM

Astonishing, the echo chamber effect here. 1) Blogger writes immediately falsifiable, empirically erroneous pity screed. 2) Blog readers engage in much rending of garments and tearing of hair in their overweening self-righteousness regarding something that never happened. You wonder why Christians are taken less and less seriously?

Get a clue, folks.

Posted by: domovoi at November 26, 2005 02:06 PM

Guess what... Not everybody celebrates Christmas! Surprise! When I went to the post office last week and asked for the Christmas stamps, they showed me 2 sets: The cookies, and the madonna and child. I picked the cookies. And, I'll pick that type every time. Christmas is about lights and gifts and Santa Claus to me. I'm an atheist. So, these are the things I like about this time of year.

Posted by: Phil at November 26, 2005 03:08 PM

Hey, how about you rip pages out of your Bible and put some Elmer's glue on the back to make your own stamp. Use the part in the Bible where it says "Thou shalt not be a royal dipstick or otherwise a lame wad."

Stick it to The Man!

Posted by: WK at November 26, 2005 05:54 PM

- Ahhh.... the words of the rebel, the "poor little guy" myth, jousting with the evils of the system that puts the shoes on his feet and the food in his mouth. Well WK, and to all you "elitist" Aethists out there that insist its mature and intelligent to laugh in the face of our mutual mortality, maybe when your time comes you can just look in the face of "The Man", and simply say...."Oh..... that was a mistake... I didn't REALLY mean it...". *chuckle*

Posted by: Big Bang Hunter at November 26, 2005 11:13 PM

To those who are enjoying the sight of "Christians with egg on their faces", being caught out at promoting a false idea about the government, insisting Christianity is dominant and needs a good comeuppance, I have this to say, "You're missing the point."

The point is, there is a very powerful effort in this country to force people of all faiths, or lack thereof, to censor themselves. They want everyone to become bland, boring and predictible, to fall in line at holiday time and bleat "happy holidays" while we shell out big bucks for silly trinkets. And if we're not content to do that, they want the power to force us.

It isn't a question of whose beliefs are dominant, or of having the government promote the dominant faith. It is a question of freedom - freedom of religion, and freedom of speech. Why is it appropriate for a bunch of hand-wringers to decide a long-standing tradition is offensive and thereby decree that it should come to an end? Why would you support the ACLU as they strong-arm one city government after another with threats of lawsuit, when their entire aim is to muzzle the free speech of our citizens?

Whether you support Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Saturnalia or nothing at all, you should be supporting your neighbors' freedom to celebrate their traditions and fight any attempt to quash the free exercise clause. After all, you may very well be the next target.

Posted by: MerryKate at November 26, 2005 11:51 PM


How is the post office printing or not printing religious stamps an attempt to muzzle freedom of speech? Freedom of speech does not include the right to use government funds to promote religion.

What long standing traditions are you talking about? The first US Christmas stamp was issued in 1962, so they're a relatively recent occurrence, much like the addition of "Under God" to the Pledge of Allegiance and "In God We Trust" to all US coins during the McCarthyism scare in 1954 and 1955 respectively. If you support long standing traditions, you're for getting rid of these recent alterations.

Let's also not forget what happens when government and religion mingle too closely. The Reformation is one result of that, and the relative absence of Christianity from Western Europe is another example.

Posted by: John Bagley at November 27, 2005 07:43 AM

MerryKate, the problem is that the attack on Christmas as it is called is blamed on liberals.

When you say, "They want everyone to become bland, boring and predictible, to fall in line at holiday time and bleat "happy holidays" while we shell out big bucks for silly trinkets", your problem is with Walmart, Target, Shopping Malls, and not with liberals. All of these companies are blanding down because it leads to more sales for them.

If you don't want to be all bland, cool. Get together with your church group and walk down the string and sing some carols.

Posted by: jerry at November 27, 2005 08:50 AM

I concur. I did so last year, too. http://www.fromthepen.com/issue111.html

Keep up the fight.

Posted by: bucktowndusty at November 27, 2005 10:17 AM

No, the problem is that a small minority of religious fanatics have, since the country was founded, been so paranoid about their religion becoming irrelevant that they find it necessary to tell blatent lies to defend it. Back when the constitution was being written they realized most people where deists that rejected Biblical literalism and organized churches, (Gosh! Can't imagine why they disliked the idea of reinventing the Pharisee...), so they insisted the establishment clause be added, lest a more personal, non-priest dominated and non-literal version become the state religion. Instead, "Shock!", they got people thinking that *all* religions should be respected and soon after they started claiming that Christians where being persecuted, when they really meant, "No one wants to belong to our bigotted literalist version." We have spent 200 years talking about "respecting" others views and in the moment true respect starts to be seen, the fundimentalists start panicking and attacking materialists, atheists and how ever else they can think of that won't show their true colors, which is to attack the very mutual respect and freedom both of religion and from someone forcing theirs on us. This has led to a backlash, just as having state religions in European countries eventually did. Respect doesn't mean, "We can shove our religion down your throat all we want, but you can't complain about it or request we limit who we force it on in any way. If you do you're being anti-religious and un-American."

Now, if anyone was seriously trying to do what they did in Scotland, as I stated in a prior posts, then you would have a leg to stand on. Otherwise, your simply falling for the lies of a small minority of fundimentalist lunitics that have never been relevant in this country and never will be, unless and until they can convince all you gullible people to pass laws that institute special protections a priviledges for **their** literalist religion, in the false name of protecting all religions. And *of course* having these people constantly attacking every other belief or non-belief for the last 200 years is going to result in the rest waking up and realizing what the agenda is. All the "attacks" you people mention are simply what **they** have been doing to everyone else since *before* this country was founded. But there is a difference. We want to even the playing field, so everyone is respected, they want they special priviledge and position to be protected and defended by law, while everyone else is forced to bow to them, even if they don't follow the same religion, or any. The new Pharisee, you can't have a job in the government without *our* permission. You can't marry unless its under *our* rules. You can't think, read, create or do anything we don't approve. And if you want to join us in prayer, there is a $500 minimum payment at the door to get the *special* services. Makes me sick. If I was religious, it would make me both sick and positively enraged. Yet most people fall for the BS these people are preaching, because no one wants to have *their* beliefs reduced to true "equality" with anyone elses. They know this, and have been using that fact to manipulate and destroy mutual respect and truths that contradict their morally relativistic, everything, inlcuding lying it acceptable if for God and I will pretend the Bible is both literal truth and that Jesus, dspite never mentioning specific parts, told us which parts are relevant and which are not, so I can safely ignore the bits that **I** choose not to follow. Talk about situational ethics...

Posted by: Kagehi at November 27, 2005 11:04 AM

My, my, how fast the arrogant, preening Christian haters come out in force when Christians complain about anything. It seems their central argument always boils down to "I'm far too intellectually superior to believe" when wasting their time snarking at believing Christians seems to belie that. It just must be that heavy psychological pressure from being surrounded by people who believe in God that brings it out.

I'm glad that it has turned out not to be true that Madonna stamps will be unavailable next year. I was able to get stamps a couple of days ago without any trouble. Sounds like the guy your mom spoke to was a bit of a trouble maker.

OT - Since LOTR and Narnia also seem to have appeal to the anti-God types, I've always wondered how many of these brainiacs know that Tolkien was a Catholic and that C.S. Lewis was a devout Christian (and that Tolkien was instrumental in bringing Lewis back to belief from atheism).

Posted by: inmypajamas at November 27, 2005 11:34 AM

"OT - Since LOTR and Narnia also seem to have appeal to the anti-God types, I've always wondered how many of these brainiacs know that Tolkien was a Catholic . . . "

God, this is so incoherent! Do you have any evidence that LOTR fans are particularly "anti-god"?

Wait, before we even talk about that, what does "anti-god" mean? Is someone "anti-god" an atheist? But, how can someone be against something he or she doesn't believe in? Or is it that someone who is "anti-god" believes in god but is still opposed to him, kinda the lucifer position, right? This latter argument of course implies the anti god person is like satan. No value judgement there! So, saying someone is "anti-god" is either nonsense or absurdly ad hominem.

But my fav is bringing up Tolkien. If Tolkien weren't catholic would it make a dime's bit of difference in LOTR? And why bring him up anyway? Was he mad because they never sold madonna stamps at the Oxford PO?

Posted by: Tree at November 27, 2005 03:16 PM

My, my, how fast the arrogant, preening Christian haters come out in force when Christians complain about anything.

Only if those complaints are demonstrably false, manipulative and misleading. Who's sounding arrogant, by the way?

Posted by: richard at November 27, 2005 06:32 PM

In the words of Tom Lehrer:

Christmas time is here, by golly,
Disapproval would be folly.
Deck the halls with hunks of holly,
Fill the cup and don't say when.

Kill the turkeys, ducks and chickens,
Mix the punch, drag out the Dickens.
Even though the prospect sickens,
Brother, here we go again.

On Christmas day you can't get sore.
Your fellow man you must adore.
There's time to rob him all the more
The other three hundred and sixtyfour.

Relations sparing no expense will
Send some useless old utensil
Or a matching pen and pencil.
Just the thing I need, how nice.

It doesn't matter how sincere
The gift, nor how heartfelt the spirit
Sentiment will not endear it,
What's important is the price.

Hark, the Herald Tribune sings
Advertising wondrous things!
Angels we have heard on high
Tell us to go out and buy.

So, let the raucous sleighbells jingle,
Hail our dear old friend, Kris Kringle,
Driving his reindeer across the shy!
Don't stand underneath as they fly by.

Copyright 1952

The fiftythree year war on Christmas continues, unshaken and unbowed.

Posted by: Dr. BDH at November 27, 2005 09:03 PM

"No Christmas stamps, then no Christmas gifts for the postmen. Ending one tradition should end the other.

Posted by: Neo"

How christian of you. It's that kind of attitude and behavior that points out just how hypocritical your religion is to us nonbelievers. Do you think your postal carrier has anything to do with which stamps are issued?

FYI, postal rates are going up 2 cents in January-I suspect that many stamps are not being issued in preparation for the rate increase.

Poor persecuted Christians. You only control all three branches of the US government and manage to force your religion into the pledge of allegiance, onto money, and on to the steps of virtually every courthouse in America.

Posted by: Matt at November 28, 2005 05:47 AM

Don't let the facts get in the way of your conspiracy theories.
The stamps are still available.
You sound like whiney leftists when you prattle on about being oppressed.

Posted by: shingles at November 28, 2005 09:55 AM

Silly people. Christmas is not about a single mom and her "miraculously conceived" bastard. Christmas is about shopping!

Now, go burn some plastic!

Posted by: Lolz at November 28, 2005 09:56 AM

Dear God,
Please save me from your followers and tell them to get a life. Amen.

Posted by: Larry Piumbroeck at November 28, 2005 12:48 PM

You people are all insane. Jesus told me, this I know. Idiots.

Posted by: mrf at November 28, 2005 12:53 PM

Yes, the "war on Christmas" has been effective. This year no one will be allowed to go to church services on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. Anyone caught doing so will be arrested, tried and shot.

Unless, of course, there really is no "war on Christmas."

Posted by: henry j. at November 29, 2005 06:37 AM

How 'bout this? Target stores eschewing Christmas.


Our founding fathers gave us "Freedom OF religion, not freedom FROM religion".


Posted by: Dan at November 30, 2005 12:49 AM

There sure is a lot of hatred displayed in these comments. That's very sad. I hope these people find the cure for what ails them. I also hope that the folks like "Lolz" that they will appreciate that God would not appreciate being mocked.

Posted by: Dave S. at November 30, 2005 12:37 PM

The only problem with most of this story is that it is untrue.

Posted by: egark at December 2, 2005 05:02 AM

Dan, re your freedom of religion vs. freedom from religion "point":


Posted by: alibidrain at December 2, 2005 01:02 PM

The whole story about the USPS ditching the Madonna and Child stamps is a false rumor . . . see the real story by visiting http://www.syracusestampclub.org/blog.htm

Posted by: Syracuse Stamp Club at December 2, 2005 01:17 PM

I find it weird that a supposedly religious person is using expressions like "WTF" (doesn't she know what that means??!!) and "Jeeze".

Posted by: littleposter at December 3, 2005 12:36 PM

Yes, WTF is pretty potty-mouthed email lingo for a Christian.
It turns out Darlene, Darlene's mom's postmaster, and Michelle Malkin are all wrong. The Post Office has plenty of madonna and child stamps available this year, they were just printed last year, and will have new ones for 2006. However, Darlene and Michelle will have no religious stamps at all when they're roasting in hell for all eternity.

Congratulations, Anthony! For your reading comprehension skills and your unfailing effort to not grasp reality, you've earned a Drew! ~~Darleen

Posted by: Anthony Skaggs at December 6, 2005 02:52 PM

I got all scared that there wouldn't be any religious stamps at the USPS. The entire wall was filled with Madonna and child stamps, you had to ask for different holiday stamps.
This whole thing was silly.

Posted by: kat at December 14, 2005 04:55 AM

Well lets try this again (since my last comment seems to have disappeared). Among the list of stamps slated for 2006, Holiday Snowflakes and... Chacón Madonna and Child with Bird:

copied from the USPS web site:


Holiday Snowflakes

The 2006 Winter Holiday Season will be celebrated on stamps in October when the four "Holiday Snowflakes" stamps are issued. Physicist Kenneth Libbrecht added new meaning to the term "freeze frame" by photographing actual snowflakes. Because fallen snowflakes start to melt and lose their shape in mere minutes, Libbrecht quickly transferred the snowflakes from cardboard to a glass slide using a paintbrush. He then snapped the photos inside a temperature-regulated enclosure using a digital camera attached to a high-resolution microscope.

Christmas: Chacón Madonna and Child with Bird

For the Holidays, the "Christmas: Chacón Madonna and Child with Bird," stamp features an oil-on-canvas with gold details. Dating from around 1765, the painting is attributed to Ignacio Chacón — an artist active from 1745 to 1775 in Cuzco, Peru. It is now part of the Engracia and Frank Barrows Freyer Collection of Peruvian colonial art at the Denver Art Museum.

Posted by: PsychoPhil at December 18, 2005 09:01 PM

Just another fake controversy. How gullible can you be? Anyone can get these stamps. The speed of stupidity is faster than the speed of light it appears in conservative echo chambers.

Posted by: paulo at December 21, 2005 10:50 PM