Is it ‘Merry Christmas’ or ‘Happy Holidays’?

Here are the results from a Pew Research Center survey.

(Patch file photo)
(Patch file photo)

Written by Nicole Foulke

Do Americans want store employees to greet them with a “Merry Christmas” or a “Happy Holidays” when they are out shopping?

This is the topic of a Pew Research Center survey, where they interviewed a sample of Americans last December, splitting them into two groups.

In the first group, when given a choice between “Merry Christmas” and a less religious greeting, 57% of respondents, the higher percentage, picked “Merry Christmas.”

In the second group, when respondents were given the first group’s same two options, as well as an option to choose “it doesn’t matter,” 46%, the majority, chose “it doesn’t matter.”

The results are very similar to those in Pew’s similar 2005 survey.

Further, the study found a split between Republicans and Democrats, with Republicans preferring the Christmas greeting and Democrats preferring the choice “it doesn’t matter.”

What greeting do you prefer, and why? Tell us in the comments.

GentrifyNow December 17, 2013 at 10:51 AM
It doesn't matter. In a day when a stranger coming toward you may be the person who shoots, robs or rapes you the fact that someone would offer you a pleasant greeting different from the one you yourself would use is not a reason to get into a snit. The holiday season contains many “holidays”-Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanza, New Year’s and Epiphany-(a Christian festival held on January 6 in honor of the coming of the three kings to the infant Jesus). Plus there are many American Indian tribes and other societies and cultures that celebrate the winter solstice as the time when the growing and gathering season is at an end (or, in the Southern hemisphere, when the growing season is kicking into high gear). And before anyone says certain holidays are “just made up” may I point out that ALL holidays are “just made up”, even Christmas. The early Christian church did not know the exact date of Jesus’s birth (biblical scholars think it may have been August, I believe) so they picked Dec. 25 which was the feast day of the Roman god Mithras, and occurred during the holiday season of Saturnalia (Dec. 17-23.


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