President Donald Trump wants Americans to feel free to say Merry Christmas again, but CNN’s Don Lemon thinks that’s a “dog whistle to the base.”
Lemon hosted a discussion about President Trump’s recent remarks on CNN Tonight with a lead-in that featured a montage of former President Obama saying Merry Christmas during his time in office.
Lemon also aired a clip from Trump pointing out that “people are saying Merry Christmas again” since he took office.
“This is a line that we’ve heard from Donald Trump many, many … why does he continue … this is a dog whistle to the base because no one has ever stopped saying Merry Christmas,” Lemon said.
CNN Political Commentator Margaret Hoover blamed unnamed competitor cable networks that allegedly promote a nonexistent War on Christmas with “hours and hours of programming.”
“It is intended to go directly toward the cultural base that feels that other people are taking their America away from them,” she said. “That was the dog whistle Make America Great Again. Great from what, right? The people who are taking Christmas away from you, the people who … taking all of your teddy bears away from you, whatever it is.
“We’re going to make it great and we’re going to bring Christmas back,” Hoover mocked.
Lemon and another CNN talking head, John Avlon, thought Hoover’s comments were hilarious.
Trump has repeatedly asserted that the phrase Merry Christmas has become increasingly politically incorrect in recent years in an effort to be sensitive of folks who don’t celebrate the Christian holiday.
“People are proud to be saying Merry Christmas again,” Trump tweeted Christmas Eve. “I am proud to have led the charge against the assault of our cherished and beautiful phrase. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!”
And despite the CNN panel’s claim the left’s War on Christmas is a conservative fairy tale, there’s plenty of evidence in schools and elsewhere of the system forcing folks to hide their faith during the Christmas season.
Last year, a Pennsylvania school district canceled a student performance of “A Christmas Carol,” a Texas school district attempted to force an employee to remove her “Charlie Brown Christmas” decorations, and a North Carolina district banned its student choirs from performing in the annual Apex Christmas Nativity Celebration, an yearly tradition, EAGnews reports.
Also last year, in Oregon’s Hillsboro School District, officials banned Santa and other “religious-themed” Christmas decorations to ensure schools remained “inclusive” for non-Christian students. Several other school districts, including Portland and Beaverton public schools adopted similar policies, KATU reported.
But Lemon isn’t the only one claiming Trump’s support for Christmas is a “dog whistle” to his supporters. Newsweek featured the recent article: “How Trump and the Nazis Stole Christmas to Promote White Nationalism.”
It alleges Trump is “weaponizing” Christmas, much like Nazi Germany:
Trump’s rhetoric differs from that of Nazi Germany’s, most notably because he has never advocated for genocide. But Trump’s talk about Christmas coexists with reemerging white identity politics, experts say.
“Committed white nationalists love Trump’s bring back Christmas campaign almost as much as evangelicals,” Dr. Randy Blazak, a sociology professor who studies white nationalism, told Newsweek. “His followers see this as gospel and a rebuking of multiculturalism and political correctness, and the growing influence of Jews, Muslims, atheists and other non-WASPs.”