David Harsanyi finds many reasons to celebrate the Christmas season--even for an unbeliever:
It's this kind of close-mindedness many atheists find most annoying. For a long time, in fact, I believed H.L. Mencken's line that, "God is the immemorial refuge of the incompetent, the helpless, the miserable."
But then poll after poll illustrates that religious people-- in the throes of ignorance, granted--are far happier, far more charitable and far from helpless.
On an ideological front, it dawned on me long ago that though didactic Christians may attempt to limit personal freedoms, they are rank amateurs compared to environmentalist moralizers or "social justice" moralizers or economic equality moralizers of the left.
God or no God, one of these groups generally believes in free will and the others generally believe taking is an ethical pursuit.
Other curiosities invaded my thinking, as well. It is common, for instance, for free-thinking acquaintances of mine, ones who sneer at the very thought of Christianity, to buy into every half-baked mystic-sanctioned cure available.
These same folks who have no compunction comparing evangelicals to the Taliban demand I demonstrate more deference to the misogynistic, homophobic and anti-intellectual theocrats elsewhere in the world. For peace.
So while, today's nonbelievers tend to focus on the ugliest aspects of organized faith-- and there is no dearth of opportunity--they ignore that this nation's tradition of liberty, economic freedom and unmatched tolerance (sure, we could always use more) was driven and tethered to Christian ideas.
Maybe, it's not worth believing. But it's worth a holiday, at least.