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Christmas Draws Near

As Christmas draws near, thoughts of gratitude and concern fill my mind. I am grateful that American democracy has survived the vilest attempts at its overthrow, compared to nothing since the Civil War. I am grateful that many Americans, more than fifty percent, understand that the inflation crisis we suffer  now is the product of corporate greed, COVID-19, and Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and disruption of the world economy. 

Make no mistake about it: This is World War III, so far without frying the planet to a radioactive crisp. I am grateful that our current government offers cool heads when faced with a madman, and many madmen.  

At the same time, I remain grateful that we and the NATO countries continue to support Ukraine without putting boots on the ground. With measured help, Ukraine is winning this war against Russia.  

While I love all the lights and pageantry of the holiday, and like receiving and giving some nice gifts, most of what we truly want and need can’t be bought at the mall. Our souls crave peace and enlightenment.  The cost of hate and stupidity have become ever-more expensive. 

Inflation has of course hurt our family, just as it has probably hurt yours. During World War II, however, people made sacrifices, hunkered down, and overall, worked to make America better. Yet, even locally, I have encountered Neo Nazis who wish to impose a Hitleresque agenda upon this country.  

How clear and blatant is this? Consider the January 6th attempt to overthrow our government, which even included calls to assassinate the Vice President and other elected officials. Consider Mr. Trump’s recent supper with Kanye West and a leader of White Supremacists. Consider Mr. Trump’s recent call for the suspension of the U.S Constitution. Friends, would you embrace all of these heinous deeds to have more steak on your plates? Jesus urges us to eschew blood money and accept simpler fare. 

Well, what would Jesus do? I really love that question, particularly, since we are celebrating his birthday. Sure, he would enjoy the sacred celebration, for he became the one anointed with the Christos. I believe he would call for a dramatically less materialistic holiday, instead opting for putting our energies into world peace and enlightenment. 

In our own community, he would call for an end of systemic racism. He would remind us that he was not a Scandinavian, peachy white as many portrayals show him. Jesus was dark-skinned Middle Eastern man. 

Jesus would give us the gift of Universal Healthcare and free college for public institutions, for as a practical man, he would ask us, why would you support policies that lead to a sick and fatally dumbed-down America? He would also make sure that all have access to affordable housing. 

Finally, He would make a call for us to remember the importance of social and environmental justice.  

He would hug trees and plant a more glorious garden, leading to the true promise of the season:  Heaven on Earth. 

Maria Jacketti 

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