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Ed Driscoll

‘Mazel Tov, Christians!’

December 24th, 2013 - 4:49 pm

“As a Jew, and a religious one at that, I want to wish my fellow Americans a Merry Christmas,” writes Dennis Prager today:

Not “Happy Holidays.” Merry Christmas.

I write, “my fellow Americans” because, as reported by the Pew Research poll released just last Wednesday, nine in ten Americans say they celebrate Christmas.

Apparently, many Americans have forgotten that Christmas is not only a Christian holy day, but also an American national holiday. Just as we wish one another a “Happy Thanksgiving” or a “Happy Fourth,” so, too, we should wish fellow Americans a “Merry Christmas.”

It doesn’t matter with which religion or ethnic group you identify; Christmas in America is as American as the proverbial apple pie. That is why some of the most famous and beloved Christmas songs were written by . . . guess who? Jews.

“White Christmas” was written by Irving Berlin (birth name: Israel Isidore Baline).

“Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer” — Johnny Marks.

“Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” — composed by Jule Styne, lyrics by Sammy Cahn.

“Silver Bells” — by Jay Livingston (Jacob Harold Levison) and Ray Evans (Raymond Bernard Evans).

And one of my favorites, which, ever since Ricochet’s “GLOP” podcast with Jonah Goldberg, Rob Long and John Podhoretz dusted it off last week to end the show, I have going through my head on a Mobius loop for some reason. In any case, it’s certainly one of Saturday Night Live’s better recent bits:

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Rudolph was written by Robert May, a Catholic. I lived in the same neighborhood with his family.
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