Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Setting the record straight

As the holidays draw closer, I've noticed one of the top searches that land people here is 'Christmas Shoes' -- ie yes, that
carol. I know I'm just provoking more visits by blogging about this insidious song once again, but I cannot reiterate just how much I want this song to go far, far away from the airwaves. People, there will be no love for 'Christmas Shoes' here, none at all. This blog cannot possibly endorse a song that advocates a "no shirt, no shoes, no salvation" policy.

I reiterate a section of my post on the subject, orginally archived here:

For me, songs like "O Holy Night" or "Come All Ye Faithful" or "Joy to the World" are more about the Christmas spirit than this tear-jerker of a song. I know I'm supposed to be moved by the image of a dirty little boy counting out pennies to buy his dying mother a new pair of shoes "just in case she meets Jesus tonight" but the logician in me wonders why not a bowl of soup? How about some medicine? Maybe a doctor? Why new shoes of all things?

Then you've got the guy who helps the boy out. I don't know what his story is, but obviously he hasn't got the Christmas spirit until he finds himself guilted into giving the little boy the rest of the money to buy a pair of shoes for his Momma. Frankly, I'd take this guy a lot more seriously if he offered more assistance than just buying a pair of shoes, which according to the boy's sob story, are basically useless to this poor family (other than the joy of making Momma look beautiful for Jesus, I guess).

My other question is, how did this boy get to the store? Did he walk? Did someone drive him? And why didn't the nice man who gave him money to buy the shoes give the child a ride home? And I don't buy that the guy now knows what Christmas is all about. He assuaged his guilt a little by handing over a few bucks, but really, what did he learn? That in order to meet Jesus, you have to have new shoes? That's not Christmas spirit; that's just materialism rearing its ugly head once again.

So, I'm sorry, 'Christmas Shoes' lovers, for you must be sorely disappointed. But if you can explain the song to me in a way that makes sense, I'd appreciate it!

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