Last night I was going through all the emails I received while I was on vacation, and the title of one caught my eye: "Put the CHRIST back in CHRISTMAS." Clearly not from someone who knows anything about me.
The email encouraged its readers to buy Christmas cards and send them to an organization that fights for equal rights - I forget whether it was the ACLU or the ADL - in order to disrupt their activities. The idea was they will have to open all the Christmas cards because otherwise they won't know which envelopes just have cards and which ones have donations or other correspondence.
It amuses me to think the recipients of all these cards might be surprised at the outporing of Christmas well-wishers this year, at least until they learn, if ever, that it is all just an attempt to slow down their operations.
It also strikes me as ironic that, in this case, Christmas cards are being used as a weapon. It's particularly ironic that the organization being attacked is one that fights for human rights, rather than one that espouses hate, terrorism, or any one of the many other evils I would hope the caring people out there would want to slow down or stop.
I wondered how I should respond to this email. At first I thought I would reply with a curt, "Please take me off your email list," but I thought if I did that I should at least provide an explanation. I didn't want to start a confrontation, however, and I don't know any more about the woman who sent the email than she knows about me. I certainly don't want to suddenly find my email box full of Christmas e-cards.
In the end, I took the easy way out, and hit the "Spam" button, which removed it from my Inbox and presumably will prevent me from receiving future emails from this woman. Now, however, I'm not so sure I did the right thing. Part of me wishes I had replied to the email with the following:
"I find it ironic that you are encouraging people to use Christmas cards as a weapon. Please remove me from your email list. In the future, before you send an email, you may want to ask yourself, 'Will this email help to create peace and harmony in this world, or will it do the opposite?' If the answer is the opposite, I hope you will choose not to send it."
Alas, the email is not in my Spam box or in my Trash folder, so I have lost the opportunity to reply to the missive. Insterad, I hope I will continue to try to ask myself the same question in the future before I hit the "Send" button on my emails.