22 December 2008

What's Wrong With This Headline??


Am I the only person that sees this as somewhat problematic?? A few excerpts from the article:

"'All Iraqis are Christian today!,' the [Iraqi Interior Ministry spokesman] says."
"Santa balloons hang from trees. An artist uses oil paint to create a portrait of Jesus."
"Afnan, 12 years old, shows me her model called 'Arresting the Terrorists.'"
"Many of the people attending the Christmas celebration appear to be Muslims, with women wearing head scarves."

Umm, damn right they appear to be Muslim, 97% of Iraq's population are Muslim!! Call me crazy, but it almost seems like this story was solely reported on and written for Westerners. The way it describes the 'hopeful' scene is as if it's painting a palatable picture of a progressive Baghdad reveling in its moments peace, security, and Christianity. The fact that this outright Western celebration is being orchestrated by the government, I think, shows how tight our country's hands are wrapped around the Iraqi Ministry's neck. What are huge portraits of Jesus, Men dressed up as Santa Claus, and decorated Christmas trees doing in a country that is less than three percent Christian? Not only that, but also the fact that we all know the country is really struggling to maintain its cultural identity amidst an occupation by ignorant Westerners. It's not that I think Iraq is some muddy third-world country that will never comprehend stability, I just think it's a bit peculiar that an ostentatious celebration of Christmas is being promoted by the government for three percent of its constituents.

It makes me think that if the natives there aren't exactly begging for such a celebration, then maybe the party isn't really even for them, maybe it's for some other people that loooove Christmas, and love to see others celebrating their beloved holiday that successfully fuses the consumers of religion and the religion of consumerism. Basically just a last-ditch effort to gain some approval from Americans or at least give the air of progress?

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