Goodbye Christmas, Hello Winter

Alex Dinofia, Staff Writer

There is an ongoing debate about whether our upcoming holiday break should be called “Christmas Break” or “Winter Break.” The school district titles the vacation as “Winter Break” to prevent the exclusion of other religions that do not celebrate Christmas. Others argue that because the most commonly celebrated holiday over this break is Christmas, the title should be “Christmas Break.”

The school district was justified in naming the time off  “Winter Break” because of the controversy caused among religions. Junior Trinity Schulz said, “The title should be Winter Break because everyone celebrates different holidays because there are many different religions.” According to Pew Research, only 51 percent of Americans celebrate Christmas as their primary religious holiday. The other 49 percent account or a large part of our population that does not primarily celebrate Christmas, and 10 percent of people are guaranteed to not celebrate any religious holiday whatsoever. Religions that do not celebrate Christmas include Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and many smaller denominations. In addition to alternate religions, foreign students may not celebrate Christmas as part of their culture, or may not be religious. By addressing the break in December as “Winter Break,” we can avoid conflict among different cultures and provide a general title that applies to everyone. 

Sophomore Zeke Pearl said, “If everybody gets a break for Christmas, why isn’t there a break for Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Rosh Hashanah, and Yom Kippur?” If our time off is called Christmas Break, this alludes to the assumption that we are taking a break from school exclusively to celebrate Christmas. This causes commotion because there are several other religious holidays throughout the year that students have to miss school for, while Christians do not have to miss any school because there is a specific break just for Christmas. 

Others argue that because Christmas is the most popularly celebrated holiday over the vacation, the title “Christmas Break” is appropriate. Even though Christmas is the most commonly celebrated holiday during this time, there is also Hanukkah and Winter Solstice celebrations. The representation of all these holidays can easily be addressed with the title, “Winter Break.”