Monday, December 19, 2005

Oh, Tanenbaum...

Someone at work posted an e-mail saying the following:

Christmas is once again politically correct. Congress passed a resolution declaring the national tree the National Christmas Tree not the National Holiday Tree and that this the Christmas season and not the Holidays.

Heard that from Michael Savage – The Savage Nation radio show.

I pointed out the flaws in this e-mail soon after with the following response:

Is that the National Christmas Tree or the Capitol Christmas Tree that was renamed? They are two different trees.

The National Christmas Tree is at the White House and has always been called the National Christmas Tree. The Capitol Christmas Tree stands on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol grounds. It was the one that was renamed the Holiday Tree back in the 90s.

The Capitol's senior landscape architect confirmed that the Capitol tree was to be called the the Capitol Christmas Tree back on November 28.

"The Capitol tree, traditionally overshadowed by the White House's "National Christmas Tree," was renamed a "holiday tree" several years ago, according to the Capitol Architect's offices, in an effort to acknowledge the other holidays of Kwanzaa and Hanukkah -- although no one seemed to know exactly when the name was changed or by whom."

I have no idea if the e-mailer got the name of the tree wrong, or if he heard it right and the person he was listening to got it wrong. What this underscores, though, is the belief that the National Christmas Tree was called the Holiday Tree, when it was not. It was the lesser known Capitol Christmas Tree that was renamed.

Just another object lesson on how people will hear what they want to hear.

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