Merry Christmas, let it be a good one or something.
Yes it is that wonderful time of year when songs are repeated, food portions are halved and everyone digs deep into the coffers to buy the latest fad. Greenday – Dookie, is currently in the car just incase I need a little Christmas saving from Wham and Slade. I did however make some form of effort this year, I put a few decorations up but the tree is still in the box out of sight. The nativity scene with the manger and the Israeli wall sits on the sideboard as a tongue in cheek way of reminding us that the traditional image of Christmas is a little tarnished. The story of Christmas of the Palestinian Woman who gave birth to the king of the Jews, who was given the Spanish name Jesus and I haven’t even mentioned the Turkish Jolly Saint yet!
My copy of Open Bethlehem arrived yesterday, it was directed by Leila Sansour. It was a reminder of how the world has turned a powerful story into something political. Where the Holy City of Bethlehem is now split by a 8metre tall wall. Having been there it is an interesting place to go but the ‘them’ and ‘us’ is very much about how you feel about the world. The Israel Army one of the strongest in the world covers an area the size of Wales (everything is the size of Wales look how much rainforest is cut down, it is the size of Wales). It is easy to be drawn into the mess and side up with the Palestinians but likewise certain Christian aspects side with the Jews. I don’t hate the Jews or Palestinians. It is not as simple as that but the authorities in power there are to blame, not the people doing their thing on a day to day basis. The rules of the Middle East do not gell well with the rules of Europe the cultures are wider than people realise. Children getting arrested for throwing stones at concrete walls means something different to here. There is a paranoia in both camps, an unhealthy fear of each other. To sit at a table and hear the words ‘The Jews were asking for it’ and at another table ‘The Arabs had their chance’ reminds me of how loud mouths are always heard. Yet ask a person in the city what they want for the future and the response is that their children can go to School over the wall where the best teachers are.
The shitty people in power know how to ignite a population into hate or stir it up to create resentment. Farage managed to do that with his Yorkshire pie eating to show how he was for the good hard working little people whilst secretly sipping away on 90yr old Brandy no doubt. The people licked his balls not fully knowing what they were doing and why. The little people or those further down the chain from Politics always get shat on. The rising up of small group has always been a powerful reminder of love and hate. A small group spread love and Christianity around the world and a small group ignited a nation into hate that wiped out 6 million Jews. It seems easier to destroy something than build it these days and confusion is rife when it comes to information sharing.
So Christmas, that time of joy and peace. That time of Wham and Slade and the Mistle and Wine. That time of being happy to all and not to mention catching your colleagues cold the day before you finish.
I think we as people are really needing each other. The nation is divided and there is a social unease/vulnerability that people hint and but don’t like to discuss and I am not sure that is the healthy way to deal with it.
What I really think you need as I do is an ear to hear, a safe space to be. We as people are strange with our beliefs, opinions and values but we are still people and surely that is unifying enough for us this year.
God bless us, everyone.
(Oh and a little Baa-humbug as well)