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This holiday season, at nearly seven months pregnant, I am looking strikingly similar to the jolly old man himself. On a business trip to Florida last week, I had trouble deciding if a forward or sideways approach stood a better chance of getting me down the aisle of the airplane. As for shopping, my choice now appears largely between the inflated prices on the Internet or battling the malls where I am required to provide a precautionary beeping sound whenever moving in the backward direction.

But little inconveniences like these can hardly dampen my Christmas Spirit. After all, like the Virgin Mary, I am with child – well, all except the Immaculate Conception part. And frankly, I couldn’t be happier. Bringing forth life is one of the greatest gifts of God and one of the greatest reminders of the true meaning of the season. That is the gift and birth of Jesus Christ.

What does dampen my spirit is the attempt by secular groups to mock and or hijack this holiday season. I never much minded sharing the holiday with Santa Clause. The story of Kris Kringle and his gift-giving message can be tied with relative ease to the true meaning of Christmas.

But the ill-intended attempts to replace Christ with Santa were only the beginning. Now there is a rancorous effort to quash the celebration of Christ at Christmas altogether.

Take for example a “Parade of Lights” that will be held in Denver later this month. This holiday celebration features everyone from Chinese lion dancers to gay and lesbian shamans, but will not allow Christians who want to sing or carry a Christmas message into the season’s event.

Or how about big retailers like Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s who look to cash in on Christmas gift buying but refuse to mention the holiday by name. In an effort to “embrace all religious and ethnic celebrations” they insist stores and employees use phrases like “Season’s Greetings” and “Happy Holidays” as opposed to “Merry Christmas.”

Just last week, young carolers in San Francisco’s Union Square got booted from the shopping mall for singing Christmas songs. (The city claimed the children didn’t have a permit.)

And in Maplewood, N.J., one school district has prohibited a high-school brass ensemble from performing any Christmas music that includes references to Christ, even if the songs are performed without lyrics.

Taking the cake is none other than Planned Parenthood, who for the third straight year is selling greeting cards with the stomach-turning inscription of “Choice on Earth.” This is an obvious attempt to mock the otherwise sacred Christmas message “Peace on Earth,” which was given by an angel announcing the birth of Christ.

It is written in the King James Version of the Bible: “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” (Luke 2:13,14)

In defense of the greeting cards, Gloria Feldt, president of Planned Parenthood, says that “Planned Parenthood believes in every individual’s right to make choices and live in peace with our planet and wishes people of all beliefs a peaceful and safe holiday season.” She also says this card sends “an inclusive seasonal message for people of all faiths.”

Um, someone might suggest to Gloria to be politically correct, she should at least admit her peace and good will specifically exclude the unborn. She should also be made aware her message is not inclusive to people of the Christian faith – you know, the ones with whom this holiday originates.

Of course, I am being sarcastic. No amount of political correctness could effectively disguise the malevolent ambitions of Planned Parenthood or veil Feldt’s disingenuous platitudes. They are an insult to Christians everywhere. And she knows it.

Now with all my indignation showing, it might sound as though I have lost the Christmas Spirit or that I’m actually worried about the overthrow of Christmas in America. Truth is I’m not. I have greater faith than that. Besides, I’m not alone. (The Barna Group reported that born-again or evangelical voters represented 53 percent of the turnout in the election just last month.)

So let the intolerant left try to steal the true meaning of Christmas. They’ll be no less disappointed than the fabled Grinch. In the meantime, I say to Christians everywhere: “Throw political correctness to the wind and greet everyone with the warmest possible ‘MERRY CHRISTMAS!’”

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