An Easter egg actually is an Easter egg

Easter nears (it’s late April this year), and I got to wondering about the word: Easter.

Is it still cool to use it? Or is it going to be like Christmas, where you can use it but only in the privacy of your own home, or in church, but not out in public where innocent young minds could be warped, which is why we have holiday trees.

So after pondering this for much too long than was good for me, because I’m sure I had better things to ponder if only I could have thought of them, and wondering if Easter was going to go the way of Christmas, I did a Google thing and came up with this from The Daily Star, a British paper, that ran a story a few days before Easter last year:

“Cadbury is now selling a Dairy Milk ‘Egg Hunt Pack’ while Nestle advertises Aero’s ‘chocolate egg with bubbly bars.’

“Sainsbury’s has also joined the political correctness trend by selling its own brand of ‘milk chocolate egg.’

“The E-word is apparently so offensive that posh chocolatiers (that) Green & Blacks once described the most important date on the Christian calendar merely as ‘the festival of chocolate and loveliness.’ “

Hmmmmm. Yeah, I know, that’s all there is to say: Hmmmmmm. Maybe it’s just Britain? Maybe here it’s still cool to use “the E word.”

I am not a religious person, but I grew up with Easter and with Easter eggs and the Easter Bunny and Easter dinner (ham, right?) and we never gave it a thought, and we had a Christmas tree (two, because we lived in a two-family house), and I still dig the idea even if I don’t celebrate its religiosity.

But I’m cool with it if you do. I’m cool if you want to have an EASTER Egg Hunt on the town common or have a CHRISTMAS pageant. I won’t go, but I’m cool if you do. And I’m cool if you want to have a menorah on the common or if you want to celebrate Ramadan in school as long as you don’t make kids feel like outcasts if they’re not into it.

What I’m not cool with – and I can say this because I am not religious in the slightest – is pretending these things aren’t what they are. Easter is not just another Sunday that celebrates the products of chickens and chocolate factories. Christmas isn’t just some guy’s (not actual) birthday where we get presents instead of him because he can’t use them anyway because he’s dead and even if he weren’t, he’d just give them to the poor, so we might as well keep ’em.

Both of these holidays revolve around a belief, held by millions of perfectly reasonable people, that Jesus, the carpenter who became The Christ, was born to save mankind on a day that was chosen, many centuries ago, as Dec. 25 and that he died to save mankind on Good Friday and rose from the dead on Easter Sunday.

So, kids, if these holidays do, indeed, revolve around these beliefs, how can we deny them their religiosity? Here, have an egg, but it’s just an egg. Isn’t that what Freud said? Sometimes an egg is just an egg?

This stupidity of denial hasn’t, yet, reached our Thanksgiving holiday. We still call it Thanksgiving, but, friends, that has GOT to change, given the Holiday Tree and the Designed Egg Hunt (or whatever) because Thanksgiving is all about giving thanks to …

C’mon, you know. No, not the Native Americans who came to dinner with the people who stole their land and would eventually drive them onto really scuzzy reservations where they’d open casinos and get even with Whitey by taking his money. Geez.

On Thanksgiving, people who religiously celebrate Christmas (Holiday Day) and Easter (Egg Day?) give thanks to God. Uh oh. That’s what the “giving” part means. It’s not like presents giving. It’s just giving thanks (yeah, and eating too much and in some families drinking too much and in all families watching the Lions lose again).

AND THE THANKS THIS YEAR GO TO (drum roll) … the same person to whom they always went and will go. And that’s no good. Because then we can’t have school Thanksgiving pageants because it could lead to a tree without the proper adjective.

So, how do we tweak Thanksgiving? No, Indiangiving Day isn’t going to work. Don’t get smart.

You know it’s coming down to one of these choices:

1. Turkey Day.

2. Football Day.

Secular enough?

Here’s the thing, though: As an ardent secularist, I’m beginning to get a little peeved at the theft of my secular names or words or … do you know there isn’t even a Secular Day? Talk about discrimination.


Mike Cleveland is former editor of The Cabinet.