Maybe you haven't heard, but a ton of Christmas movies and songs have been put on blast this holiday season. While we used to just put on a Christmas movie or song and jam out or smile at the TV, now people are listening to the words, seeing the storyline and taking it all in. While the song Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer has always kind of weirded me out, it's actually deeper than that.
People are now realizing that some of the words or storylines in movies are offensive. Baby, It's Cold Outside got banned from radio stations all across Canada earlier this month, only to be put back on the air after Canadian's were not having it. And the classic movie Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer was called abusive and problematic. Seems like Christmas can't catch a break this year.
Well, we can call these people The Grinch all we want, but there are a few more Christmas songs and movies that have subtle offensive lyrics or meanings behind them. But a PSA: We do have to remember these are just movies and songs. While they may be insensitive, they really can't do much harm.
A Christmas Story
A Christmas Story is a classic movie that was made in 1983. While it's still praised as one of the best, there is some controversy around it now that times are different. Since gun culture is such a sensitive topic these days, the fact that a young child's dream is to get an air rifle for Christmas may not resonate with people these days. We cannot forget all of the other messages in this movie, though. Ralphie, who is the main character in the movie, also deals heavily with bullying and ultimately realizes that Christmas is about family.
We have to remember this movie was made 35 years ago when these were not as heavy topics as they are now. In an interview, Peter Billingsley who plays Ralphie in A Christmas Story, says that people still come up to him and talk about their family traditions that include the movie. So while it may not have a place in our modern world, it still has a safe place in our hearts.
More and more I have been hearing that White Christmas by Bing Crosby is actually slightly racist. Bing Crosby's White Christmas is actually the best selling single of all time, and it's sold over 50 million copies worldwide. So why do people suddenly think it's so bad? Well, even though a White Christmas refers to snow being on the ground when you wake up on Christmas morning, some people think that it potentially sounds racist.
The lyric that people have been offended by is, "And may all your Christmases be white". While we can't exactly ask the songwriter, Irving Berlin, what he meant by that lyric, I think it's safe to say he was talking about the weather.
Do They Know It’s Christmas
Okay, this Christmas song is a little bit iffy. While it was a song to raise money for a charity in Ethiopia, when you actually listen to the lyrics, some of them can actually make you take a step back. This particular lyric goes, "And there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmas time. The greatest gift they’ll get this year is life. Where nothing ever grows, no rain or rivers flow. Do they know it’s Christmas time at all?” I mean, that seems a little poorly written.
However, the one lyric that people are mad about is, "Well tonight thank God it's them, instead of you". This lyric was intended to make listeners be glad they can celebrate Christmas, but it really does show the stereotypical thoughts people have about Africa.
I’ll Be Home For Christmas
I'll Be Home For Christmas stars teen heartthrob Jonathan Taylor Thomas, and it's a very light-hearted Disney movie that got a lot of buzz back when it aired in 1998. The movie, which shows JTT trying to get home in time for Christmas from Cali to NYC, is a bit of a letdown. Why? Well, it seems like the only reason he's rushing home is for a promised gift from his dad, which people do not like.
He is promised a Porsche if he makes it home in time for the holidays, and it seems like even though his girlfriend is waiting at home for him, that's the only reason he's rushing. People are boycotting this movie because it shows that Christmas is all about the gifts, and not the actual experience.
The Night Santa Went Crazy
Not sure what I expected from Weird Al Yankovic, but this probably wasn't it. This song is literally about a mass murder in the North Pole as Santa has a 'mental breakdown' and kills all of the elves. This song was released in 1996, and while I'm sure it wasn't on everyone's Christmas playlist anyways, people have been more vocal about it now that guns are such a sensitive subject.
The lyrics, which goes anywhere from, "From his beard to his boots he was covered with ammo. Like a big fat drunk disgruntled Yuletide Rambo. And he smiled as he said with a twinkle in his eye, "Merry Christmas to all - now you're all gonna die!" to him singing about bombing the elves workshop, this probably isn't the best or most celebrational Christmas song out there. Out of all of them, this one is probably the most offensive. You can listen to the lyrics and decide for yourself, but it really does sound like Weird Al Yankovic is the one who snapped.