header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
59°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
November 23
1931 - Fall Roundup held at Hoot Gibson's Saugus Rodeo [story]
rodeo


Now and Then in the SCV | Commentary by Darryl Manzer
| Tuesday, Nov 12, 2013
Darryl Manzer

Darryl Manzer

I’m tired. I’m tired of being told I should say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” (In Merry old England they usually say “Happy Christmas.”) I’m tired of being told we put up “holiday decorations.”  I’m tired of being told we can’t say and do things that may offend a small minority of folks.

So guess what? I will be wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, no matter how they do or don’t believe. It is my belief and what I say. I can’t think of a single person I know who is Christian, Jewish, Muslim or Hindu who would take offense to that. Even my atheist friends don’t mind.

I’m doing this because I’m really tired of the “tyranny of the minority.”  Reallyu tired of it. It started for me at Castaic Union Elementary School about 1955.

Remember those little cartons of ice cream and the wooden spoons we would get with them? We were told we had to be very quiet and very good and we would get some if nobody made a sound. If the teacher heard a sound from just one person, we wouldn’t get our ice cream.

Well, one little boy got the giggles … just one little boy. He couldn’t get over them. The rest of us stayed very quiet. And the rest of us didn’t get our ice cream. The kid with the giggles became our tyrant. Twenty-nine quiet kids and one giggler.

That continued in like fashion until one fateful June day in 1968 when I was handed a diploma from William S. Hart High School.

In PE class it was the one kid who did something wrong so we all had to run a couple of extra laps around the track. I hate that track.

Nobody did anything bad in band … Mr. Downs would have killed all of us, we thought. We were sure it was the same way with Mr. Sims and Mr. Alexander.  One kids acts up and everyone gets the punishment.

Tyranny of the minority. It is actually a good method of training for the military. For instance: We were told to take a break and smoke and joke. So even the non-smokers picked up a smoke. They might not actually smoke it, but they didn’t want to cause the whole company not to get a break.

I wonder how many times in boot camp and other schools in the Navy I had to do something over and over until all of us got it right. It made us bring the dummy or uncoordinated up to our standards so we could get on with the real task. The majority helping the minority worked there. Now the standards are lowered so even the dumbest can pass.

And then they got “stress cards.” When the company commander – in Navy boot that could be a Chief or First Class Petty Officer – was a little harsh on a new recruit, said recruit could hold up a “stress card” and stop the usually verbal object lesson. It also meant the rest of the company got additional verbal object lessons. So once again, we helped the minority come to grips with his deficiencies.

Please note that the United States Marines don’t have and never will have stress cards. If you tried to use one in Marine boot camp, the drill instructor might rip off your head and shove said card down your now open windpipe.

In the Marine Corps the majority rules. That majority is your drill instructor. A majority of one.

Out here in civilian society, things are turned around. Heaven forbid we offend anyone. Ever.

I’m not taking that any more. I will say what I want and how I want to say it, and at the same time be polite. I will not repress what I believe because some unknown tyrant might be offended.

Saying “Merry Christmas” is the reason for the season. It isn’t some reason to buy a bunch of material goods. It is a genuine greeting, wishing someone the mirth and merriment of a birth of a child I happen to think and indeed know is the center of my faith.

You’re free to agree or disagree. Your choice. But when you’re making your choice, please don’t attempt to take away mine. That little thing called the Bill of Rights allows me – and indeed a collective “we” – to express ourselves, even if it does offend a minority of folks.

The complaints about Christmas decorations going up too early or “religious” events taking place on public property are inappropriate to the majority. You see, Christmas isn’t just a single day or a single season of the year. It is a feeling of joy and happiness that should last all year. Most of us want to celebrate such joy all year long. And many of us do so.

So stop with the Mr. Scrooge routine and break out in song. Sing Christmas carols or maybe of spinning a top or two. Celebrate your special day any time you want. Don’t let that loud and obnoxious minority that would like to be your tyrant, tell you what to believe.

For me, I will yell at the top of my lungs anytime, “Merry Christmas Everyone!” It is my fight against the tyranny of the minority.

 

Darryl Manzer grew up in the Pico Canyon oil town of Mentryville in the 1960s and attended Hart High School. After a career in the U.S. Navy he returned to live in the Santa Clarita Valley. He can be reached at dmanzer@scvhistory.com and his commentaries, published on Tuesdays and Sundays, are archived at DManzer.com. Watch his walking tour of Mentryville [here].

 

 

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


Opinion Section Policy
All opinions and ideas are welcome. Factually inaccurate, libelous, defamatory, profane or hateful statements are not. Your words must be your own. All commentary is subject to editing for legibility. There is no length limit, but the shorter, the better the odds of people reading it. "Local" SCV-related topics are preferred. Send commentary to: LETTERS (at) SCVNEWS.COM. Author's full name, community name, phone number and e-mail address are required. Phone numbers and e-mail addresses are not published except at author's request. Acknowledgment of submission does not guarantee publication.
Read More From...
RECENT COMMENTARY
Tuesday, Nov 3, 2020
As restrictions remain in place for gatherings and events in Los Angeles County, one of Santa Clarita’s most important traditions will take place on an online format in 2020.
Tuesday, Nov 3, 2020
The holiday shopping rush is upon us! As with everything this year, checking loved ones off your shopping list will look a little different in 2020. There will be no braving the crowds and tussling for the first crack at the doorbuster deals on Black Friday.
Friday, Oct 2, 2020
In his monthly message for October 2020, Santa Clarita City Manager Ken Striplin spotlights results of the city's 2020 public opinion survey about the quality of life in our community.
Thursday, Oct 1, 2020
As with everything in 2020, this year’s State of the City event will be different than years past. We are looking on the bright side, embracing the necessary changes for safety’s sake and rejoicing in the fact that this year’s event is truly inclusive of the entire Santa Clarita community.
Saturday, Sep 19, 2020
Assembly Bill 1457, authored by Assembly Members Cervantes and Reyes, and supported by Santa Clarita’s Senator Scott Wilk, Assemblyman Tom Lackey and Assemblywoman Christy Smith, represents an important step forward in jumpstarting California’s economic recovery.
Wednesday, Sep 2, 2020
In his monthly message for September 2020, Santa Clarita City Manager Ken Striplin spotlights how the Santa Clarita Public Library branches are helping students and families get back to school.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Monday reported 8 new deaths and the county's highest-ever daily number of new confirmed cases of COVID-19 -- 6,124 since Sunday -- as unincorporated Canyon Country recorded its first COVID fatality over the weekend.
Monday COVID-19 Roundup: Over Weekend, SCV Sees 436 New Cases, 1 New Death
The city of Santa Clarita is calling for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to justify the new Health Officer Order update that bans outdoor dining for at least the next three weeks starting Wednesday.
Santa Clarita Officials Call for Hearing on L.A. County Outdoor Dining Ban
The Santa Clarita City Council will hold special and regular meetings at City Hall on Tuesday, November 24, and hear public comments from citizens virtually via Zoom.
November 24: Santa Clarita City Council Special, Regular Meetings
Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger will oppose the county Department of Public Health’s decision to prohibit outdoor dining and further restrictions including another "Safer at Home" order, she said in a statement Monday morning.
Barger Opposes Additional COVID-19 Restrictions on Businesses
Los Angeles County Public Health Department officials on Sunday reported the county’s five-day average COVID-19 case rate had reached more than 4,000, prompting another tightening of pandemic safeguards and restrictions, including restricting dining at restaurants, breweries, wineries and bars.
L.A. County to Prohibit Dining as COVID-19 Numbers Keep Climbing
Researchers who correctly forecasted the growth of COVID-19 infections over the summer issued a warning Monday that cases could nearly double by Inauguration Day, January 20, when presumptive President-elect Joe Biden is to be sworn into office.
Forecast: COVID-19 Cases Could Double by Inauguration Day
The California Retailers Association released a safe holiday shopping video with guidelines and best practices to help employees and consumers be safe during the holiday season.
California Retailers Association Releases Safe Holiday Shopping Video
Los Angeles County supervisors are expected to conduct a public hearing Tuesday for the proposed development of nearly 140 homes next to Castaic High School.
Nov. 24: Public Hearing on Housing Project Near Castaic High School
To encourage safe travel during the Thanksgiving holiday, the California Highway Patrol will enact a Maximum Enforcement Period beginning at 6:01 p.m. on Wednesday, November 25, and continuing through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, November 29.
CHP Sets Thanksgiving Holiday Maximum Enforcement Period
1931 - Fall Roundup held at Hoot Gibson's Saugus Rodeo [story]
rodeo
1843 - Rancho Castec (Lebec-Tejon area) granted to French immigrant Jose Covarrubias [story]
map
1967 - Local voters approve formation of community college and elect COC's first five-member board - Dr. William G. Bonelli Jr., Bruce Fortine, Sheila Dyer, Peter Huntsinger, Edward Muhl [story]
COC board
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Friday reported 35 new deaths and 4,272 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 countywide.
Friday COVID-19 Roundup: 357,451 Cases in L.A. County, 8,634 Cases in SCV
The families of Gracie Muehlberger and Dominic Blackwell, the two students who died during the Saugus High School shooting filed wrongful death lawsuits Monday against the William S. Hart Union High School District.
Muelhberger, Blackwell Families File Wrongful Death Lawsuits Against Hart District
The College of the Canyons Theatre Department’s recorded production of “Woyzeck” is available to stream online for free now through Saturday, Dec. 12.
COC Theatre’s Production of ‘Woyzeck’ Now Streaming
City of Santa Clarita and Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation officials said Friday that 149 small businesses within the SCV have been approved to receive one-time COVID relief grants of up to $5,000 per business as reimbursement for COVID-related expenses.
Santa Clarita, SCVEDC Award COVID Relief Grants to Small Businesses
Valencia, California-based Princess Cruises is extending its pause in global sailing operations in response to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “Framework for Conditional Sailing Order” pertaining to the resumption of U.S. cruise operations.
Princess Cruises Extends Sailing Operations Pause into 2021
The American Public Works Association’s Southern California Chapter has recognized the Inclusive Play Area at Santa Clarita's Canyon Country Park as one of its 2020 'Projects of the Year.'
Santa Clarita Inclusive Play Area Named a ‘Project of the Year’
The Newhall School District has decided to allow preschool reopenings, giving their preschool program director the green light to reopen three preschool sites.
Newhall School District OK’s Preschool Reopenings
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to worsen across the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday asked Americans to stay home for Thanksgiving and only celebrate with people they live with.
Health Officials Urge Americans to Stay Home for Thanksgiving
Santa Clarita education officials from the Newhall School District said Thursday they’re taking “an abundance of caution” after multiple COVID-19 diagnoses were linked to the district office, on the corner of Orchard Village Road and Wiley Canyon Road.
COVID-19 Cases Confirmed in Santa Clarita Education, Business Settings
Westfield Valencia Town Center officials’ plan to expand the mall with a 101,000-square-foot Costco and other amenities is expected to be significantly smaller as officials have proposed removing the gym and cinema features.
Proposed Costco Project at Town Center to Cut out Gym, Cinema
The COVID-19 pandemic has reached a new grim milestone with more than 11,000 new daily deaths recorded globally for the first time this week over several days in a row, making it the deadliest week yet.
Pandemic Records Deadliest Week Yet as Cases Surge
Registering its third-highest monthly haul since 1990, California added 145,000 jobs in October and its jobless rate below 10% for the first time since before the COVID-19 pandemic.
California Jobless Rate Dips Below 10% for First Time Since Pandemic
%d bloggers like this: