December Dilemma Watch

The controversial (and humorous) debates over how families and communities handle the holidays

The Spirit of Christmas Present

Readers of this blog may be feeling as if this December has been a month of rancor and divisiveness at a time when unity should be the theme. Lest we sign off on a low note, December Dilemma Watch wants to use this last entry as a reminder that the ever-elusive "holiday spirit" still lives in our world. Like the Massachusetts woman who is

donating her kidney to a friend


as a Christmas gift. Or the anonymous donor who

delivered envelopes containing $100 bills


to a mother whose husband is deployed to Iraq. Or the way that

Israelis and Palestinians

are cooperating for the first time in five years to encourage Christians to visit Bethlehem for Christmas. All stories of sacrifice, cooperation, and giving that carry with them a sense of hope for next December--and all the months before that.

And to


a good night.

Update: Festivus in the Public Square


As we previously reported, today, December 23, is "Festivus," the fictional holiday made famous by "Seinfeld" sitcom character Frank Costanza. The holiday, which consists of spare decorations and secular rituals like "feats of strength," has gained popularity among some who like the message, "A Festivus for the Rest of Us."

In Barlow, Florida, the observance of Festivus hit a December Dilemma snag, however, when a town commission ruled that

a Festivus sign placed in the town square
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