Why are paranoid conservatives now telling you that your heathen, socialist mail should be BURNED? Because if you don’t burn your mail, decapitate it and expose it to direct sunlight, then you (1) hate the baby jesus and (2) are a freedom-hating terrorist asshole. And that is bad luck this time of year! Although we think this silly chain email is a kind of misdirected protest against the paying of bills and other responsibilities, this idiocy is actually a yuletide urban legend designed to stir up anti-Muslim fear just in time for the holiday shopping season. Down the rabbit hole we go!
The plot suggests Osama bin Laden created this stamp in league with the United States Postal Service in order to, um, make trailer trash with a pirated internet connection really upset, or something to that effect. In boring old RealityLand, however, the nefarious stamp was first issued in 2001 by then-”president” George W. Bush, to commemorate the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr.
So how can this be? Why, someone did the research and wrote this speech for President Bush, who read it:
Over the past month, Muslims have fasted, taking no food or water during daylight hours, in order to refocus their minds on faith and redirect their hearts to charity. Muslims worldwide have stretched out a hand of mercy to those in need. Charity tables at which the poor can break their fast line the streets of cities and towns. And gifts of food and clothing and money are distributed to ensure that all share in God’s abundance. Muslims often invite members of other families to their evening iftar meals, demonstrating a spirit of tolerance.
During Eid al-Fitr, Muslims celebrate the completion of their fast and the blessings of renewed faith that have come with it. Customs vary between countries — from illuminating lanterns in Egypt to lighting firecrackers in Pakistan, to inviting elders to traditional feasts in Niger. Around the world, families and neighbors and friends gather to share traditional foods, and congratulate each other on meeting the test of Ramadan.
The spirit behind this holiday is a reminder that Islam brings hope and comfort to more than a billion people worldwide. Islam affirms God’s justice and insists on man’s moral responsibility. This holiday is also an occasion to remember that Islam gave birth to a rich civilization of learning that has benefitted mankind.
So be nice to your mail carrier this holiday season, jerks, or Osama will use heat-seeking stinger missiles given to him by George H. W. Bush’s CIA to shoot down Santa’s sleigh. And that’s how the War on Christmas will be lost…