THE U.S. is facing great problems with the economy, unemployment, health care, national security, a war and our status as a global power - and all

Daily News

readers can think about is what's missing from a dumb corporate Christmas display?

Reading through the letters section this past week has been a chore. The gall and arrogance of Christians is unbelievable!

On Dec. 8, in reference to Jesus, Thomas Regan even stated, "He is the central figure of the human race." Who says? That will certainly come as a surprise to the Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, Wiccans and everybody else.

There is nothing in the Bible about Jesus being born in December, in fact, it's not certain that Jesus actually existed in the first place. Your deep personal faith not withstanding, there is NO definitive evidence.

Besides, the noble concepts of altruism, tolerance, brotherly love and goodwill toward all were well-known and practiced by mankind long before Jesus even showed up.

If Jesus did walk the earth spreading that message, it was hardly stop-the-presses material.

But if you claim to be a Christian, good for you, but please stop whining about it. Just go ahead and practice the noble sentiments Jesus espoused because that's what being a Christian is really about. It has nothing to do with playing "Away in a Manger" on the Muzak system at the mall. Grow up, guys!

Michael McGonigle, Philadelphia

The best presents

My son Jack celebrated his 4th birthday the other day. We asked his friends not to bring a gift for him, but to instead consider bringing a new toy or book to donate to the Toys for Tots toy drive. So, the back of my car is filled with toys to be dropped off at a Toys for Tots donation location this afternoon. This is the second year that we've done this and I think it's a great lesson for my son and his friends.

Thanks to Byko for the nice article!

Catherine Hewett, Wynnewood

Real value of Mummery

Over the last few weeks, our city has been dealing with the ever-changing budget cuts of Mayor Nutter.

While no one advocates for the closing of libraries and firehouses, I feel as though someone needs to advocate for a tradition that has been part of the city for more than 100 years, the Mummers Parade.

Mummery is part of this city's history, part of the foundation of South Philadelphia and 2nd Street. People come from far and wide to experience it. Now, it's in jeopardy of being condensed, and changed to the point where soon it may not even exist.

It seems as though those who have never experienced the parade or choose to judge the Mummers based on those who enjoy it maybe a little too much are quick to let it die.

What these people don't realize is that the parade is so much more than, as one person put it, "drunks with feathers on." For so many, it is a celebration, a day to forget about their worries and look forward to the new year with hope.

Perhaps those in power need to evaluate where they make cuts and realize the importance of education, safety and tradition.

Samantha Smith