A Merry Christmas to All
It’s been 75 years since a compilation of 10 holiday songs by Bing Crosby hit the market and topped the charts. For many Americans, the “White Christmas” album remains the official soundtrack of the season. Even though I was born nearly four decades after their initial release, whenever I hear Bing’s versions of “White Christmas,” “Jingle Bells,” “Silent Night” or “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” I immediately recall holiday decorations and gatherings around the tree in my parent’s living room.
Just as traditional Christmas songs stir my imaginations, Hollywood films also reflect evolving emotions about the holiday as we grow older. For my generation, the modern-day holiday classic “A Christmas Story” perfectly captures the wonder of a boy dreaming of a special present under the tree. Like the cartoon characters in “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” each of us eventually realizes the holiday means more than a well-decorated tree. And as Clark Griswold learned to embrace an imperfect family gathering in “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” we find joy in whatever the holiday brings, as long as it’s spent with the ones we love. Hopefully, there’s a little bit of Will Ferrell’s “Elf” in all of us.
Right now, the holiday cheer seems a bit strained, but I believe there are better days ahead. The past year has been difficult, but my hope is the arrival of a vaccine marks the beginning of the end for the pandemic. In time, our nation will fully recover and we’ll look back fondly on holiday memories made in this most unusual year.
Christmas 2020 definitely has a different feel than in years past, but it’s still Christmas. Perhaps this year we can focus just a bit more on the true meaning of Christmas. We can recall the birth of Christ and reflect on the joy and hope of the season. We’ll cherish Christmas cards and phone calls and be thankful for all the blessings of friends and family. Maybe we’ll even raise a cup of cheer to faces displayed on a Zoom screen. However we celebrate, love will still be the best gift of Christmas.
In the coming weeks I’ll be returning to Jefferson City for the start of the 2021 legislative session. Soon my attention will be focused on legislative proposals and policy debates, but all that can wait. For now, together with my wife Lucinda and our faithful companion Truman, I want to wish everyone a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.
It is my great honor to represent the citizens of Platte and Buchanan counties in the Missouri Senate. Please contact my office at (573) 751-2183, or visit www.senate.mo.gov/mem34.