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Claim: A Christian group called for a boycott of Wal-Mart after the mega-retailer instructed employees to say "Happy Holidays" in place of "Merry Christmas" and a woman who complained about the practice received a dismissive
Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2005]
Origins: This denunciation of Wal-Mart began appearing in our inbox in November 2005. The text was taken from a
The Catholic League's protest has spurred response from
Fogleman said that the e-mail had been taken out of context and that the stores, while encouraging employees to say "Happy Holidays," did so to include celebrations from Thanksgiving to Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year's Eve as well as Christmas.
In reply to our query about the matter,
We at Wal-Mart believe this e-mail between a temporary associate and one of our valued customers was entirely inappropriate. Its contents in no way represent the policies, practices or views of our company. This associate, who was hired less than three weeks ago, is no longer employed by our company.After Wal-Mart issued the above-quoted statement and altered its web site so that customers who search on the word "Christmas" are taken to an untitled display of Christmas goods (rather than being greeted with the notice "We've brought you to our 'Holiday' page based on your search"), the Catholic League
We sincerely apologize to any person or organization that was offended by the inappropriate and inflammatory comments made by this former associate.
Wal-Mart is proud to welcome customers of all faith, and celebrants of all holidays.
With more than 138 million customers coming through our stores every week and a variety of holidays that they celebrate throughout this season, "Happy Holidays" is a pleasant greeting that applies to everyone and every celebration. It's simply our way of wishing our customers a good time with their family and friends during this time of year.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Barbara "season's bleatings" Mikkelson
Last updated: 12 November 2005
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