10 Holiday Controversies

Controversial Holiday Sweaters
Ugly Christmas sweaters are for sale at the Frugalista second-hand store in Washington, D.C. While the only crime these garments have committed is against good taste, other holiday sweaters have gotten into trouble for their messages. SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Holiday sweaters aren't just typically ugly — they can cause heated debates, too. In 2015, Target carried a bright red sweater that boldly proclaimed "OCD: Obsessive Christmas Disorder," which some said was a slam at those suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, known by its OCD acronym. Meanwhile, Nordstrom was selling a blue sweater that featured a large menorah, dreidels and Stars of David, plus the tag "Chai Maintenance" in a nod to a negative stereotype about Jewish women. Nordstrom pulled its offensive sweater after the outcry, although Target did not [source: Channick].

Two years before, Hallmark created a tiny ornament depicting an ugly holiday sweater. Trying to be politically correct, the sweater featured the phrase, "Don we now our FUN apparel!", a modification of the lyric in "Deck the Halls" that reads, "Don we now our gay apparel." The lyric change ended up offending nearly everyone. Gays and liberals pointed out the word "gay" is nothing to be ashamed about. Conservatives argued Hallmark should not have bowed to the politically correct by substituting a word that originally meant "happy" and well, "fun."

After mastering the unusual feat of angering people on both the left and the right, Hallmark apologized for the offending ornament, and it quickly disappeared from the company's website [sources: Top Tenz, Lutz].

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