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The 5 Dumbest Things on Wall Street: Nov. 26


1. Christmas Wins the War Against Christmas

For almost ten years now, the American Family Association has bravely waged a war on retailers who express "holiday" spirit rather than "Christmas" spirit in their marketing. They've been so successful in their war, in fact, that the war may be over.

According to a report by AdAge, since the AFA began its campaign, the percentage of retailers who have responded to the AFA's not-so-subtle bullying by embracing Christmas-specific advertising has risen from 20% to 80%. They were even having trouble finding their target for this year, and their list of Companies Against Christmas looks a little thin these days.

Fortunately, Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS) was foolhardy enough to host an online "Holiday Shop," and hadn't singled out Christmas in its advertising. Thus, last Friday, the AFA put its 2.3 million supporters on notice that Dick's should be boycotted until Dec. 25 for its consideration of others.

"In our research of the Top 100 retailers in America, Dick's advertising is likely the most 'anti-Christmas' of all," the AFA told its troops. "Sure, Dick's wants you to buy their products, but no retailer in the nation has appeared to go out of its way to snub 'Christmas' more than Dick's."

By Monday, Dick's was falling all over itself to assure the AFA that it really liked Christmas -- no, seriously -- like a whole lot more than those other heathen "holidays." The company's vice chairman then got on the horn with the AFA and did the requisite groveling, assuring them that its online holiday shop would be quickly renamed the Christmas Shop, and that its advertising would change to specify Christmas. Hannukah be damned. And Kwanza, too. And Las Posadas. And Bodhi Day....

TheStreet Says: Let's get real here: Does anyone, anywhere, truly think that any retailers, anywhere in the country, are somehow opposed to Christmas?

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