Dahlia Lithwick's piece about which Christmas movies Jewish parents should allow their children to see offers a better description than I could of what Judaism-as-not-Christianity looks like. I both get it and can see how ridiculous it would look to those who don't. Of all the things parents have to keep from children, they're going to get worked up about Santa? A favorite time-to-embarrass-Phoebe anecdote in my family is of the time when I sat on Santa's knee at a Christmas party for doctors and their children. I guiltily confessed to Santa that I was Jewish. "Santa," a doctor colleague of my father's, told me that he was Jewish too.
The comments to Lithwick's article reveal just how baffling the Jewish response to Christmas is to non-Jews:
"I always laugh when I see this kind of thing...if your faith is so weak that your kids will announce 'screw this, I want to be Christian' after watching a tv show, then maybe you need to rethink things."
As though this were about faith in Judaism, as opposed to Judaism-as-non-observance-of-December-25th.
"Do people of non-Irish ancestry agonize over whether or not to drink green beer on St. Patrick's Day?"
Final note: This comment to Lithwick's article is tremendous:
"Perhaps they [your children] will feel less confined to their Jewish heritage if they are allowed to explore outside of it."