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No greeting, but plenty of Christmas in the paper

December 29, 2010 |  3:55 pm


It’s a bit late for a Christmas-related entry, but the readers' rep office was closed for a few days so we could spend the holiday with family.

That's how reader Anthony Filosa of Los Angeles thinks of Christmas, too, he wrote in an e-mail to The Times -- a time for family and friends. It's not only a religious holiday, he said. And that's why he was disappointed that The Times didn't wish readers "Merry Christmas" on the front page.

"Went outside to pick up my papers on this Christmas morning," he wrote in his Dec. 25 e-mail. "The other paper had a very prominent front page Christmas greeting. But your paper was void of any reference to what is along with Thanksgiving probably this nation's most popular holiday."

He signed his e-mail, "Bah humbug."

Reader Mike Miser also was upset by what he called The Times' "extreme non-observance of this holy holiday."

"As a Christian I ask that God forgive you for your avoidance of any recognition of Christ's birthday," he wrote in his e-mail.

Though these two readers celebrate the holiday, certainly not all readers in this multicultural region do.

Senior editor Roxane Arnold, who oversaw the paper for Christmas Day, said The Times generally does not issue greetings on the front page. However, she said, "though there isn’t a specific Christmas wish, we use news coverage to acknowledge the holiday."

The majority of the Christmas Day LATExtra cover was devoted to Christmas-related articles. Two were specifically about the holiday: A "Beliefs" column about the faith-based Salvation Army taking its red kettle online for donations. And a story and photo (above) about a Rancho Cucamonga couple who adorn their home with tens of thousands of Christmas lights in memory of their son, an Army corporal killed in Iraq.

Two more stories give a nod to the holiday as well: An article about storm damage begins with a Highland resident who is brought to tears when she finds a cherished Christmas decoration that survived the mudslide that inundated her home. And a story about a laundromat that serves skid row highlights those who are helping the less fortunate.

There are many ways to note Christmas, and in the Dec. 25 edition, the holiday spirit was there.

-- Deirdre Edgar

Photo: Kim and Rick Creed's Christmas display honors their fallen son. Credit: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times