SAN JOSE, CA – Local Jewish boy James Kirkwood has been struggling to explain to his Christian friends why Hanukkah is better than Christmas.
Being the only Jewish kid at Hemmingway Elementary School, James Kirkwood says he owes it to his ancestors to explain Hanukkah to his classmates.
“I’m the only Jew in… probably San Jose. So someone needs to be the person that tells everyone that Hanukkah is really great and better than Christmas because it is,” said James Kirkwood. “If Hanukkah wasn’t better than Christmas than why would we keep celebrating Hanukkah? And also, did you know that if you are Jewish and it’s Hanukkah you get eight days of presents? And also that Hanukkah has cool traditions like… um… there are clay top-like things called Dreidels. And also that you… um… get presents for a lot more days than just on one day with Christmas.”
According to James Kirkwood, it’s important that other children see that Hanukkah is an “awesome holiday.”
“Everyone thinks I’m weird because I don’t celebrate Christmas and I don’t like people thinking I’m weird so if I show everyone how great Hanukkah is then they will see that I’m not weird and then the other kids will not think I’m weird and then I can play football with them at recess,” said James Kirkwood. “And also, you should teach people about other cultures and stuff.”
James Kirkwood has enlisted other Jewish children from around the country to help explain why Hanukkah is better but so far Kirkwood has been unable to convince any other children.
“I asked (James Kirkwood) if he told them about the eight days of presents but he said the other kids didn’t care about that,” said Brian Greenberg, 6th grader from Tampa, FL. “How could they not care about eight days of presents? I put together a power point presentation for the other kids but James (Kirkwood) said that the other kids were too busy going to look at Christmas lights, visiting Santa’s workshop, shopping, decorating Christmas trees, hanging lights, judging others, and making Christmas lists to watch (the power point presentation).”
Ned and Gwen Kirkwood, James Kirkwood’s parents, say they are happy to see their son taking pride in his religion even though they are not a “strict Jewish” family.
“We aren’t, much to my Mother’s dismay, the best Jews but we still try to do something around Hanukkah,” said Ned Kirkwood. “It’s nice to see James get in to the spirit of the holiday but I don’t think he realizes that the other kids will never, ever think Hanukkah is as good or better than Christmas. That’s a battle Jews have long since lost. But we just hope he likes Star Wars because he’s getting eight days of Star Wars presents! How cool does that new Star Wars movie look? That movie is gonna be tits!”