As part of its seventh annual "Friend or Foe" Christmas Campaign, Christian legal group Liberty Counsel released its "Naughty & Nice" checklist on Wednesday to point out which business censor or recognize Christmas.
And according to the new list, there are far more retailers that recognize Christmas this year in their marketing and advertisements than in past years.
"When Liberty Counsel first created the Naughty & Nice list, the number of retailers in the 'Naughty' column equaled the number listed in the 'Nice' column," the Fla.-based organization reported. "However, that trend began to change during the two Christmas seasons of 2007 and 2008. Now, the Nice column far exceeds the Naughty column."
This year's "Naughty" list includes 27 businesses, including American Eagle, KB Toys, and stores owned by Gap Inc., which recently informed the American Family Association that its new commercial, to air starting Saturday, "has a very strong Christmas theme."
In light of this, Liberty Counsel does note in its "Naughty" list that if recent Gap reports are true, Gap stores will be moved to the "Nice" list, which currently features over 60 business including Costco, JC Penney, Kay Jewelers, Lowe's, Nordstrom, and Wal-Mart, which Liberty Counsel described as "very 'Christmas' friendly" this year.
Popular Gap stores include Old Navy, Gap and Banana Republic.
In addition to listing the names of the businesses on the "Naughty & Nice" list, Liberty Counsel has included remarks about each, noting the absence or presence of the word "Christmas" in their websites and advertising campaigns as well as "Christmas" replacements.
"Every consumer should make a list and check it twice, stop patronizing retailers which are naughty and shop at those which are nice," commented Mathew D. Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel and dean of Liberty University School of Law.
"Retailers which seek to profit from Christmas while pretending it does not exist should realize they have offended the vast majority of Americans who enjoy Christmas. Customers have a choice, and they will not patronize corporate Scrooges," he added.
According to Staver, the success of the "Naughty & Nice" list illustrates the power of the consumer to shape corporate policy.
"Consumers should compliment retailers which honor Christmas and tell those which do not why they are patronizing their competitors," he added.
Liberty Counsel has released its "Naught & Nice" list each year since 2005.
On the Web:
Liberty Counsel's "Naughty & Nice" checklist at www.lc.org.