A favorite holiday tradition for many Americans each year is watching “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” the animated 1965 short based on the “Peanuts” comics by Charles M. Schulz — a creation that has never faded from popularity.
The ABC network still airs the Christmas special on an annual basis.
Laura Ingraham, host of “The Ingraham Angle,” counts herself as one of the millions who watches the special each year, but she has a feeling Schulz would have a lot more trouble making the program today than he did decades ago.
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“[It’s] doubtful a network would [give the] green light today,” she said Thursday night to the Fox News audience. “Atheists would probably protest or sue.”
She chalked up the special’s lasting popularity to the fact that creator Charles Schulz “knew the American audience,” something that’s not an easy case to make for many creators in Hollywood today.
“‘A Charlie Brown Christmas,'” Ingraham argued, “speaks to the best of who we are.”
The special follows young Charlie Brown as he tries to weed through the commercialism of Christmas to find the true meaning of the holiday. It’s eventually explained to him by the character of Linus in a straightforward but powerful and heartfelt speech that quotes Scripture about the birth of Christ — which was almost cut by network executives, as noted in a recent LifeZette piece about the show’s creation.
Schulz, a Sunday school teacher as well as a cartoonist, fought to retain the Linus speech, which explained the religious beginnings of Christmas.
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“I still get teared up when I watch that every time,” Ingraham said after showing the Linus clip. The speech, she said, is “the most touching, the most moving, [and] the most enduring” scene from the popular program.
Clearly it’s not a piece of art that could be easily created by today’s politically correct and largely Left-leaning entertainment industry. But, as Ingraham noted succinctly, “At least we’ll always have Linus.”