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If your Boomer-generation parents or grandparents have recently started panicking about the availability of Christmas presents and sharing urgent concerns about “supply chains,” then you’re not the only one.
Journalist Elizabeth Bruenig, an opinion writer with The Atlantic, joked recently on Twitter, “who got the grandparents going on ‘there are going to be no christmas presents this year’…tons of grandparent panic around here.”
I’m hearing similar concerns from the elder branches of my own family tree, and anecdotally, so have other members of the SPY.com team. All of a sudden, Boomers everywhere are terrified that by the time Christmas comes around, there won’t be any presents for their grandbabies.
Fortunately, we’re here to put your grandparents’ minds at ease! Yes, there have been supply chain problems that could limit the availability of specific products. And, yes, if you wait until the last minute, it’s possible that shipping delays could lead to your presents being delivered after December 25. But that was also true last year because of COVID-related disruptions when President Trump was in the White House.
We’ve spoken with supply chain experts and e-commerce analysts, and virtually everyone agrees that so long as you plan ahead and do most of your Christmas shopping in October, November or early December, there’s no good reason to worry.
We promise you will still be able to buy Christmas presents in 2021. Target, Walmart and Amazon won’t suddenly run out of toys and video games.
What’s Driving the Christmas Panic Shopping?
So what’s with all the Christmas panic shopping among older Americans? The answer, of course, is Fox News and Facebook. A recent look at the Fox News website shows story after story about the Democrat’s newest front in the war on Christmas — *the supply chain*.
Here’s a screenshot of the Fox News website taken on Thursday, October 14:
And another one:
And let’s zoom in on Laura Ingraham, who is painting Joe Biden as a Grinch-figure out to steal Christmas:
To summarize, President Biden hates Christmas. Like, he really doesn’t want your grandchildren to have any Christmas gifts. According to Fox News and Ingraham, you might as well call him “The Biden who Stole Christmas…He broke our economy and now he’s going to ruin Christmas.”
That might sound like a cartoonish exaggeration, but the truth is it’s already “too late” to save Christmas 2021, which may not happen at all this year. Sad!
If this seems like hyperbolic scaremongering designed to frighten retired people so that Fox News can sell them adult diapers, it’s because this obviously is hyperbolic scaremongering designed to help frighten retired people so that Fox News can sell them adult diapers.
Panic shopping will only make supply chain problems worse, but some commentators seem determined to inspire as much panic as possible. Meanwhile, grandparents are seeing alarmist posts on Facebook pages by popular conservative pundits such as Ben Shapiro and Dan Bongino, who are warning of empty grocery store shelves and a canceled Christmas.
Of course, you can’t cancel Christmas, even if some last-minute Christmas gifts don’t arrive exactly on time.
How Worried Should You Be About the Supply Chain?
This week, #emptyshelvesjoe has been trending on Twitter, and some Republican politicians are turning the supply chain problems — which are affecting the entire world — into an attack on Biden. This is all pretty typical political posturing.
Christmas presents were never late when President Trump was in charge.
— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) October 14, 2021
To be fair, the U.S. Postal Service is currently led by Trump appointee Louis DeJoy, who has been accused of deliberately slowing down postal deliveries by reducing service capacity.
To address the global supply chain woes, the Biden White House has been working with private sector leaders from Walmart, UPS and FedEx.
“The supply chain is essentially in the hands of the private sector, so we need the private sector to step up to help solve these problems. Three of the largest goods carriers in the country, Walmart, FedEx and UPS, will make commitments towards moving to 24/7, working during off peak hours,” a White House official recently told The Hill.
In addition, major ports on the West Coast are moving to 24/7 service, as are many large retailers.
Once again, supply chain problems, very real. The war on Christmas? A cable news urban legend that’s getting more ridiculous with every passing year.
Remember, grandparents, Christmas is 70 days away, and that’s plenty of time to buy Christmas presents for all of your babies. Plan ahead, pay attention to holiday delivery deadlines, and don’t stress out too much, no matter what you hear Tucker Carlson say about immigrants or inflation.