The Washington Times - December 1, 2012, 01:22AM

Economist Ben Stein said there is an underlying sense of anger behind the so-called “War on Christmas” and that he doesn’t consider people who attack the holiday “well in the head.”

Mr. Stein, perhaps best known for his deadpan delivery as a high school teacher in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” stressed that even though he is Jewish, he has no problem with the phrase “Merry Christmas” and he likes the phrase “Christmas tree.”

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“It’s a Christian holiday,” Mr. Stein said on Fox News’ “The O’Reilly Factor.” “There are a lot of angry, bitter people out there — they’ve got to attack something, so they attack Christmas.”

“I don’t consider them well in the head,” Mr. Stein continued. “God bless them — they probably wouldn’t like my saying that about them — God bless them, but there’s nothing wrong with celebrating ‘Merry Christmas.’ There’s nothing wrong with having this be the predominant holiday in a predominantly Christian country.”

Host Bill O’Reilly then brought up his interview with Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee where they discussed the state’s decision to label the state house tree a “holiday tree,” rather than a Christmas tree, conceding that Mr. Chafee didn’t seem like an angry guy. Mr. Chafee ended up telling Mr. O’Reilly that Fox News is “too angry.”