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Like Christmas, over the years, Veterans Day and Thanksgiving have become less about the true meaning and more about the day off from work and all that encompasses, writes Rusty Humphries. (Andrew Geraci/The Washington Times)

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The Redskins will look to make Christmas a little less merry for Michael Vick and the Eagles when they travel for a holiday matchup Dec. 23. (Associated Press)

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Marvin Bourne of Richmond takes his wife, Karen on a tank ride, which he called "an awesome Christmas present." (Associated Press)

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** FILE ** In this Friday, Dec. 24, 2010m file photo, a cross is seen near the Church of Nativity, traditionally believed by Christians to be the birthplace of Jesus Christ, during a Christmas parade in the West Bank town of Bethlehem. The Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem is becoming the church of contention with an unwelcome bid by the Palestinians to use their muscle as the newest members of the U.N.'s cultural arm and obtain World Heritage status for the iconic Christian site (AP Photo/Nasser Shiyoukhi, File)

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"A lot of us who went into battle turned around and no one was behind us," said Rep. Mick Mulvaney, South Carolina Republican, in reference to House Republicans' revolt before Christmas against the Senate-passed deal to extend the payroll-tax cut. The showdown turned into a political debacle for the GOP. (Associated Press)

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Jesus Esparza of Chicago was shopping at the Macy's on State Street in Chicago two weeks before Christmas, one of many Americans finding bargains that helped their checkbooks but hurt a lot of retailers' bottom lines. Macy's Inc., however, saw strong gains in December that beat analysts estimates. (Associated Press)

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Above: Onlookers gather around the site of a bomb blast at St. Theresa Catholic Church in Madalla, Nigeria, on Christmas Day. A radical Muslim sect claimed responsibility for the attack and for another bombing near a church in the restive city of Jos. Below: Rescue workers remove the body of one of the victims. (Associated Press)

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Firefighter Nick Tamburro pays respects outside the Stamford, Conn., home where a Christmas morning fire killed three girls and their grandparents. Officials said fireplace ashes in a bag started the fire that devoured the large Victorian house. (Associated Press)

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Shoppers file through Macy's at the Tysons Corner Center mall in McLean, Va., for returns and after-Christmas sales on Dec. 26, 2011. (T.J. Kirkpatrick/ The Washington Times)

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Shoppers walk among Christmas decorations in the Tysons Corner Center mall in McLean, Va., for returns and after-Christmas sales. Tysons Corner Center reports a 10 percent jump in foot traffic compared to last year's holiday season. (T.J. Kirkpatrick/ The Washington Times)

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Caitlin Schultz, 18, of Waldorf, Md., at left, crosses bridge near decorations of hanging lights as shoppers crowd the Tysons Corner Center mall in McLean, Va., for returns and after-Christmas sales on Dec. 26, 2011. (T.J. Kirkpatrick/ The Washington Times)

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This artwork by M. Ryder relates to Hanukkah and Christmas.

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Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl blesses Rita George of Silver Spring, Md., at a Christmas dinner in the basement of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception following Christmas Mass, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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Former Speaker of the House and current Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista Gingrich depart following Christmas Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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Former Speaker of the House and current Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista Gingrich depart following Christmas Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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Former Speaker of the House and current Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich poses for photos with fellow worshippers following Christmas Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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An altar server makes his way down the center isle at the conclusion of the Christmas Mass celebrated by Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl speaks to worshippers at Christmas Mass held at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, Washington, D.C., Sunday, Dec. 25, 2011. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)