Photo Credit: TLC/Discovery
For the last few years, TLC has aired an annual holiday special called Crazy Christmas Lights. The show chronicled "extreme Christmas lighting enthusiasts" (people who go overboard when decorating their houses), and encouraged their insanity by putting them on TV.
This year, TLC's at it again, but this time with a twist. On Sunday (at 9 p.m.), they'll air Invasion of the Christmas Lights, which features both the lighting enthusiasts and the neighbors who've had it with the crowds, traffic, noise and litter that result from their displays.
Some neighbors call the cops; others speed-dial their lawyers. And the decorating crazies have responded in kind. One guys installs more than 30 surveillance cameras around his small yard to ward off vandals. Another spends thousands in court, defending himself in a noise violation indictment (from his Christmas music display). He gets convicted anyway.
The promos don't mention the issue of wasteful energy consumption, but I checked around to see if people are worried about that, too. And wouldn't you know it, I found a Web site called energyjustice.net, which has issued a call for people to mobilize against the wasteful energy consumption that accompanies over-the-top Christmas lighting.
On the site, they offer downloadable Christmas Police Violation tickets. (You're meant to print it out and then stick it on the door of the outrageously lit house.) Here's what the printable ticket says: "Though your holiday display is festive and enjoyable, it is consuming energy unnecessarily. As a service to the community and to our clean energy future, we ask you to comply with our holiday display guidelines."
FYI, those guidelines include operating inside of an illumination period (two weeks before Christmas through one week after); refraining from keeping the lights on overnight; and using compact fluorescents, which use four times less energy than incandescent lights.
So I guess if you're really offended by outrageous displays of Christmas lights, you could always mail one of these "tickets" to the families you see on TLC. Or you could just not watch the show. That's up to you.
Do you think Christmas lights are harmful to the environment? Chime in below!