Ft. Lauderdale, Fl USA
The annual assault on Christmas comes in many forms. First, there is the barrage of litigation by the American Civil Liberties Union (news - web sites) (ACLU), which is reliably offended by almost any representation of Christianity in the public square. Small towns, facing the prospect of expensive litigation over religious displays on public property, often cave in simply out of fear. Part of the intimidation is that if the towns lose, they must pay the legal fees of the ACLU.
The town of Bay Harbor Islands in Florida refuses to allow a Nativity scene on public property but has menorahs and the Star of David on lampposts and permitted a local synagogue to erect a 14-foot-high menorah on public land.
A fairly new tactic in the Christmas wars can be called the sensitive person's veto. In 2000, the city of Eugene, Ore., banned Christmas trees on public property, then allowed firefighters to put up a tree on Christmas Eve and Christmas, with the provision that if one person objected, the tree had to come down. The next year, Kensington, Md., banned Santa Claus from a tree-lighting ceremony because of two complaints. So the city's most sensitive person was, in effect, allowed to make policy.
The sensitivity argument -- that any reference to Christmas at all might make someone feel bad -- is responsible for the spread of the anti-Christmas campaign from religious symbols to the purely secular and harmless trappings of the season, including red poinsettias, red-and-green cookies, holiday lights, and Rudolph the reindeer.
Santa Claus, originally based on a Christian saint but no more religious than Kermit the Frog, is considered much too divisive and hurtful to non-Christian students in many schools. The principal of Braden Middle School in Florida said, "You won't see any Christmas trees around here. We keep it generic." Some principals and teachers around the country even ban the word "Christmas." In Rochester, Minn., two girls were reprimanded for saying "Merry Christmas" in a school skit.
And though Christmas trees are considered secular when they are useful in warding off Nativity scenes, the word "Christmas" is often removed by panicky officials, thus producing multicultural trees, holiday trees, community trees, care trees and giving trees. The White House still has a Christmas tree, but Congress has a Capitol Holiday Tree.
William Donohue, head of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, points out that an elementary school in New Hampshire declared that December is a gift-giving month but couldn't explain why or how it got to be a giving time of year, since it refused to use the word "Christmas."
The South Orange/Maplewood, N.J., school district banned religious Christmas songs, even in instrumental versions. In Florida, an elementary school concert included songs about Hanukkah and Kwanzaa, but offered not a single note of Christmas music. A recent winter parade in Denver looked very much like a Christmas event, except for one small thing: Every reference to Christmas was banned.
On Dec. 26, ("Kwanzaa Day"), CNN Headline News led all its top stories
from around the world with a report which gave Kwanzaa more coverage
than it did to some Christmas celebrations. Is this part of another
effort to pry away the blacks from Christianity?
Meanwhile, the American Civil Liberties Union has reportedly forced
on unconstitutional grounds the City of St. Ann, Missouri, to remove
a nativity scene from in front of its City Hall in future years,
according to a Dec. 24 news report.
© 2004 WorldNetDaily.com
The New Jersey school district that banned Christmas music, even by instrumental groups, from its holiday concerts has been hit with a lawsuit claiming officials have demonstrated hostility toward religion.
Thomas More Law Center filed a federal lawsuit Friday on behalf of Michael Stratechuk and his two children, who are students in the South Orange/Maplewood School District. According to a statement from Thomas More, the suit claims the district's action is unconstitutional.
This year the district expanded its no-Christmas music policy to include instrumental music. Instead of tunes about Jesus, and even Santa Claus, the 40-member Columbia High School brass ensemble will be limited for the first time to seasonal selections such as "Winter Wonderland" and "Frosty the Snowman." The group's holiday concert is scheduled for tomorrow night.
Last week, Bogota, N.J., Mayor Steve Lonegan, a Republican candidate for governor, has organized what he calls an "illegal" night of caroling tomorrow before the Columbia High School concert to draw attention to the school district's ban. Lonegan has invited his rivals to join him outside the school to sing songs that were deleted from the concert's program.
For all of those to whom it relates, I would like to give a hearty MERRY CHRISTMAS. For all of those who celebrate other holidays instead, I wish you HAPPY HOLIDAYS and for those who are offended that I wish those of my faith Merry Christmas and to those lawyers who, for their own personal gain, try to put the fear of being sued into those wishing to celebrate Christmas openly, I say - bite me.