_ _ _ _ _ _MAS!
Notice anything missing? Yes, ladies and gentlemen, they're at it again. The secular Progressives, determined to eliminate any reference to religion in the public square have resumed their annual event, the "War on Christmas", claiming that any public celebration of the holiday should be curtailed out of "respect" for those who don't hold the same religious beliefs. They're oddly silent on the subject of respect for those who hold traditional Christian beliefs and their right to celebrate a traditional Christian holiday.
This year, an atheist group, the so-called Freedom From Religion foundation erected a billboard in New York City proclaiming, "Who Needs Christ During Christmas? Nobody!" Seriously? Without Christ, you simply have "-mas". Everyday New Yorker's disagree with the sentiment expressed.
The board of an elementary school on Long Island, NY decided they needed to avoid hurting anyone's feelings who isn't Christian during their annual holiday concert. To that end, they creatively edited the
Christmas Carol, pardon me, Holiday Song selected for the children to sing in the production (it was Silent Night) to omit any and all references to Jesus, Christ our Savior, the virgin birth, & holy infant. Surprisingly, even on liberal Long Island this didn't go over well. Apparently, the parents were not aware of the editing of the carol and voiced their displeasure to the school board that they would dare tinker with a traditional holiday theme. The board defended their decision on the grounds of not wanting to offend any non-Christians in the audience. I guess it's OK in their view to offend Christians who might not appreciate the elimination of nearly all religious references from what is, after all, a Christian hymn.
They've promised not to do it again.
And, in Vancouver, Washington two young girls were booted from the property of their local WinCo grocery store for caroling. The girls' intention was to “give a warm fuzzy feeling to anyone who walked by". However, a store employee booted them from the property allegedly because their holiday jingles might offend patrons who don't celebrate Christmas, despite the fact that the girls sang both traditional religious and secular songs like Jingle Bell Rock and Silent Night. When one of the girl's mother contacted the local news outlet, KATU-TV, to report the incident a reporter was sent out to cover the story.
For the follow-up, the reporter accompanied the girls back to the store to see if maybe the whole thing was a simple misunderstanding. The reporter was given the name and phone number of an attorney for the store. When contacted, the attorney in the end stated that the girls would likely be allowed to return to the store to resume singing Christmas carols to the customers.
Every year, it seems, there is some individual or group determined to prevent any public celebration of the Christmas holiday. Well, there will be none of that "Happy Holidays" PC here. The holidays are Christmas and Hanukkah. (I don't want to hear anything about "Kwanzaa").
We aren't celebrating the equinox (when was the last time anyone sent you a "Happy Equinox" card?). We are celebrating one of two religious traditions. The most widespread in the U.S. is, of course, Christmas. Whether you observe the holiday for it's religious significance or not, the "reason for the season" is the birth of Jesus Christ.
In fact, the tradition of giving gifts is a direct reflection of the story of the three kings (the three wise men) who traveled to see the Christ-child bearing valuable gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. When we exchange gifts, whether we know it or not, it's in remembrance of gifts of the magi.
I've never understood the hostility of the atheistic, secular left to the traditional celebration of Christmas. What harm is it to them if there's a Menorah, or a Nativity Scene, or a Christmas tree in the town square? What do these groups gain out of lodging lawsuits against towns for their Christmas displays? What harm is done them if there is a production of a Christmas play at the local school or (heaven forbid) church? If an individual parent has objections to the content of the Christmas play, they are free to keep their child at home.
If they don't agree with the religious significance of the holiday, fine. They are under no obligation to say "Merry Christmas" to anyone. It would be nice, though, if they could somehow muster up the common courtesy to reply to someone else's Christmas wishes with a simple "Thank you". They do not have the right to force others in their town or city to not celebrate the holiday as they wish, because they feel somehow offended at being "left out".
They will trot out the canard that the setting up of a Christmas display on "public property" somehow violates "The Separation of Church and State". Problem is, it doesn't. There is no such clause in either the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution of the United States of America. The First Amendment reads, in part: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...". [Emphasis added] In short, there is no basis in law for allowing one group of people to prohibit others from celebrating Christmas (or any other religious holiday) in any way, even on town, city, municipal, or even state and federal property!
The colonists separated from the rule of England partly because of the demand of the King that they all celebrate the State's religion ONLY, and only in the manner prescribed. They wished to be allowed the freedom to worship God as they saw Him and in the manner they deemed appropriate. With that history behind them, the founders went out of their way to provide for that freedom when they set up the governing documents of the new country. What they did not intend, was that some future religious observance could be derailed and prohibited over the manufactured outrage and complaints of a handful of malcontents, or in some cases, only one.
There is a very large gap between the town allowing a Christmas display with the baby Jesus and the wise men, or a cross or menorah or any religious symbol relating to the holiday, and the State's Establishment of an Official Religion and imposing it on the people. No one is going to descend on an atheist or agnostic household and frog march them into the church of their choice to observe Christmas services.
Americans have the Constitutional right to our celebration of Christmas. Progressives, atheists, and others who demand that such displays be removed and prohibited from the public spaces have absolutely no right to demand that we conduct our lives to accommodate their personal prejudices.
I would like to take this moment to wish all of my rational readers and their families the merriest of Christmas's, a Happy Hanukkah, and the most joyous and prosperous New Year!
To the secularists and progressives who seem to be determined to ruin our traditional holiday celebrations and erase any mention of religion (except, perhaps, Islam. Can't offend them, can we?) from the public lives of Americans I can only say one thing.............................................................................
[Publisher's note: As I can reliably expect similar events to play out in the ensuing years, this post will probably become something of a tradition on this blog. At least until the Progressives agree to allow others the same "1st Amendment rights" they demand for themselves.]