For Lyle…

Lyle says he hasn’t heard anything about folks having to tiptoe around the world “Christmas” so for him, I post this piece by Jonah Goldberg, on keeping the “holy” out of Christmas. A good piece.

Some are fighting back by sending Christmas cards to the ACLU.

If anyone has a link to other “Christmas controversies” you can put them in the comments section for Lyle, okay? Please use an html to link, if you can! :-)

Also, for Lyle: The Mainstream Media Still has the Power.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Lyle

    Why I’m honored Anchoress to be featured in your headline. :-)
    I’ll get back to ya with more of my opinion’s on the subject. :-D

  • stephanie

    Hmm…and here I always thought christmas was about “peace on earth and goodwill to men” at the time of Christ’s birth. How naive…it’s just another attermpt to stick it the liberals.

  • http://none Darrell

    Ah, Stephanie…Stephanie…

    By your lower case, you make my case.
    No one is as blind as the Left to their little schemes. Thank God someone is watching. I knew Lyle would not know of any attempt to remove the Christian elements of the holiday season in the West. I knew several others that wouldn’t either. As hard to spot as the Left bias in the news. And if you make mention of it, you violate basic Christian principles. How clever!

    So we are left with “Jingle Bell Rock” and other secular tunes even in nongovernmental venues. We’ve moved past church and state to church and the American culture at large. I thought we agreed that tolerence means allowing everyone to participate? Must the majority sit out its own Holidays? So “Happy Festivus” Stephanie and Lyle!
    Relax while I sing a few verses of “O Come, O Come Emmanuel”– a song that has been banned at several caroling gatherings that I am aware of–deemed offensive to some participants!

  • stephanie

    Darrell,

    My every gesture does not have meaning. Christmas was not capitalized cause I’m lazy. Not as a gesture of contempt.
    Lots of beautiful carols aren’t religious- some are. I’m not much of a christmas music fan, but when in the mood I sing both.

  • gs

    A Christmas tree became a holiday tree and a holiday tree became a Christmas tree.

    Transubstantiation works both ways?!

    (No offense meant, Anchoress. Have an enjoyable and rejuvenating weekend.)

  • karen

    I get to hear what may be the last Christ-mas concert ever in the Catholic school I grew up in and now send my kids to. $$$$ and enrollment issues. We have to raise 125,000$ or a mj part of that- in two weeks :).
    %
    I get to hear the excitement of my six yr old daughter asking if I want to hear a bit of her songs. *Christ-mas isn’t Christ-mas ’til you feel it in your Heart* is one. The other is *Go tell it on the Mountain*.
    *
    If my school dies- and we’ve been down this road many times over the yrs and lost the High School to this death- my kids will go to a public school that just got off the *You Suck* List from the No Child Left Behind Testing system- W’s measuring stick, I guess.
    =
    What songs do they sing at these Winter concerts? Do they even have concerts? Can they have trees and wish people Merry Christ-mas?
    +
    I can’t even imagine and yet- I’m headed straight toward the reality of it.

    OK Spudly- what the yak news station do you listen to if you haven’t heard about the banning of any mention of Christmas? Don’t you know that public schools here in VT have winter Holidays and not Christ-mas breaks? That saying Merry Christmas in Macy’s and now- Wal-mart- is breaking the law? Where’s the freedom in any of that?

  • http://none Darrell

    Karen, sorry to hear about your dilemma! You’re going to have to find an “angel” if you hope to raise that much, that quickly. Maybe somebody can suggest a celebrity to approach. This is the right time of the year to get noticed. If there is some chance, let us know. John Deere was born in VT…

  • Joseph

    What songs do they sing at these Winter concerts? Do they even have concerts? Can they have trees and wish people Merry Christ-mas?…Don’t you know that public schools here in VT have winter Holidays and not Christ-mas breaks? That saying Merry Christmas in Macy’s and now- Wal-mart- is breaking the law?

    -Here is the actual state of the law:
    /
    Can students sing religious Christmas carols at school events or in holiday programs?
    -YES. As a matter of fact, no court has ever banned the singing of religious Christmas carols by public school choirs. A case that addressed this issue explicitly upheld singing religious Christmas carols in public schools.
    -Can schools refer to the winter vacation as “Christmas” break?

    -YES. School districts are under no constitutional obligation to rename “Christmas vacation” as “Winter Vacation” or anything else. The Supreme Court itself has acknowledged with approval that Congress gives federal employees a paid holiday on December 25 and Congress calls it “Christmas.”
    -Although some national public-interest groups would have you believe that Christmas observances are prohibited in public schools, that is simply not true.–http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3845c9150c80.htm

    -Moreover, there there is NO law nor any court decision whatever prohibiting any Christmas observance on private property, including Wal-Mart & Macy’s.
    -Any such decision is solely under the control of either the corporate or the store management. Period. Any customer who doesn’t like it can complain to the management, start an e-mail campaign to the corporate office, organize a boycott, picket beyond the property line, and so forth. Have you heard of anybody caring enough about their Christmas to do these?
    -In the same way, any blanket prohibition of Christmas carols or references to Christmas in schools is simply and solely the responsiblity of the local school administration or the local school board
    -The easiest election to influence in America is the election of a member of the local school board. It’s almost as easy to run for the school board yourself. No public institution is more responsive to public political pressure than the public schools.
    -If any of the people who complain about having their Christmas stolen have taken the matter up with a local school board, I haven’t heard of it.
    -Everything else in the so-called “war on Christmas” is merely a matter of regulation by raised eyebrow.
    -And the only reason it works is that the majority of people are sheep, who cannot bring themselves to raise Merry Hell to someone’s face in order to protect their Merry Christmas.

  • http://none Darrell

    Well, well..Then we have nothing to worry about, do we?

    Not quite. The Left hasn’t chosen a direct frontal assault, no direct bans by an agreeable Federal judge. They know they don’t have the power, yet, to handle the backlash and a national mobilization. They don’t put on uniforms and fight directly, they fight like the terrorists in civilian clothing and sneak attacks. Through the ACLU and like-minded lawyers, they bring civil suits against schools, school boards, and even private companies. School districts, always in need of money and often with “connected” legal representation(read as some brother-in-law of some politician) wind up settling out of court and rolling over. Other schools and businesses not-yet-sued are advised by their lawyers to adopt the “new” politically correct “standards” and we wind up with all mention of Christ being removed from all from all sponsored events.

    But there are people fighting. Several groups of lawyers have banded together to fight these civil actions, with pretty-good success I might add. How do these cases come to their attention? By people complaining, just like we are doing here. Note who wants us to stop.

    Speaking of lawyers and how they put people at risk, I would bet that the airlines had a policy in place on 9/11 that directed their employees, their agents, not to interfere with any potential hijackers. Passengers would sue anyway, but the jury awards are always substantially higher when the personal injury attorneys link the injuries to the acts of a company’s employee. Better to do nothing and let the hijacker proceed, or bring police and government into the lawsuit by their actions later. I had been following multiple incidents of “heroes” in the preceeding five years that had been fired because they took action and saved lives, including a convenience store clerk who first acted after the robber had fired several shots at him after he had the money, and a bank guard who waited until the robber was going to pull the trigger of a shotgun aimed at the manager’s head(the FBI agreed after viewing the tape). In that case, the manager he saved was ordered to fire him.

    John Gibson has a 256-page book on the war against Christmas http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1595230165/satisfactiong-20/002-6758418-1196847 I bet you can even see the “war” against the mention of this topic in the comments. Those wacky Lefties!

  • Lyle

    Darrell, because you are so steeped in the us (conservative,Christian,patriot and all that’s good, vs. them (lefties, atheist’s, treasonous, liberals and all that’s bad), it’s practically impossible to have a reasonable dialogue about any subject.
    -
    “It seems to me this Christmas thing has been going on for awhile. Personally, the issue is down right stupid to me. I am not a politically correct person, so I’ll continue to say Merry Christmas and all that goes with celebrating Christmas. I love the Christmas season because it is the time of year people tend to be nicer to each other. As Christmas day gets closer, the spirit of Christmas gets stronger as I find myself wishing a Merry Christmas to people I don’t even know.
    -
    Here is a quote from someone commenting on Bill O’Rielly’s Christmas campaign. It sums up what I think of his campaign “But people like Bill O’Reilly are going to spend the next 3 and 1/2 weeks killing anything resembling good cheer in the demented belief that being true to Christmas is espousing the belief that there is a ruthless war against Christians, a thing of such awfulness that it makes the Inquisition look like child play, oh how e suffer! Oh how we must froth and curse anyone who says “happy holidays” as a fomenter of atheistic communism and destroy the institutions that irritate us!!!”

  • Joseph

    You are too hard on Darrell, Lyle. Reasonable dialog is not impossible with him. I asked who is being proactive to persuade merchants not to minimize Christmas and he told me–lawyers are banding together to do it. This is a perfectly reasonable response on his part.
    -This tactic makes some sense. Though I frankly think that direct public comment to merchants would be far more effective. In fact, had the Christmas card campaigners had any sense of strategy, they would be sending the cards to the merchants, since the merchants are likely to pay attention to them. Sending them to the ACLU is a mere empty gesture.
    -The threat of nuisance suits, even when they have no legal standing, is another form of regulation by raised eyebrow. The suits, of course, would be frivolous, the private property rights of the merchants are perfectly clear in law.
    -The ACLU, of course, doesn’t step in unless they think the law is on their side, which means they don’t pester merchants at all. This is still, as Darrell quite reasonably points out, regulation by raised eyebrow. But such things are more effective when your gun is actually loaded.
    -But sometimes its better to palcate a nuisance, particularly if there are strong indications of customer support behind it, than to fight it. So the tactics are perfectly sensible.
    -I doubt, however, that you will find many of these lawyers stepping in to counter anything the ACLU says to a school board. And with good reason.
    -But there is no reason why they couldn’t do the same thing when the law, as in the case of Christmas breaks and singing carols,is clearly on their side.
    -Also, complaints that folks like Bill O’Reilly are hardly acting in the “true spirit of Christmas” are beside the point. None of the decorations, whether they say Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas are about the true spirit of Christmas.
    -You will find that true spirit in the Anchoress’ prayers and meditations during Advent. It is something inside us rather than outside us.
    -And, despite whatever Darrell may imply, I have done every thing to encourage and support the Anchoress both in this spirit of prayer, and in her blogging about it, from the very first comment I posted on her blog.

  • http://none Darrell

    Fair enough.

    By the way, “Happy Holidays” is under assault too. A major hotel in Chicago faced an employee discrimination suit a few years ago for requiring their phone reservationists to say “Happy Holidays” to callers. She claimed to belong to a religion that didn’t believe in “holidays”(even though she had a history of taking a wide variety of paid holidays offered by the company-Jewish, Christian, and Muslim). The judge ordered back pay, damages, and a “compromise”–”Season’s Greetings.”

    That said, I believe it is perfectly reasonable to highlight and challenge an organized assault on Christianity. The traditions, words and decorations, are all part of the experience. We celebrate within and openly. And the debate has moved beyond “separation of church and State” in the government and public sectors to the private sector as well. And the ACLU has been challenged when it comes to school boards. A fair number of the cases handled by volunteer lawyers have involved questionable interpretations by individual ACLU lawyers provided to local school boards and their legal representation. Once the school boards see what is really allowed, and what is prohibited, school programs are re-institued. The issue goes beyond the Constitution and its interpretations. It’s also a matter of education and providing sound legal advice–and countering misconceptions and intentional misrepresentations. Activism isn’t limited to the judiciary.

    People do address their concerns to merchants. And take further action when the situation warrants. Remember the “bell ringer” bans at Target and others? They also run for positions on local school boards. But these positions have terms and elections, and since there is power involved, winning is not as simple as entering. Taking action here here to solve an immediate problem is hardly simple. Or likely to get results in the same calendar year.


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