New Hampshire’s American Legion Post #24 of Marlborough hosts a Christmas tree lighting every year and every year they invite the local school children. They’ve done it for years without issue. But this year, the schools have a new superintendent and things are different. There will be no mention of Christmas.
Forget the fact that it is not a school-sponsored event. Flyers are provided by the American Legion. The event is not mandatory. It’s on a weekend and the flyers are simply informational.
According to the superintendent, the mere mention of the word “Christmas” must make it a religious event. But removing the word “Christmas” from the flyer without changing the event at all suddenly makes it ok? Apparently, it does! Don’t try to make sense of this non-logic. It won’t work.
You can call that tree a “Holiday” tree all you want, but there’s no other holiday except Christmas uses a decorated tree. And there’s no other holiday except Christmas who recognize Santa Claus as an element of their tradition. Taking the word “Christmas” off the flyer inviting children to a “Tree Lighting” with “Santa & Mrs. Claus” isn’t fooling anyone.
It’s still a Christmas event!
The Commander of the American Legion had this to say about it:
“On Veterans Day, I spoke of the freedoms we have and the veterans who have not only served their country but have given their lives for what we have today: freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from want, and freedom from fear. These are solid foundation stones upon which a great nation is built.
“It seems to me that our new superintendent, Rob Malay, doesn’t understand this. I can’t believe the SAU board approved this.
“I respect all rights; always have. But, do not take away our rights because you may offend someone else.”
You can read more about this story and see the flyer in question at EAGNews.
Photo credit Elizabeth Ashley Jerman