"And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." --I Corinthians 13
Americans began the unholy trend in 1962, when prayer in public schools was outlawed. In the 1970s, American women began looking for Mr. Goodbar and men began turning inward to avoid being victimized by Superwomen. Post Roe v. Wade, sexed-up America and hedonism led to abortion-mania, abandoned babies and neglected children. Schools no longer celebrated Christmas or Easter, or even mentioned the words -- lest they risk being labeled Bible thumpers. Don't even think about tossing bills into Salvation Army kettles at Target or shopping malls run by Kimco Realty -- because the bell-ringing Christian soldiers are not welcome.
No surprise, then, by this headline in Thursday's editions of The Washington Times: "U.S communities fail to keep 'Christ' in Christmas."
As the article pointed out, some people even consider saying the seasonal phrase "Merry Christmas" a blasphemy. What it is is anti-Christian.
"School districts in Florida and New Jersey," the article said, "have banned Christmas carols altogether, and an 'all-inclusive' holiday song program at a Chicago-area elementary school included Jewish and Jamaican songs, but no Christmas carols."
With so many PC groups on the prowl these days, you never know what's next on the list. I wouldn't be surprised in the least to learn that the "PC smotherers" want to ban the word "holiday" itself (holy + day) or take "Santa" (saint) out of Santa Claus.
Blessedly, these and other anti-Christian efforts give rise to groups like the God Squad, do-gooders based in Chicago who defy the American Jewish Congress, American Atheists and (God forbid) the American Civil Liberties Union and build a nativity scene in the Windy City. Another group, the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), which is based in Arizona, issued a legal primer regarding the public square and Christmas. It cites, the article said, "court decisions made from 1963 to 2004 that neutralize the notion the U.S. Constitution requires government officials to eliminate public mention of Christmas."
As Greg Scott of ADF said: "The fact is 96 percent of us celebrate Christmas. For a small minority to force their way and their will on the public majority is unconscionable ... people are tired of efforts to sanitize religious expression. This policy against even instrumental Christmas music in schools violates common sense and is neither necessary nor constitutional."
Indeed, someone somewhere is always going to be offended by something -- whether that something is religious in nature or not.
Religious liberty means precisely that: You are free to worship, pray or sing praises to the Almighty and, conversely, you are free not to.
The anti-Christianites take on the ridiculous. A principal in Kirkland, Wash., (population 45,000), lowered the curtain on a production of the classic "A Christmas Carol" because feeble Tiny Tim says, "God bless us everyone." Other communities condemn the term "Christmas" trees and instead refer to them as "community" trees. It ain't the same.
Trying to please all of the people all of the time is impossible. Trying to please the "speech-code fascists," particularly those who are acting un-Christianlike, produces a never-ending stream of lawsuits, apologies and excuses. Target, for example, banned the Salvation Army's red-kettle program because of requests from other nonprofits. How uncharitable of Target's executives.
The Salvation Army is my favorite charity. I take my from wallet and give to them because, like the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army doesn't play politics, and helps anyone and everyone. The Army's substance-abuse treatment programs are among the most successful in the nation. But do you know what's truly remarkable? What is now the Salvation Army began as the evangelist mission of William Booth in London in 1852 to aid the least, the last and the lost. After all these years, the Salvation Army remains a faithful guiding light.
I guess I'll have to put Target, Best Buy, Circuit City and some other retailers on my naughty list, and spend my Christmas dollars elsewhere.
Perhaps I'll visit Wal-Mart in search of a CD with Kate Smith singing, as only Kate Smith could, "God Bless America" or Billie Holiday with a soul-stirring rendition of "God Bless the Child." And while I'm at Wal-Mart, I can tip my wallet to a red kettle and toss a smile to the Salvation Army bell ringers for faithfully reminding us of the reason for the season. God bless them and the work they do in His name.