Ohio Roundtable: The Public Square - ACLU / Holidays
When is it illegal to say, "Merry Christmas"?
According to the ACLU policy book, policy number 81,
"The observance in public schools of such occasions as Christmas, Hanukkah, and
Easter, as religious holidays, is contrary to the separation principles." In other
words, the ACLU sees observance of such holidays as an unconstitutional violation of the
separation of church and state.
So what should we tell our children? Should we not observe
such holidays in public schools or should we ignore them? Should we tell our kids that
such holidays are not religious and sort of fake it?
What are the ramifications of the ACLU way of looking at
the world and public education in particular? Think about it. Why are our children
permitted off school for Christmas or Easter? For that matter, why shouldn't public
schools meet on Sundays? The traffic's slow - especially on Easter Sunday!
Furthermore, what about Christmas? Should a school teacher
be jailed for wishing a student Merry Christmas? Violating the separation of church and
state. After all, the word contains the name of Christ - Christmas, Christ. To admonish
one to be merry about a holy day or a feast commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ is
obviously a religious statement.
For a public school teacher to utter such a religious
admonition on public property to a student is obviously a violation of the constitutional
separation of church and state. This is the way life might be if the ACLU had its way.