John Gibson, gutsy anchor of Fox News’ “The Big Story,” is to be commended for titling his latest book The War on Christmas, for as Gibson shows, the attempt by certain groups to prohibit Christmas displays is not simply an academic difference on how to interpret the Establishment Clause but a desire, by anti-Christians, to stamp out of society any reference to Christmas. To wit, proscribing the innocuous greeting “Merry Christmas!” or placing the word Christmas over December 25 in the school calendar.
Gibson’s book chronicles schools from Eugene, Ore., to Maplewood, N.J., that have not simply forbidden singing carols but even the reading of Dickens’ literary classic A Christmas Carol. Gibson illustrates that often these decisions are made not by secularists but by school officials warned by the ACLU that it will bring the school and its officials to court unless all seasonal Christmas symbols are expunged from the premises.
The schools cave because they don’t have the money for a lawsuit, and they know the ACLU has abundant funds and pro bono lawyers eager to secularize the schools.
Worse, knowing that the schools are financially incapable of fighting them, the ACLU calls unconstitutional that which the Supreme Court has ruled constitutional, e.g., the display of a Christmas tree as opposed to a crèche. Nonetheless, schools capitulate and forfeit their constitutional rights out of financial inability to mount a defense no matter that the law is on their side.
In effect, the ACLU is interpreting our laws regarding the 1st Amendment—not the judges. As Gibson writes: “In fact, the tactics and strategy of the ACLU in its war on Christmas are the very definition of bullying.”
Where is this war being fought? One might think it is restricted to liberal bastions such as Chicago, Boston, San Francisco and Los Angeles. But as Gibson points out: “As you read these pages, Christianity is under attack in bright red states such as Oklahoma, Georgia, Texas, and Indiana.” It appears ACLUniks can bring districts to court even though they don’t live there nor have children who attend and can claim being “offended.”
How far are liberals willing to go? Again, Gibson: “It’s worse than you think. Liberals’ attacks now focus on symbols regarded by most Americans as secular, the colors red and green.”
Some schools and offices simply remove any traditional seasonal sign of Christianity out of a desire not to “offend” non-Christians. Yet Kwanzaa signs, menorahs, and Islamic symbols are placed without regard to how Christians may feel. The upshot: Our country’s 85% Christians are asked to erase their heritage, while the remaining 14% exercise a “tyranny of the minority.” The message: In America, Christianity must take second place to Islam, Africa and Judaism.
The book recounts how Indiana University Law School removed its Christmas tree at the insistence of one radically left professor, Florence Roisman. She lamented that “a Christmas tree makes her feel less welcome, less valued, that we are allowed to be present by sufferance only.” Sounds to me like ethnic insecurity and stinginess.
In his daily “My Word” segment, Gibson is pithy, personal, engaged, not politically correct, truthful and courageous. But, in this book, I did not hear his “voice” and usual passion.
John Gibson reveals how in every village square in America, the ACLU has turned a period of joy into a season of battle. Many believe its agenda goes beyond Christmas to the evisceration of American culture, using multiculturalism to elevate other cultures while minimizing and denigrating the American culture and ethos. But, as Gibson recounts, a new generation of lawyers has arisen who have begun to fight and challenge the ACLU hegemony.