A suburban New York school teacher faces disciplinary action for telling her second grade students there is no Santa Claus…! In a recent survey of Santa Claus denying adults, 67% report they hate the holiday because it means lines, putting on weight, and getting into debt…!
A very long time ago in a faraway land called the United States, Christmas was a quiet family affair in virtually every household. As Dickens reports in his own England, families either kept the day with joy or they simply bah-humbugged it away. Not many were waging wars over it.
Behold 2011 — not choirs of angels in the heavens, but legions of lawyers in the courts.
Their anger is not so much based on religious principles — they are not speaking for Judaism or Islam — but rather on constitutional principles. Principles quite separate from the flesh-and-blood realities of December family life. More with the fleshless-and-bloodless theories of Liberty. You know that stirring word everyone uses, but which rarely puts food in the mouths or smiles on the faces of any children.
Why then do these “causes” seek a thin kind of justice which seems to serve no purpose for any families I know? I believe this is where the battle cry comes in: “It’s the principle of the thing!” A word I have yet to find thrilling the heart of any second grader I’ve met. [In exquisite irony, it was my own second grade when that little monster Andy freed me from my unprincipled belief in Santa!]
And yet, there may still be something to be said for my constitutional liberty to dismiss the jolly old fella and all the sacredness that goes with it. I hear the Supreme Court has banned any more Nativity Scenes in the nation’s capitol. They can’t find Three Wise Men anywhere in town….
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