The La Jolla Christmas Parade and Holiday Festival could soon be called something else. Local media reports a movement is afoot to change the name and that there is little opposition to dropping the word “Christmas” because it allegedly excludes Jews, Muslims, atheists and other non-Christian groups.
The San Diego County Diversity and Inclusiveness Group, formed by former La Jolla Town Council trustee Howard Singer to change the name of the La Jolla Christmas Parade and Holiday Festival to one that does not reference a particular religion, is proposing the changes. On May 18, the La Jolla Democratic Club, of which Singer is a member, voted 22-0 to support the name change.
“I was kind of surprised,” said Club President Derek Cassady. “When it was brought up, I thought there might be wide discussion and even some traditionalists would say that it should be left like it is, but, by golly, there was no appetite for dissent. For people there, it just felt like they understood and felt like this should be the way it is.”
Although the City of San Diego’s Human Relations Commission advisory group has acknowledged that the parade name does not violate any city laws or ordinances, it has also expressed its support for the name change and urged parade organizers to enter into mediation with the Diversity and Inclusiveness Group — an offer parade organizers declined.
That Christmas as a national holiday was founded on secular principles has no bearing in the discussion of the parade name in San Diego.