Where is the Outrage over Valentines in the Stores?

Where is the Outrage over Valentines in the Stores?

It is a slow news week, this week in between Christmas and New Year’s. While shoppers are rushing out for post-holiday bargains media outlets are missing a gigantic story of epic proportions: the epidemic of retailers rushing Valentine’s Day merchandise to sales floors.

From coast to coast, retailers such as Walmart, Target, and Kmart are rushing Valentine’s products with just 45 days or so remaining until the holiday.

Jewelry store are already airing ads on television.

Florists are spamming in-boxes with offers.

Where is the media? Where is the outrage?

Congress Wants to Defend Christmas

Congress Wants to Defend Christmas

Here it is the weekend before Christmas and Congress is getting in the spirit. Looking to pass a new House resolution — which is just another way of saying “we’re-doing-something-but-not-really” — a group of legislators is taking on all the elements of the War on Christmas.

On Thursday, Rep. Doug Lamborn, (R-Colo.) and 36 other Congress members proposed the two-page resolution in an effort to “strongly [disapprove] of attempts to ban references to Christmas.” The festive focus of the act comes on the heels of a number of run-ins with holiday Grinches who have reportedly stolen nativity sets and Santas across the country. The resolution addresses their antics by maintaining that “the symbols and traditions of Christmas should be protected for use by those who celebrate Christmas.”

“The Founding Fathers never intended for references to God and religion to be prohibited in civic dialogue. Despite this, our freedom to fully recognize Christmas is being attacked by a vocal and litigious minority,” Rep. Lamborn told ABC News in an email. “That is why I have introduced House Resolution 448, a bipartisan effort … calling on Congress to protect the traditional symbols of Christmas for use by the vast majority of Americans who do acknowledge the holiday.”

The bipartisan side of the effort is represented by two Democrats, Representatives Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) and Mike McIntyre (D-N.C.). Rahall kept with the holiday theme by explaining his support for the resolution with an allusion to Charles Dickens’ classic “A Christmas Carol.”

“To substituting time-honored greetings like ‘Merry Christmas’ with empty phrases such as ‘Happy Holidays’ – I say Bah Humbug,” Rahall said in a statement. “There’s nothing wrong with publicly recognizing the religious nature and true meaning of Christmas, especially for a Nation like ours founded on the principles of religious freedom and free speech.”

“Our children need to know, especially at Christmas, that it is all right to express their faith publicly,” he added.

In the last Congress, Rahall urged his fellow colleagues to revisit House rules that prohibited members of Congress from including “Merry Christmas” greetings in holiday correspondence with their constituents. His Christmas wish was granted earlier this month when Committee on House Administration Chairwoman Candice Miller (R-Mich.) permitted members of Congress to send seasonal greetings to constituents through the Capitol mail system and include holiday-specific signatures in their notes.

“In the past, including any form of a holiday greeting was banned … this new commonsense policy allows members to share their holiday wishes with constituents in otherwise official communications,” Miller said in a statement. “I feel it is entirely appropriate for members of Congress to include a simple holiday salutation, whether it is Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and so on.”

Long Island School Removes Christ from Silent Night

Long Island School Removes Christ from Silent Night

The song might be titled “Silent Night” but parents at a school in Long Island, N.Y. are anything but silent after hearing their children perform the 500-year old Christmas song Silent Night with all references to Christ removed.

Kings Park school officials removed several religious references, including “Holy infant” and “Christ the Savior,” from the popular Christmas carol before a student concert last week, WCBS 880′s Mike Xirinachs reported. The intent was to avoid offending non-Christians, but the change left others upset.

“I’m not too happy with that, it’s kind of insulting,” parent Robert Dowd said.

“There’s been a lot of changes in the schools and I don’t agree with them,” one man said.

“It’s kind of embarrassing that they would do something like that,” another man said.

The school superintendent and principal of the Ralph J. Osgood Intermediate School have since apologized.

They admit it was a mistake to edit the song and promise it won’t happen again, Xirinachs reported.

Michigan Atheist Goes After Rogue Nativity

Michigan Atheist Goes After Rogue Nativity

A little old lady in Dorr, Michigan placed the 16-inch figures of Joseph, Mary and Jesus in a gazebo in the middle of town, as she reportedly has done for many years. Now a local resident claiming to be atheist is taking offense at the “rogue” display and is threatening the city.

Jeremiah Bannister, who describes himself as an atheist, said the religious symbols have no place in the gazebo, which Township Supervisor Jeff Miling said was constructed with permission by the township on land leased from a private individual by the Downtown Development Authority (DDA).

Bannister is a former pastor, but now calls himself an “unbeliever.” He said he supports the freedom of religious expression, and last spring he helped to clean up the Holy Cross Antiochian Orthodox Church building after it was vandalized with anti-Christian slogans.

Still, he said he objects to “privately owned religious ornamentation on publicly owned property meant to be enjoyed by both the resident and passerby alike, regardless of religious, or nonreligious, convictions.”

Bannister said he contacted township staff, but they said they didn’t know who was responsible for what he called the “rogue nativity scene.”

A local spokesman from the DDA said the elderly woman responsible for the display did seek out and obtain permission to put it there. He expressed confidence that the township is well within the law, which allows nativity scenes on public property as long as they are accompanied by holiday decorations that are not considered religious.

“We have up star lights, winter scenes, all kinds of nonreligious holiday decorations and very little religious decoration,” Miling said.

“I don’t know how Jeremiah Bannister knew the name of the baby because there is no name tag on it … It’s funny, there are all kinds of little figures people put out, but a little baby in a manger offends people.”