Chaz Stevens is back with his Festivus Pole made up of Pabst beer cans. Last year Stevens made headlines by erecting his Festivus Pole in Deerfield Beach, Florida. This year he’s moving it to the Capitol Rotunda in Tallahassee.
Stevens is an atheist and a blogger from South Florida. Unlike other atheists who choose to attack Christianity and Christmas through made-up black baby nativities and open mockery of Christ, Stevens chooses to adopt the Seinfeld-inspired symbol from the made up holiday of “Festivus”, which is described by many as a “festivus for the rest of us” featuring the “airing of grievances” and “feats of strength” that now gets celebrated on December 23rd as a means of poking fun at the stress and commercialism of Christmas.
“I still chuckle, I literally can’t believe there will be a pile of Pabst Blue Ribbon cans in the state rotunda,” said Stevens, a Deerfield Beach resident who applied to the state Department of Management Services to put the Festivus pole on display.
He compared the Festivus pole with the nativity scene as “my ridiculous statement versus what I consider, as an atheist, as their ridiculous statement.”
To us the Festivus Pole makes a lot more sense than the 40-foot billboards in Times Square or the plastic babies of the FFRF. At least Stevens is being honest in his absurdity. While exercising his First Amendment rights of free expression Stevens is promoting what he believes in a constructive way. His point is far easier to discern than the blatant attacks on Christianity by other folks representing atheists.
Atheists would be wise to embrace the Festivus Pole. How else do you symbolize godlessness? The FFRF would like folks to embrace the Winter Solstice, but that’s a slam on still-practicing Pagans who most definitely have their gods. And it is much better than the “We’ll-Slam-Jesus-But-Not-Mohammed” approach of American Atheists.
Here’s to hoping the Festivus tradition takes hold amongst atheists. Besides, it adds so much more light and color to a season that’s already so colorful as it is.