Recently a headline in my morning newspaper read: “Judge rejects Nativity displays in Santa Monica.” Under the headline is a photo of Damon Vix, a vocal atheist, who is so offended by Christian symbols that he made it his goal to undermine a Christmas tradition the people of Santa Monica have enjoyed for 60 years. Ironically but not surprisingly, a muddled-headed judge allowed Vix to use the First Amendment to deny Christians and Jews in Santa Monica their rights under the First Amendment.
The Associated Press article carrying the story began as follows: “There’s no room for the baby Jesus, the manger or the wise men this Christmas in a Santa Monica park following a judge’s ruling last week against churches that tried to keep a 60-year Nativity tradition alive after atheists stole the show with anti-God messages.” The judge in question—U.S. District Judge Audrey B. Collins—turned down a request from the Santa Monica Nativity Scenes Committee to allow the 60-year tradition to continue while their lawsuit worked its way through the slow-as-molasses court system.
Some background is in order. Three years ago, Damon Vix set up a booth in Palisades Park next to the booths set up by local churches. His booth, of course, was filled with signs that denigrated the beliefs of Christians and Jews. Then, last year he rounded up a pack of fellow atheists to flood city hall with applications for the limited number of booths in the park for the Christmas season—booths that had traditionally gone to churches for their Christmas displays. Vix and crowd were able to monopolize the park receiving permits for 18 of the 21 booths available, but rather than put up Christmas displays they filled their booths with people and signs denigrating Christian and Jewish beliefs and traditions. Predictably, weak-kneed members of the Santa Monica City Council caved in to the vocal demands of the atheists rather than man up and tell Vix and crowd to go pack sand.
This is what things have come to in America’s left-leaning court system. People are allowed to murder innocent unborn babies for the sake of convenience with no questions asked. But let a non-Christian be offended and the situation becomes a federal case—literally, and with a predictable outcome. Since this is the case, I have a question. Maybe a reader can answer it for me. Where in the Constitution does it say that Americans have a right to not be offended? If there is such a statement, I cannot find it.
This being the case, I have a challenge for Christians and conservatives: This Christmas rather than stand by and fume in frustration as liberals and atheists vent their artificial outrage over long-standing Christmas traditions, stand up and be counted. Here are some things we can say to those who find Christmas symbols so offensive:
- Get over it. I find broccoli offensive. I don’t like the taste or smell of it. Consequently, I don’t eat it. But I do not insist that others who like broccoli be denied their right to eat it.
- I find your artificial outrage offensive, but I typically ignore it because the First Amendment gives you the right to express it, just as it gives me the right to do things you find offensive.
- Participating in Christmas traditions is voluntary. If you don’t want to participate, don’t—but don’t tell me I can’t.
- Go to the library and read a copy of the Constitution. You will find nothing in it about the right to not be offended.
- Open a dictionary and look up two words: tolerance and bigotry. You do not practice the former and are guilty of the latter.
Liberals and atheists have been successful in undermining Christmas traditions and other Christian beliefs only because too many of us have sat back and let them get away with it. This Christmas, stand up to the artificial outrage crowd and let them know you are not going to take it anymore.