Seattle Airport Christmas Debacle

Don Feder of Jews Against Anti-Christian Defamation (JAACD) and Bill Donohue of the Catholic League for Religious And Civil Rights today issued the following joint statement:

"We are appalled by the decision of the Seattle Airport (SEA-TAC) to remove the Christmas trees which have graced the airport for 25 years.

"We are saddened that this was in response to a local rabbi, who threatened to sue the Port of Seattle if an eight-foot menorah wasn't erected to ‘balance' the Christmas trees.

"Courts have held the Christmas tree is a secular symbol (though associated with the celebration of Christmas). The menorah is clearly a religious symbol. While it would have been nice for the airport to erect a menorah, it wasn't necessitated by the presence of the trees.

"To the rabbi's threat, officials at the airport reacted the way bureaucrats usually do — by choosing the path of least resistance. In this case, taking down the trees — thus depriving the majority of travelers of a little holiday cheer.

"The rabbi should withdraw his threat of legal action if he doesn't get his way. The airport should put the Christmas trees back up — whether or not any other symbol is added. And we should all recall this is supposed to be the season of peace on earth — not animosity on earth and litigation toward man."

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  • Guest

    You cannot help but laugh, cry, sigh, and roll your eyes with this ridiculous turn-of-events. It should be noted that within a couple days, the Christmas trees WERE put back up. Then I would argue that if a menorah was put up (I have no problem with that), the so must the Nativity scene. It is sad that the Christmas tree has lost its religious value in our society, becoming the non-denominational holiday shrub (how festive is that?!). But at least we know how to take the secular and make it supernatural for ourselves and our families.

  • Guest

    I think that the airport took the only prudent course of action at the time that the suit was filed. As a public entity funded by tax dollars, the directorship of the airport exhibited sound stewardship by removing the source of contention, potentially saving the taxpayers’ money.

    I think what Loretta is suggesting is exactly what the airport wanted to avoid; having to placate not only Jews and Christians, but Muslims, Wiccans, Zoroastrians, Buddhists, Hindus, Confucians, and innumerable other “religions” and sects. In addition, the airport saved taxpayer money by not having to hire additional staff to manage all of the trappings of these other religions.

    Michael

    “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried”

    “The poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.” – GK Chesterton

  • Guest

    Financially, this is true,
    But at the same time, isn’t it sad that “prudence” now is defined as financial CYA? (Cover Your Anatomical-part)
    Would you then argue that the virtue of “prudence” would have been better exercised by not having put the trees up to begin with?

  • Guest

    ‘Tis a long held argument that if ‘one’ be honored, is there not breach in not honoring ‘the rest’?

    If Sea-Tac or any ‘public’ (which means I own it as much as the local management) venue has problems, allot areas to each and every petitioner based on their main-festival occasions (local decency and noise ordinances permitting; no Kama Sutra ‘exhibitions’, if you know what I mean), and let them foot all the bills involved. All are satisfied, noting their great feasts, and mark them quite as they would have them marked in the public exhibition. If this means any would object, they must sue the originating exhibitors, not the public venue. The exhibitors, in kind and preparedness, could retain such counsel as the Saint Thomas More offices, who would gladly defend all faith expressions, to provide bulwark legal defense. Think, too, the ecumenical cooperation . . .

    Now, that is not only commonsense, but prudence.

    I remain your obedient servant, but God’s first,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @mail.catholicexchange.com or …yahoo.com)

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