Every December, it seems, we find instances of atheists and atheist groups trying to stop Christmas decorations on public property or “counter” those decorations with displays of their own. Here are just a handful of instances we have found this year from around the country.
- The Freedom From Religion Foundation is trying to end an Indiana city’s 50-year-old Nativity display. According to WLWT News, the group has threatened for three years in row to file a lawsuit against Franklin County to stop the Nativity display that goes on the county courthouse lawn each year.
- In Chicago, the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the Chicago Coalition of Reason have placed a banner that reads, “Are you good without God? Millions Are,” near a Nativity scene in a local park. According to local media, the banner has been vandalized twice in the past two years. We do not condone vandalism of public displays, but the banner is clearly meant to counter the Nativity scene.
- The Cherokee County Courthouse in Texas has come under fire from the American Humanist Association for the Nativity scene it placed on its lawn this year. Texas’ Attorney General has publicly announced his support for the display.
- In Tennessee, Maury County Commissioners decided not to approve a Nativity scene on the courthouse lawn due to fears of a possible lawsuit.
- In Portsmouth, Virginia, the local sheriff put Christmas decorations–including a Nativity scene–up on public property using his own personal money after the city left the courthouse of its budget on holiday decorations. The ACLU has said it opposes the decorations.
- In Flordia, Satanists and atheists have teamed up to place a display depicting Satan’s fall from Heaven near a Nativity scene in the state capitol.
These are just a few examples we were able to find by browsing different news stories from around the country. As we have written before, Christmas displays in Arkansas have been targeted by atheist groups as well–including the Nativity scene that has graced the State Capitol lawn for many years; a bulletin board display a Paragould public school teacher put up a few years back; the Nativity scene on the Baxter County Courthouse lawn; and so on.
These examples ought to give anyone who does not believe there is a “war on Christmas” a reason to pause.