Christmas in Oskaloosa
There's a Christmas tree in the Oskaloosa, Iowa, town square. Red wreathes adorn the light poles. But there is no nativity scene. The town took it down after a resident complained that it was a government endorsement of Christianity. Not that the resident who complained has anything against Christianity. She just thinks that all religions should be represented. Aiyanna Looney explained, "This is about fairness. This is about representing minority religions and respecting everybody who lives in this town. Even if there's only one Muslim family or one
Hindu family, they're here. They deserve respect."
City Councilman Aaron Garced thinks the nativity scene should go back up. "I believe our religious freedoms are being taken away by a select few people. I think this person who complained is in the minority and I think I speak for the majority."
I'm a big believer in majority rule. But I'm also a believer in minority rights. It is entirely possible that those who practice other religions might find a uniquely Christian display on government property offensive. Should we just say "Tough. You're outvoted. Live with it"?
If an individual wants to go nuts with their Christmas celebration, I say go forit. If you want to see the ultimate Christmas display, check out http://www.flixxy.com/best-christmas-lights-display.htm
The guy had to hire three off-duty policemen to handle the traffic. I think it's great. It is his right as a citizen to express his love of the season in this way. But it is another thing entirely for the government to publicly endorse a religious display and possibly make some of its citizens feel like they are being put down for their beliefs.
Am I just being overly sensitive here?