Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A War on Christmas... really?

A partial debunking of the War on Christmas, courtesy of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Of course, we should be aware they are biased in this matter. But check this out:

Among the incidents debunked by Americans United is a tale frequently told by Fox News Channel commentator John Gibson. In Gibson’s new book, The War on Christmas: How the Liberal Plot to Ban the Sacred Christian Holiday Is Worse Than You Thought, he asserts that the public schools in Plano, Texas, have banned students from wearing green and red clothes. The story has been reported uncritically in other media outlets and hyped by Bill O’Reilly but it is apparently untrue.

A spokeswoman for the Plano schools told Americans United that the district has no such policy and expressed frustration that the story continues to circulate. The Plano schools have posted an item on its website denying the rumor. A similar claim about public schools in Saginaw Township, Mich., is also false.

Another story that has surfaced in the media centers on a public school in Wisconsin that allegedly banned songs having a religious “motive or theme” from this year’s holiday program. Officials at the Glendale-River Hills School District have posted a notice on the district website debunking the claim. It points out that songs used this year include “Angels We Have Heard on High” and “I Saw Three Ships.”

Sounds like the War on Christmas is, much like the War on Iraq, being fought based on faulty intelligence.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The French Democracy

Here's a short film depicting one person's reasons for the riots in France.

If I had police putting me in prison for not carrying a passport in my own country, just because my skin color was on the other side of dusky, I might have been out rioting too...

Just a thought.

Smile! You're on Candid Camera... (#76652)

“It's absolute paranoia — at the highest levels of our government,” says Hersh of The Truth Project.

“I mean, we're based here at the Quaker Meeting House,” says Truth Project member Marie Zwicker, “and several of us are Quakers.”

The Defense Department refused to comment on how it obtained information on the Lake Worth meeting or why it considers a dozen or so anti-war activists a “threat.”

Is the Pentagon spying on American citizens?

My question: When did they stop spying?

My prediction: Look to the use-america right to excuse it all away, or do their best to prove how the Quakers are in league with Al Qaeda...

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The War on the War on the War on Christmas

I think this is as good of an encapsulation of the whole mess as you're going to get. (thanks to Crooks and Liars)

My own take? If 96% of Americans celebrate Christmas, and 88% have no problem with people saying 'Merry Christmas,' then how could there actually be a 'war' on it? There's more of a war on Halloween/Samhain, quite frankly.

This is pretty much the same thing that's been going on since the 1920's, when Henry Ford claimed that Christmas was under attack, and the 1950's, when others made the same claims.

Some people, worried that they might offend the easily-offended, take steps so they don't have to deal with someone getting in their face, and then others get even more offended for those persons' spinelessness. Worried someone might get offended over 'holy' while singing 'Silent Night' at a school? Replace it with 'cold' - problem solved ... except that someone, somewhere else complains, and adds it to the iceberg of similar (in)actions, and then BLAM!Instant War on Christmas.

My take? I'm a Pagan who was raised nominally Christian. I celebrate Yule, but I'll be giving and receiving Christmas gifts this season, same as always - after all, Christmas is a pagan holiday. And when I'm at work, I don't even bother to wish people anything; I thank them for shopping with us and let them do the wishing, instead, at which point I thank them and wish it right back, just like I did with Ramadan and Eid over in the UAE.

Where's the problem?

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper?

“Mr. President,” one aide in the meeting said. “There is a valid case that the provisions in this law undermine the Constitution.”

“Stop throwing the Constitution in my face,” Bush screamed back. “It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!”

I’ve talked to three people present for the meeting that day and they all confirm that the President of the United States called the Constitution “a goddamned piece of paper.”

Details >here, courtesy of Capitol Hill Blue.

Well... that about says it all. I hope this gets published far and wide, but somehow I doubt it.