WASHINGTON — Officials in an Ohio town canceled their Christmas parade this year to avoid huge legal fees in defending the tradition from possible lawsuits by religious groups.
The legal hurdle surfaced when the private group that for 28 years had funded the parade in Amelia village recently announced it could no longer do so, prompting the village mayor to step in with public funds.
On a lawyer's advice, the mayor decided to change the name of the event from Christmas Parade to the more neutral "Holiday Parade" to avoid lawsuits and abide by constitutional rules about the separation of church and state. [...]
However, the name change did not sit well with local church officials, who promptly threatened to boycott the event if it was no longer called "A Christmas Parade."
We've become a nation full of Grinches.
And since LarryD reminds us to have a "Merry Tossmas," I'd like to share the "Holiday" letter I've sent to a few catalog companies in the past:
I just received your (insert company name) "Holiday 20--" catalog. Though it was nice of you to send it, I'm afraid my family and I don't celebrate 'Holiday.' In fact, though I'm embarrassed to admit it, I'm not even sure what or when 'Holiday' is, though I suspect that it's sometime in late December.
My family and I celebrate a small, quaint religious day we like to call "Christmas." I don't suppose you've heard of it, but it has ancient roots, and many lovely customs and traditions. One of those traditions is to give our loved ones gifts on this day, and companies used to send me catalogs to help me pick out Christmas gifts for my family and friends.
I'm afraid, in recent years, I've very inappropriately been purchasing 'Holiday' gifts by mistake! You can imagine my chagrin--I wouldn't give a Jewish friend a Christmas gift for Hanukkah, so I certainly shouldn't give 'Holiday' gifts to my loved ones for Christmas. Now that I've realized this terrible faux pas, I no longer intend to shop from stores or catalog who advertise only 'Holiday' gifts but who do not use the word "Christmas" to describe any of their merchandise. I would be ashamed to fill my house with 'Holiday' decorations and 'Holiday' cheer when I don't even celebrate 'Holiday'!
So, though I appreciate your thoughtfulness in sending me your Holiday catalog, I won't be using it. Not unless the kids decide to cut it up to make confetti for our Christmas crackers.