Christmas Grinches

Christmas is almost upon us and no Christmas season would be complete without the Grinches coming out to steal Christmas from all of us. I’m putting together a few stories I’ve found here and there.Grinches come in all shapes and sizes. Some ruin Christmas for a single family. Others try to ruin Christmas for whole communities.

First, there is the attempt by the Freedom From Religion Foundation to force a Texas Town to take down a nativity scene. I have already mentioned this here.

The so-called War Against Christmas is coming to a head in a Texas town Saturday, as protesters from across the country will be rallying against a nativity display put up in front of the town’s courthouse.

A Wisconsin-based group called the Freedom From Religion Foundation took major issue when they heard that the Christian display was put up outside of the Henderson County courthouse, prompting them to write a letter of complaint.

But a letter from out-of-state isn’t going to leave the people of Henderson rattling in their cowboy boots, as the Attorney General Greg Abbott has boosted the beef to a Texas-sized proportions.

ur message to the atheists is don’t mess with Texas and out Nativity scenes or the Ten Commandments,’ Mr Abbott told Fox News & Community.

Fair warning: The Attorney General stood up for the town’s right to a nativity

The FFRF sent a banner to the court house that it wanted displayed, with a very different message then the birth of Christ.

The group’s banner read ‘At this season of the Winter Solstice, let reason prevail.’

‘There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world. Religion is but a myth & superstition that hardens hearts & enslaves minds,’ it finished.

A mystery man put the sign up on Wednesday on a tree next to the nativity scene in Athens, Texas, about 70 miles south east of Dallas, but it was removed shortly by sheriff’s deputies about 10 minutes later.

Though Judge Richard Sanders may have ordered its removal because of the missing forms and compliance with city procedures, the state’s Attorney General is taking a much more philosophical stance.

There is a school district in New York that has banned the phrase “Merry Christmas”.

New York State’s Batavia City School District is taking the “merry” out of Christmas. The school board is banning the use of the phrase “Merry Christmas” and they have a list of other holiday activities deemed “unacceptable”.

The school board has asked principals to enforce a policy banning Christmas and Hanukah decorations in classrooms.

In a memo titled “Religious expression in the schools” the board lists unacceptable holiday activities. Teachers have been told they cannot use the phrase “Merry Christmas” and it quote “should not be included in any spoken or written remarks.” That includes songs.

I guess the war on Christmas has expanded to include Hanukah. Maybe I shouldn’t be too surprised at that. A festival commemorating people who fought for the freedom to practice their religion is not the sort of thing we want to teach kids nowadays.

Here is a neighborhood association that takes exception to one man’s Christmas decorations.

It is not unusual to see a crowd in front of Thyno Zgouvas’ house.

“We come out every year. It’s probably the best show in town,” says one passerby.

For eight years Zgouvas has wowed folks with 70,000 blinking lights.

This Christmas, that number was cut in half.

“The homeowner’s association decided that it was a nuisance–which I completely disagree with,” says Zgouvas.

But other residents–like Terry Phillips–raised concerns about the amount of traffic the show brings to the neighborhood.

“I’ve come home sometimes and it’s taken me 30-45 minutes to get to my house.”

Others worried it would be difficult for emergency vehicles to find homes because of it.

Zgouvas downsized the show to appease the homeowner’s association–all the while making a point of his own with HOA signs and blow-up grinch figures behind them.

“They’ve blown it way out of proportion, I feel,” says Zgouvas.

Each year Mr. Zgouvas puts music to his light show and all you have to do is turn up your radio. He says he does it to keep music from blaring out into the neighborhood.  This year, it’s the theme to the Grinch.

“I have to take my stand just because it’s Christmas lights,” he says.

I understand their concern about traffic, but still.

The Obama Administration tried to get into the season with a Christmas Tree Tax, but wisely backed off. I hope Obama fired whoever came up with that idea. Actually, it seems that the Christmas Tree growers wanted it.

Let’s get one thing straight at the outset: Yes, the Obama administration did propose a tax on Christmas trees, and no amount of obfuscation by its knee-jerk defenders can change that fact. The Department of Agriculture planned to impose a 15-cent duty on every Christmas tree sold by tree-sellers who unload more than 500 trees a season. That is an excise tax — a tax on a specific product, levied per unit of sale, just like federal taxes on tobacco and gasoline.

The proposal provoked an uproar, and the White House will now “revisit this action.” That’s politician-speak for “run from the issue like a scalded dog.”

Was the tax sought by Christmas-tree growers? Indeed it was. They wanted the federal government to run a Christmas-tree promotion campaign, much like those it runs for eggs and other agricultural products. But that’s no excuse. As Ilya Schapiro of the Cato Institute notes, this little tale epitomizes everything wrong with government today.

Here is a Grinch that really did steal one family’s Christmas.

A family came home to find the gifts under their Christmas tree stolen.

The family arrived at their apartment in the 500 block of F.M. 1488 in Conroe Wednesday and found that their front door had been kicked in.

“Someone came in and took away my hard work,” mom Felicia Cunningham said. “My hard work and what I’ve done for my kids.”

Conroe police said the thieves unwrapped all the presents before taking off with the ones that they liked.

“The ruined my Christmas because they took my stuff,” Cunningham’s 9-year-old daughter said. “They just came into the wrong house.”

Cunningham, a single mother, also has an 11-year-old daughter whose Christmas was destroyed.

“Why me? Why this apartment? Why here? Why my kids’ gifts?” Cunningham asked.

I am sure that Santa has lots coal to put in the stockings of all of these Grinches

Here is a slightly different take on Christmas.

Few people engaged in the “War on Christmas” are aware that at one time it was a crime in Massachusetts to celebrate Christmas. Oh sure, some will say, count on liberal Massachusetts to pass a law against Christmas. But it was Calvinist Massachusetts, in the days of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, the Pilgrims and Puritans, that established penalties for the observance of Christmas Day “by abstinence from labor, feasting, or any other way.”

Those Puritans seem to have been as much fun as modern secularists.

And, finally, to end on a lighter note,  here  is a scientific discussion over just how strong the Grinch actually is.

 

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