November 19, 2007

Fort Collins Holiday Display Flap Set For Vote; Mayor Opposes Recommendation, Sheriff Plans Christmas Tree Protest

"Fort Collins is becoming more like the imbecilic borough of Boulder than many would like to admit, where social agendas substitute for common sense"--Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden

Council member Diggs Brown said he agrees with the mayor, says he'll vote against the task force recommendation because he doesn't want to be the "grinch" that ruins Christmas for Fort Collins' children (video):
"I will ask City Council to reject any recommendations that diminish Christmas in Fort Collins, especially our traditional display of Christmas trees, colored lights and other traditional secular symbols," Mayor Doug Hutchinson wrote in an opinion piece in Wednesday's The Coloradoan.
Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden is taking a different tack--inviting the public to help him decorate a Christmas tree in protest, complete with red and green lights:
Decrying people he says are taking the "Christ out of Christmas," Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden is inviting the public to help decorate a Christmas tree on his office lawn, and seeking donations to ensure no tax dollars are spent on it.

"Most of the members of the Larimer County Sheriff's Office are Christians and celebrate Christmas. We pray for the continued safety of our brothers and sisters in blue, and recognize that the laws we are sworn to uphold have their very foundation in the laws laid down by God through Moses," Alderden said in his Bull's-eye newsletter. "Our criminal codes are based on Judaic Christian doctrine. To deny that by restricting symbols of Christian faith on public property is beyond the pale."

Alderden devoted his most recent newsletter to the ongoing controversy over the city's holiday light display task force's recommendation that religious symbols be limited in public places. The City Council will discuss the recommendations at Tuesday's meeting.

Because the sheriff's tree will be on county-owned property, it's not subject to the task force's recommendations.
. . .
"There's such a thing as religious tolerance, but you can be tolerant without excluding the majority, and that seems to be the road we're heading down," Alderden said. "We respect people of other faiths and religions. We respect other people's right to have their opinions, but don't ask Christians to hide their faith."
For moonbats, tolerance swings only in one direction. Everyone must accommodate the minority, while the majority must remain silent and traditions are removed to placate the delicate sensibilities of the "offended"--whether real or imagined. This is the ultimate result of nanny-statism and multi-culturalism, and RMN editor Vincent Carroll details what awaits down the slippery slope:
We used to debate whether religious symbols were appropriate — or even legal — on public property at Christmas time. Now we apparently must debate whether anything that makes someone think of Christmas should be displayed.

A city appointed task force in Fort Collins has concluded that the answer is no. Even objects that have no more religious significance than a fat elf with a long white beard might jeopardize the civic goal of ensuring that all citizens “feel valued, welcomed and included.” As a result, for example, the task force would allow no colored lights on city buildings or in common areas inside. And no ornaments. It would even mandate that any “garlands of greenery” be “unadorned.”

Mustn’t let a ribbon give the public the wrong idea.

Apparently the worry is that someone who doesn’t celebrate Dec. 25 might notice a red ribbon and think, “Aha! They’re pushing Christmas.” The next thing you know, the poor fellow will be seeking advice from a therapist on how to cope. What kind of “inclusive” city would willingly subject its citizens to such traumatic ordeals? Better to limit displays to white lights, icicles, snowflakes, snowmen, penguins, polar bears, and skis (all declared harmless by the task force) rather than flirt with the harrowing possibility that a string of colored lights might trigger a bout of depression in a sensitive passerby.
. . .
Officials who decide to scrub one holiday from the calendar in the name of a uniting “all city residents and visitors in the spirit of community celebration” may soon discover their work is more complicated than they thought.
Previous coverage of the Fort Collins "holiday task force".

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