|Obama is NOT declaring a 'War on Christmas.'|
Thanksgiving isn't even here yet and some conservatives on the anti-gay right are already pushing the "War on Christmas."
For the luckily uninitiated, the "War on Christmas" is a yearly event in which conservatives, Fox News, and anti-gay groups either outright lie or blow small incidents way out of proportion to claim that there is some type of "conspiracy" to somehow strip the holiday of its supposed Christian heritage.
In other words, it is merely a fear tactic used to generate big ratings or fundraising profits. And it must be working because America has been exposed to it for so long that many of us are now desensitized to how Christmas is exploited by this awful nonsense.
American Family Association's phony new service, One News Now, has already begun ringing the alarm:
"Those who deny that there's no war on Christmas just have a different reality in which they live," says Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver. The Christian attorney points to one recent example: the Veterans Affairs medical center in Salem, Virginia, which banned Christmas altogether – including the Christmas tree. "This year we've seen a number of attacks on Christmas – [one of them being] the absurd situation that Christmas trees are not permitted," he says, referring to the Salem situation. "That is probably one of the most absurd positions of any government official: that a Christmas tree cannot be permitted because it's Christian and establishes a religion – and yet that's exactly what was happening at Salem, Virginia."
Remember how I said incidents are blown out of proportion?
The situation at medical center is a prime example. According to WSET News 13:
The center's administration sent a memo this week saying they would not be putting up a Christmas tree in the common area, but people were welcome to have them at their desks.The VA said it will have non-secular decorations up, but as a federal building, they cannot only have one religion represented. Last year, they had a Christmas tree as well as Hanukah and Kwanzaa decorations. Because of such a staff uproar after this memo, the V-A director held a meeting today. They decided Christmas trees could be displayed in public areas but they have to be accompanied by the respective symbols of the two other faiths that celebrate during the holiday season.
According to the website, Snopes; which works to refute urban legends, factoids, memes, and rumors, the original memo was reiterating a 2002 federal policy which ensures that holiday displays in public areas of VA facilities do not favor one religious faith group over another and do not appear to be an official endorsement of religion.
Knowing the year this policy was enacted is important because unfortunately many conservatives and conservative sites, such as Allen West and Breitbart are linking President Obama to the controversy by claiming he was ultimately behind the memo when in actuality, according to Snopes, neither the president nor his Administration had anything to do with it:
On 20 November 2015, the web site Breitbart published an article titled "Obama’s VA Facility Bans ‘Merry Christmas,'" claiming:
President Barack Obama’s Department of Veterans Affairs has banned employees at its facility in Salem, Virginia, from saying “Merry Christmas” to veterans.On 21 November 2015, the blog of Allen West followed up with a post titled "Unbelievable: Obama’s VA issues BAN on Christmas trees…this happens IMMEDIATELY":
Sadly, we’ve come to expect attempts at “sanitizing” the Christmas holiday to strip it of Christian connotations that might offend the perpetually-offended, just as we’ve come to expect President Obama’s lack of respect both for our Constitution and the men and women who’ve valiantly served to protect it. But when the Obama administration combined these three fouls into one giant hat trick, it didn’t go over so well with veterans who wish to mark one of the biggest Christian holidays of the year.
And that, my friends, is the War on Christmas in a nutshell. Lies on top of lies, all told in the name of religion. Those who push this mess claim that it is all about saving "America's religious heritage." In reality, it's all about lining their pockets and expanding their influence