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In Texas Wishing Someone “Merry Christmas” is Now Protected by Law in Public Schools

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Texas is making sure everyone remembers that wishing someone “Merry Christmas” is now protected by law in its public schools. Texas is the only state to so far approve such a law, which some civil libertarians have criticized as unnecessary given the First Amendment. The state received national attention when this law was approved by the state Legislature this summer. The bipartisan law removes legal risks from exchanging holiday greetings in classrooms. It also protects symbols such as Christmas trees, menorahs or nativity scenes, as long as more than one religion is represented and a secular symbol such as a snowman is displayed.

According to The Dallas News, this comes just in time for the holidays, and Texas is making sure that everyone remembers that wishing someone “Merry Christmas” is now protected by law in its public schools — and conservatives are hoping similar measures will gain momentum across America.

Houston Republican Dwayne Bohac, has a sign at home that proclaims: “Be Merry and Stay That Way,” and the law sponsor stated, “I’m proud to stand in defense of Christmas and I urge other states to stop a needless, stilted overreaction to Christmas and Hanukkah.”

A recent PTA Internet posting directed an elementary school not to reference Christmas or use red and green or a tree during its holiday celebrations. The school’s principal said in an email that she and the PTA chose to ban Christmas at the party to avoid “offending anyone.” However, recently passed state law protects traditional holiday greetings and displays similar to this at public schools.

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One of its co-sponsors, Laredo Democrat Richard Raymond, told The Associated Press, “Christmas and Hanukkah obviously do have religious implications for so many,” but they’re “just part of America.”

Jonathan Saenz, the attorney who heads the conservative advocacy group Texas Values, said such cases could spark future legal action because of the new law. “We’re hoping that, as a result of the Merry Christmas Law, we’ll see more school districts taking advantage of this,” Saenz has stated. “And, as a result, we’ll see less school districts being naughty and more being nice.”

Image Credit: Dallas News

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Jaan Posted by on December 10, 2013. Filed under Legal News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

 

 

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