The White House declares a non religious based Holiday Tree

@wlee9696 (596)
United States
November 28, 2009 4:30pm CST
The White House has basically declared war on Christmas. God is good enough to be on the dollar bill but apparently not on the White House Christmas Tree. I understand the separation of church and state but, HELLO Christmas is a Christian Holiday. If the White House doesn't want to support a Christian Holiday then take down the tree and don't participate. I would hate to be the Obamas when they are standing at the pearly gates and God asks them why he wasn't good enough to be on their Holiday Tree. Having a holiday tree is stupid - it serves no purpose. What is your opinion?
4 people like this
7 responses
@rusty2rusty (6747)
• Defiance, Ohio
29 Nov 09
So what is a holiday at christmas time if it is not a christmas tree? I mean really. I have never heard of such a thing. The longer that Obama is president the more and more I do not like him. Heck, I am ashamed to say I voted for the man. I wish I would of voted republican instead for the first time.
1 person likes this
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
29 Nov 09
There are many non-Christian people that celebrate Christmas. Some are forced to. Their business shuts down for the holiday. We are forcing others to recognize our holiday so why not just make it a "holiday".
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
Non - Christians cannot celebrate "Christmas". Christmas is not about Santa it's about Christ. Now they can celebrate other non Christian holidays that occur around this time - but none of these traditions use a Christmas Tree that I am aware of. You don't see the Christians going around demanding that other religions include them in their holidays or alter their traditions in case we are offended by them. Everyone can have their own holidays and traditions - but Christmas is a Christian holiday and we shouldn't have to alter it for fear of offending someone Our money has "In God We Trust" no one if offended to take it. When I put up decorations at work I make them winter decorations that will last through out the winter and make no reference to any religions - I don't put up a Christmas tree there - just snowflakes and snowmen with no mention of any kind of holiday - just the winter season. If the White House can't support Christians then don't support any religions or holidays and take it all down and put up a Snowman.
• United States
29 Nov 09
Sid- Well said. It's true, many here in the US are forced to take off Christian holidays or such. I know that my husband has been forced to work his own Holy Days but then is given off a Christian holiday many times. Namaste-Anora
• United States
28 Nov 09
WLee9696- Well, my answer is that perhaps you ought to spend some time researching the origins of "Christmas". The day that the church uses, December 25th, is not the official birthday of Jesus Christ. It is the day used by Pagans to mark the birth of the Sun God. It was conveiniently "borrowed" by the early church as they borrowed many Pagan customs as they converted those around them. The tree was originally a pagan practice before Christians later brought it to use after the influx of Germans into early America. If you go back to early America you'll find that early Christians had no Christmas Carols, no Christmas decorations, and God forbid no Christmas tree. It would have been considered a sin to have done so. I think if people want to decorate, then let them decorate. I do feel some places decorate way to early for the Yule, but I do enjoy the lights, and so forth. I think having a "holiday" tree is simply stating that all faiths will be respected and not just one. That is what this country is truly about, or at least should be. Every faith has their holy days and they should be respected. In terms of public places I think if things are open to all faiths then I have no issues with them. If I go into a public school, for example, and see "Christian" nativity themes then I begin to ask whose indoctrination is in place. However, if I visit a public school and see snowmen, snowflakes, trees, etc I see only those things that we have thought of as part of winter since the time I was small. I see no issues with those things. Have a wonderful night. Namaste, Anora
1 person likes this
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
29 Nov 09
Anora, you put into words so eloquently what I could not find the words for. You should get a best response!!
1 person likes this
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
I am well aware that the date was first used by the Pagans. Many of the dates we celebrate holidays were first used by the Pagans. But the holiday called "Christmas" is used to celebrate the birth of Christ. Other faiths do not celebrate "Christmas" nor do they necessarily celebrate anything this time of year. The Christians and the holiday of Christmas is the one that is not being respected. It is politically correct to be anything but Christian. The White House should respect all religions - including the Christian one. The government sure doesn't mind having In God We Trust on the money.
• United States
29 Nov 09
The Yule is traditionally celebrated from December 19th-December 25th. It marks the end of the Harvests (Lammas, Mabon, and Samhain) in which food was put up to make it through the winter months. The Yule is about celebrating the birth of the Sun King by welcoming him into the world, and thanking him for the end of the winter to come. I am simplifying this for you, but there is a great deal celebrated during this time. I have a tree each year. My children decorate it, in fact we just started making home-made ornaments for our door decoration yesterday. We have presents. We have wonderful foods. We even have our lights up to help welcome the Sun King. I have no issues with anyone calling it a Holy Tree. When we use the term "Holiday" we are in fact referring to the day as a "Holy Day", and the 19th-25th are all Holy Days for my family. I have looked for the newspaper article you spoke about and could not find it. All I found was a Conservative online blog style website that focused on his trip to Turkey back in April where the President declared we were not a Christian nation. The website then declared we were founded upon Christianity, which is a gross misunderstanding of the founding fathers. If you have not done so already, a link to your newspaper archive would be helpful in this discussion so we could at least have a frame of reference. Perhaps there is something I and others are missing. Namaste-Anora
@musicman6 (2368)
• United States
29 Nov 09
You won't have to worry about Obama standing before God, he and his cronies will never make it up there!
1 person likes this
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
I agree musicman but Obama does not act or support Christian values. But he may make it to whatever form of heaven his real religion believes in. I just wish he would quit hiding his true beliefs - tell us what they are - then stand behind them.
@spalladino (17927)
• United States
28 Nov 09
Where are you getting your information, wlee? Check out snopes.com and factcheck.org and you will see that this is untrue. I guess Barbara Bush will have some explaining to do since she didn't put any religious ornaments on any of the Christmas trees that were in the White House while she was there. I would like to ask you something. Is it your opinion that anyone who doesn't have religious ornaments on their tree doesn't have a Christmas tree but, rather, a holiday tree? I don't believe that I have anything other than colored balls of different shapes and sizes, gold and silver Santa stuff and bows. The angel was replaced by a cool light effect star a couple of years ago. Am I in trouble with God, too?
@coolcoder (2022)
• United States
29 Nov 09
I was waiting for someone to mention Snopes! It's hilarious...someone posts a bit of news and they're automatically referred to snopes.com. Forget God for a moment...Snopes is now the all-knowing entity that has all of the answers to everyone's questions and worries.
1 person likes this
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
From the local newspapers. I live near DC it's all over the news. I didn't say I agreed with Barbara either, but hey Barbara doesn't live there anymore - you can't blame the Bush's forever. Is Christmas about Santa or Christ? Is Easter about the Easter Bunny or Jesus? I didn't say to leave these traditions out but it's kinda of like doing Veterans day and not mentioning anyone who has ever been in the military because you are scared to offend someone of a non military mindset. I am a Christian, I am not ashamed to celebrate the Christ in Christmas. As far as you being in trouble with God - that's between you and him - I just know that if you say you are a Christian you can't be afraid to support God.
@spalladino (17927)
• United States
29 Nov 09
What local newspapers, wlee? Both the Washington Post and the Times are running stories about the arrival of the official White House Christmas tree, which will be displayed in the Blue Room. The 4 or 5 local television news organizations up there, including the Fox affiliate, must have missed this shocking story because none of them have anything about it. I'm originally from that area, too, and have family in Prince George's, Howard and Charles counties. None of them have heard or read anything about this either so, again I will ask you to provide a link to your source. I don't know where you get your opinion that a Christmas tree has to be strictly religious in nature in order to be considered a Christmas tree or for it to be acceptable for Christians to display. Do you even know the history of the tree? It's shape represents the Holy Trinity...it's an evergreen as a symbol of everlasting life. The lights...originally candles...are representative of the stars in the sky when Christ was born. Early trees were biblically symbolic of the Paradise Tree in the Garden of Eden and included colored handmade decorations and small gifts representative of those brought by the three wise men. This is also where the tradition of exchanging gifts at Christmas originated. "I am a Christian, I am not ashamed to celebrate the Christ in Christmas. As far as you being in trouble with God - that's between you and him - I just know that if you say you are a Christian you can't be afraid to support God." I'm not only a Christian, wlee, I'm a Catholic and I've never in my life been told by any Priest that there were requirements for a tree to be considered a Christmas tree.
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
29 Nov 09
I have to kind of agree with this altho I was raised as a Catholic. Christmas is recognized as a national holiday here in America. There are so so many that celebrate Christmas that are not even religious that it is no longer JUST a religious holiday. Ok ...if it is just a "religious" holiday then we should not close workplaces for the holiday. Why put up lights all over town and make such a deal of it? If it is just a Christian holiday then it should be kept within the church. I think they went to this terminology because so many Christians complained that it is a "Christian" holiday. The fact is that there are many that are not Christians that celebrate this day. Some are forced to recognize this day because their place of business is closed for the day. People of other religions are forced to have a day off...some without pay simply because it is considered a holiday. I do not go to church nor do I practice any religion....still this is a holiday for me to get together with family and friends...I love it. There are other non-Christian religions that celebrate the holiday. I'll call it a Christmas tree but I'm ok with it being a holiday tree. It's no big deal. let people call it what they will.
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
Being in a field that works 365 and 24/7 we are never off. I do know that we all work together so that you can have off during the time you celebrate your religious traditions when at all possible. But I don't know when Christmas was made a federal holiday or by who. Maybe someone will look it up for us and post it. My complaint is that the Obamas claim to be Christians but won't come out in public and support the holidays and ideals that pertain to Christianity. This is just another example. If they really aren't Christian then say so. We have got to quit being the United States of the offended and be able to publically support what we believe in.
• United States
29 Nov 09
We- This is the short answer.(This is not a referral link) http://wiki.answers.com/Q/When_and_how_did_Christmas_become_an_official_government_holiday Namaste-Anora
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
30 Nov 09
I'm not a huge fan of Obama. Likewise...not a hater either. I didn't look at this as if he is not Christian but just saying he is. Rather I look at it as if he is just being fair to all that celebrate the holiday....even those that don't believe in Christ. It's just a name...a word.
@madteaparty (2763)
• Japan
29 Nov 09
Christmas was a pagan holiday before being a catholic holiday, and now seems to be more a commercial holiday, so I think is completely normal that they just have a "holiday tree". People put decorations in non religious celebrations, so why can't they do so with the winter holidays? A white tree can represent the winter that has just come
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
Why is it a problem that it is a Christian holiday? Why is it that everyone can have their holidays but when it comes to Christmas we have to neutralize it? That's what I don't understand. Why is it not politically correct to support a religion you believe in? If the Obamas are the Christians they say they are then why can't they have a Christmas tree? Why do they have to change their belief or risk being branded as politically incorrect? If they claimed to be Atheist and did not celebrate Christmas I would not have a problem with them not having decorations. I would in fact have a lot more respect for them because they would be being true to what they believed in.
@spalladino (17927)
• United States
29 Nov 09
"If the Obamas are the Christians they say they are then why can't they have a Christmas tree? Why do they have to change their belief or risk being branded as politically incorrect?" The facts dispute your claim. The story can be found about half way down the page on the first link...which is from one of your local newspapers. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/nov/28/washington-in-five-minutes-33345363/print/ http://www.christmastree.org/whitehouse.cfm
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
I think the facts support my claim - The Obamas refused to pray on national prayer day, they did not even attend church. Obama himself has all references to anything religious removed anytime he is on tv or in a public speaking setting. He is clearly and obviously avoiding associating himself with what he claims are his religious beliefs. This is just another example.
@thea09 (18329)
• Greece
29 Nov 09
I have to say that as the economy is bad they'd set a better example by dragging out an artificial one each year and more environmentally friendly too. I don't particulary have an opinion on how someone decorates a tree but I'd like to ask your opinion on what you think a Jewish president should do, be true to his holidays or celebrate the christmas holidays. I have to say wlee that as an atheist who tolerates all these holidays your statement about what a god would expect on a tree at the pearly gates is one of the most ridiculous I've ever encountered. I wish all of you good christians would take an example from us good atheists and learn to be more tolerant of all these different religions.
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
29 Nov 09
IF he were Jewish I would expect him to celebrate and decorate for all Jewish holidays in a manner that support his religion. If he were atheist I would expect that there were no religious celebrations and/or decorations of any type at the White House. It's all about being who you say you are. It wasn't the tree at the pearly gates thea it was the fact that he was neutralizing the holiday that is clearly meant to celebrate the birth of Christ - he is trying to combine everyone's holiday celebration into one big neutral deal and that demeans everyone's religion. We can be tolerant of every religion but when Christians stick up for what we believe in suddenly we are the ones being intolerant.
@wlee9696 (596)
• United States
30 Nov 09
Because Christmas is a religious holiday God deserves to be allowed to be in the holiday. The article stated that no ornaments could be on the tree that had any religious affiliation. Christmas is all about the birth of Jesus - so why would Jesus not be allowed on the tree? He is the reason for the holiday - there is no other reason. So yes I think that God would want to know why he wasn't allowed to be on a tree celebrating the holiday that is honor of the birth of his son. What possible explanation could there be for a person of supposed Christian faith to deny the inclusion of religious ornaments? It would be like telling the Jews they couldn't display Menorahs during Hanukkah.
@thea09 (18329)
• Greece
30 Nov 09
I really wasn't aware that Christianity had a god that demanded a tree with Jesus on it. Funny I never came across that one before. I thought it was supposed to be more about turning the other cheek, having tolerance and helping those less off, rather than sticking up trees and baubles. It must be a late decree I missed somewhere. It really is strange what interpretations religious followers give to the tenets they follow. Still if your god frowns down on people who don't stick Jesus on a tree well, what can I say. I still say when your economy is in a mess the president should set an example of frugality, they could spend their free time making decorations out of old toilet roll holders and show that to the country at large as a way to cope with rising debt. Then the whole world could follow the example too as there is way too much of this wasting of tax payers money on inconsequential ceremony and trees. Better for the environment too if the president led by example in not having trees cut down.