A well meaning perhaps, but closed minded, soul wrote this letter to a Maryland paper today.
I am responding to the announcement I heard regarding Wachovia Banks decision not to place Christmas trees in any of their establishments because they may be offensive. Offensive to whom? I am suggesting that all Christians remove any and all accounts from Wachovia Bank, because if anything is offensive, it is their Christmas tree decision. It is time that Americans stand up for what they believe and not allow our traditions to become moot because they may offend someone in the minority. This country was founded on the belief of freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. The Christmas season is time for peace and acceptance of all faiths and beliefs - not the time to try and take Christ out of the season.
There was of course no way in hell I was not going to respond once this was bought ot my attention. I doubt they run by my reply was as follws
In response to the recent letter by xxxxxxxx I can tell you as a Wachovia customer and stockholder in Wells Fargo, Wachovia’s parent company, her assumption is simply incorrect. It is the choice of each branch manager to display a Christmas Tree or not. I would also like to make the point that our country was founded on the principle of freedom of religion for all religions, not just yours or mine. Even if her assumption was true, to call for a boycott of a business based on their recognition or lack thereof of your particular religion is completely and totally un-American. Should we boycott the Jewish establishment because he does not put up a Christian symbol? Should we avoid doing business with atheists, Hindus, Buddhists or any other merchant or service provider who does not display artifacts of a particular faith?
We would do well to recall that religious freedom extends to all faiths, and even to a lack of faith. We may choose to do business with whom we wishes but to call for a boycott of any business based on their shared participation in your particular holiday runs against every single value upon which our nation was founded. Christmas is not a time of faith and belief for all religions. Celebrating the birth of Christ is uniquely Christian. Instead of asking for a boycott of a business we should practice some of the tolerance that is one of the hallmarks of Christ’s teachings.
I rather suspect in a world torn by war, poverty, hunger and disease God has more on his mind that where you keep your checking account. Perhaps those of us who call ourselves Christians should focus on those issues and let others bank where they wish without religious interference.
Before you ask, I have a great big honker tree in my house and celebrate the holiday with zeal. I also think that businesses and municipalities should be free to place symbols of the holiday wherever they so choose. They should also feel free not to without fear of boycott or discrimination from those of us who celebrate Christmas. That’s the American way I was taught and believe in to this day.
I am off to Wachovia to open accounts for my kids as an expression of the real meaning of freedom of religion. Merry Christmas!