During the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump made a promise to restore the phrase “Merry Christmas.” Regardless of whether one believes the holiday requires repair, the current administration has announced its recent completion of holiday decorations to the White House, including the annual Nativity Scene. Some millennials, however, have decided to Grinch the season by taking offense to the President’s rights to free expression.
Emily Barron, a columnist for the University of Alabama’s student-run newspaper the Crimson White, published a piece stating that citizens should be disallowed from airing their spiritual outlooks in public. She especially critiqued the Trump family’s decision to bring back the annual Nativity Scene. She writes:
“Religion in America is something that should be practiced within the confines of an individual’s home and place of worship, not the White House. Other countries bring together religion and government, however those countries are not the United States. The United States is a country of immigrants, and as a country of immigrants, our President should not force the Christian religion down everyone’s throat by placing it on the lawn of the White House.”
As a fellow secular millennial, I could not disagree more with Barron’s mislead proclamations. The Christmas adornments represent the First Amendment rights held by all Americans and are not an impedance on the separation between church and state.
If Barron would care to live in a nation that silences particular outlooks, then perhaps she should move. The diversity of perspectives and respect for our differences prevalent in everyday life are what make our country beautiful. By suggesting that citizens should conceal their spiritual practices, Barron is attempting to rid the U.S. of its uniqueness and displaying her intolerance.
Lastly, assembling the nativity scene is not indicative of imposing the faith on others. As a college educated Anthropology major, Barron should have the capacity of witnessing the absurdity of her statements. Her bigoted opinions may not come as a surprise, as Odyssey News, which originated as a student-run source from Indiana University, recently released a similar article accusing the Nativity Scene as symbolizing disrespect to those of other beliefs.
It appears that many far-left youths today are troubled by the display of mainly Christian sentiments, contradicting their façade of tolerance. After all, if they are to detest one faith, should they not reject them all in the name of equality? Many are now realizing that Egalitarianism was never the aim.
With the holidays fast approaching, families across the U.S. are getting into a festive spirit. Our great nation allows the open celebration of various viewpoints, a freedom we ought to cherish. Some millennials nevertheless feel that the First Amendment should be broken to avoid offense to the hypersensitive. From your friendly neighborhood secularist, I say “Merry Christmas” to them all.