Battle Rages Over ‘Holiday Tree’ Lighting In Mount Sinai; Some Want ‘Christmas’ Back

Online Petition To Change Annual Ceremony's Name Now The Talk Of Town

MOUNT SINAI, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) –– It’s usually a controversy to call a Christmas tree event a “holiday event,” but this year in one Long Island town it’s the other way around and it’s causing people to pick a side.

As CBS 2’s Ann Mercogliano reports, while the ceremony may be centered on a big tree, some residents are complaining, saying it’s not enough about Christmas.

The annual “holiday tree lighting” ceremony in Mount Sinai has been the way here. No question, when this tree is lit on Sunday it will look just like a Christmas tree, but the event, residents say, has always been called the “holiday tree lighting” and they want to know: where’s the Christmas in that?

“A Christmas tree is a Christmas tree,” said David Black of Port Jefferson Station. “I want it to be called a Christmas tree. Yes, that’s what it is!”

“I just think it’s a menorah, it’s a Christmas tree and we should respect each other,” added Patricia Snider of Miller Place.

WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs On The Story

The holiday tree lighting has been a tradition in Mount Sinai since 1996, and it’s always been called just that.

But now calls from residents to change the name has sparked a discussion and even an online petition — with hits coming in from across the country.

The Heritage Trust non-profit that currently runs the lighting said it is staying neutral on this one, but a name change could be on the way.

“Whatever the will of the community is, that’s what the Heritage non-profit will do,” Heritage Trust’s Lori Baldassare said.

While there are calls to include the word “Christmas” in the name of the ceremony, the thought of changing tradition here doesn’t sit well with everyone.

“If they’re against it don’t come. If they’re for it, they come, but there shouldn’t be anything bad,” said Angelo Pontillo of Coram.

“What difference does it make what you call it? It’s a tree lighting, you’re gonna light the tree,” added Bob Brasen of Sound Beach.

“Christmas is for everybody,” a man told WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs.

The Heritage Trust said it has sent out a survey to residents asking what they want and based on the results of the survey they’ll decide what they’ll do. The Trust said they’ll announce at the tree lighting on Sunday what the community chose to do with the name.

What do you think? Should it be a Christmas celebration or a “holiday” celebration? Sound off in the comments section below!

  • Gail

    Using a tree with decorations is written about in the Bible (Jeremiah 10:3,4)
    “For the customs of the people are vain; for one cuttth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.”
    Now the LORD was telling Jeremiah about the heathen and how they worshipped…so be glad that Christ paid for the sins for those that believe…

    there you have the beginning of the custom of what we refer to as Christmas trees. The name “Christmas tree’ came about during the time that Constantine swept the Roman Empire of all false gods but couldn’t get them to lay down their custom of decorating a tree…so eventually it took on the name of Christ for that season which prior had been a celebration to the pagen gods that the heathen believed in for the celebration of their previous honor to other gods than the one of Christ (YESHUA). No different than when a man sells a building that used to host the sale of newspapers and then it now hosts the sale of clothing…no longer known for its previous but for what it represnts now.
    The evolution of the Christmas tree to feature Santa is trying to take away the Christmas story but it is that that the gospel will still be preached and those that hear will hear rather than just trust in the tree or the santa claus.

  • Meme Meyagi

    what is done about 7 million mooslime terrorists living in usa?

  • lietenantdan

    Rodin I hope that you can understand that the world does not revolve around you.

    Your remark is self centered and hateful. You have the right not to believe in whatever you choose but please do not intrude on my right to believe in what I want to believe in.
    Sorry to say that it is my opinion that your not as smart as you think you are,
    it is apparent that you are in fact ignorant, at least on this subject.

  • lietenantdan

    Archie Slavetrader

    “The lighting is presently a holiday lighting, not a Christmas lighting. If Mt. Sinai changes the lighting to a Christmas lighting, they should be required to also have a Hanukah lighting and a Kwanza lighting.”

    So let the people get involved and have a celebration celebrating Hanukah and a Kwanza kighting, there is nothing wrong with that but a Christmas tree is about Christmas and the birth of Jesus Christ.

  • dev
  • Ramon

    If we’re gonna get this stupid about it, we can’t really call it a Holiday Tree either, because the origin of a Holiday were days set aside for special religious observations (“holy-day = holi-day”) and we wouldn’t want to offend Atheists.

    So come on everyone, let’s all crowd around the Nothing Tree. See how beautiful it shines. So how inoffensively its Nothing Lights flicker.

  • Ramon

    It doesn’t matter what the origin was hundreds of years ago. A Christmas tree is about Christmas. It’s not like after the 15th century there was a long-standing, simultaneous tradition among Pagans or Wiccans that was in anyway popularly observed in their culture. It had a non-Christian origin (like the actual date of Christmas), got adopted by Christians hundreds of years ago, and now it’s a Christian tradition.

    It’s like saying Independence Day Fireworks shows aren’t really an American tradition, since fireworks originated in China. It’s absurd.

    On that note, you could say that *okay*, let’s pretend that decorating a tree with lights and ornaments and a star on top was sustained throughout history as some generic practice observed by many different cultures (which is BS, but fine, let’s assume that). You could then say that trees decorated in specific observation of Christmas be called “Christmas Trees” and all trees decorated in observation of other traditions be called whatever they want to call it. In this way, Christmas Trees would be a subset of Holiday trees, and there can be other Holiday trees as well. Wiccans could decorate their tree and called their “Wicca Tree” (which, by the way, Wiccans traditionally burn a log, they don’t erect a tree with electric lights, but whatever, I’m not opposed to a Wicca Tree).

    And then towns would, in recognition of the Christian “culture”, erect a tree in secular observation of a holiday celebrated by a large population of its town. Similarly, towns also secularly celebrate Diwali, Yom Kippur, Ramadan, etc. whenever a large percentage of their population observes it.

    By this definition, it would still be called a freakin’ Christmas tree.

    It’s not even about religion. It’s the opposite. Christmas has become secularized and indoctrinated by American culture. It’s okay to say Merry Christmas, people. We’ve reached that point. Similarly, you can wish people happy St. Patrick’s day if you’re not Irish or Catholic. Or Happy Easter. or Happy Halloween.

  • DanTe

    I’m an Atheist and I find this hilarious. It’s a CHRISTMAS TREE, not a Hanuka Tree, not a Kwanza Tree, and definitely not an ALLAHLALALALALA BOOM! Tree.

    Too many da mned PC (pusillanimous c\/nts) in this country.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      it’s a christmas ANS a yule tree, it covers 2 religions. that is all i am trying to get across. that and that no one is stealing anyone’s religious holiday by saying happy holidays.

  • Samantha Raven Rominski

    seriously people, if you think your holiday is being “stolen” from you because of stupid meaningless words that do not take your holiday away from you but instead encompass all of them, perhaps it is YOU who you should look at. is your faith in your religion that shaken and weak? are words really more important that your faith and your belief? you should take a step back and ask yourself these questions, because only someone who is not strong in their faith would feel threatened by words. god is not in words. he/she is in your heart and your good will by knowing happy holidays does not steal that faith or make it less. you don’t need to shove who you worship out there in everyone’s faces to be strong in your faith. and if you do, perhaps your should reaffirm what your belief is.

  • Big Fish

    This was never an issue 10+yrs ago. It was called a Christmas tree. Americans should take a good look at who the antagonists are. Hint: the same group that have been nefarious antagonists over the past 2000yrs.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      it was never an issue because the christians would ignore and disrespect the views of others. owe, over the past 2000 years they also burned others at the steak too for not agreeing. so, tell me, what are you suggesting?? are you really that insulted to include everyone?? does it really have to always be about you? because i know if i am unsure of someone’s religious preference, and i accidentally with them the wrong one, who are the ones that get all tied up in their panties about it?? hint hint… seriously, it’s a polite way of saying, i don’t know what you worship so i will say happy holidays. if you answer with merry chirstmas, i will answer with the same because i now know your preference. but i am NOT going to ask every person who or what they worship or don’t worship. that is inane. can you understand NOW???

  • MikeS

    Ladies and Gentlemen, a couple of points:
    1. There is no such thing as “separation of church and state.” There is an establishment clause. All would be well to read the US Constitution, which says (I quote) “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
    2. The “holiday” is Christmas (just look at Dec. 25th on your US Calendar). Christmas is a US flag holiday and has been since it was signed into law during the administration of President Ulysses S. Grant.
    3. So, let’s live by our Constitution, which allows the free celebration of Christmas (a US Holiday), Channukah, and any other other (be it of religious, secular, or combined origin).
    There is room for all sides on this issue, if we employ just a little consideration and common sense!

    • MA

      Well said, Mike S.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      i don’t think anyone is denying that christmas is december 25th. because it is. i think they are just saying there is nothing wrong, or threatening, about the words happy holidays, which encompass all the holidays celebrated within december. it’s considerate and polite. :)

      • Ramon

        I don’t have a problem with people saying Happy Holidays. I have a problem with people having a problem with people saying Merry Christmas.

        I don’t have a problem with Wiccans having pagan traditions in December. I *do* have a problem with people having problems with people having Christmas traditions in December.

        And finally, I don’t have a problem with Yule logs or with Hannakuh. I *do* have a problem with people pretending the a tree with strings of lights and garland and an angel or star on top, typically perched above presents, and intended to be in observation of the Christmas holiday by like 100% of the people who put up such a tree, is representing any possible thing other than a “Christmas” tree.

        To pretend that there is even a minuscule percentage of the population that puts up a tree, decorates it with lights and ornaments, and does so in observation of anything “not” Christmas, and that it should be called a “Holiday” tree to represent that population’s own intention of tree decorating is just really stupid.

        I would also find it stupid if someone insisted we call the 9-candled, lit one-night-at-a-time-on-days-coinciding with Channakuh a “Holiday Menorah” to observe the fact that there may be some significant group of people who do that to represent their non-Channakuh tradition.

        See also any tradition in any culture that ever existed.

  • Richard Rabinowitz

    Well, it’s commonly known as a Christmas tree because most of the practictioners of this custom are Christians celebrating Christmas. The “tannenbaum” custom among Christians dates back a few hundred years and may be older among European pagans (in the form of Yule trees/ logs). So maybe it should be called a Christmas tree – and privatized, as government in America shouldn’t be meddling in religious affairs.

  • Jack B

    What’s funny is they call it a Holiday Tree lighting but they also have a Menorah Lighting in the same park. Why not a Holiday Candle lighting? I am not offended with a Menorah Lighting nor with a Christmas Tree Lighting. There is no reason to blur individual holiday traditions.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      because, the menorah is only jewish. the tree was pagan first and then shared by the christians. so in order to recognize BOTH faiths who use that symbol, it is only polite to call it a HOLIDAY tree, and not just a christmas tree. this way it recognizes the origins of who used it first.

      • Richard Rabinowitz

        we could call it a Yule/Christmas tree or a Winter Solstice/ Christmas tree, but admittedly “Holiday” is shorter.

        maybe we should add a Diwali symbol or something, too.

      • val

        Are there really pagans around these days? Look, I’m Jewish and I think this is such bull. It’s a Christmas tree! It should be called a Christmas tree lighting, but then they can have a “holiday” celebration if that is what they want. There is no need to blur traditions for the sake of “inclusion”.

  • RickM

    Thank you CBS for letting us know where you stand by telling me that the comment I wrote several minutes ago in favor of Christmas was a duplicate.

  • Rick

    Is this a site for all comments or just those of Rodin and Ignorante? The question of calling it a Christmas Tree, Christmas and not Xmas, etc. could be solved quickly if all we Christians stayed away from any ceremony or especailly any retailer that did not use the word Christmas. It’s that simple. You can be sure that our Jewish brothers and sisters would do likewise if Chanukah were changed to Xuhkah…For we Christians, Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, we don’t expect non Christians to believe or to celebrate or to accept it, but I believe we should all respect each others beliefs and so it should be a Christmas Tree, a Christmas sale, a Christmas display, etc. Think about it my Christian brethern, just stop patronizing any establishment or display that does not include the word Christmas.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      does that mean only christians get to participate in the sale? do you now see how that sounds? and it is NOT a christmas tree. it is a pagan symbol. please, once again i will ask this…someone TELL ME what a decorated tree has to do with the birth of christ?? i believe a MANGER has to do with the birth of christ, correct?? similar to what do eggs and a rabbit have to do with christ’s raising from the dead during easter? because i can give you that answer too. can a christian? our holidays were shared in order to convert all the people to the christian faith, along with more violent means. which means, today, we now share it. which i am fine with, but am i so wrong for wanting to be recognized? to you it is a christmas tree. to me it is a yule tree. to US it is a holiday tree. can someone please understand this??

      • Richard Rabinowitz

        Ask Martin Luther – he started the whole decorated tree thingy among Christians by decorating his “tannenbaum”. He may have been tired of Catholic pomp but was not above inventing his own pomp.

        • Richard Rabinowitz

          turns out he might not have done that – but Christmas trees were already in use by Germans as early as 1605, and perhaps earlier than that.

  • stormin'Norman

    It is the holiday season at this time of the year. However, in my family we celebrate Christmas in memory of Christ’s birth. God gave man the gift of free will. In our family we will use it to honor another gift that He gave, His Son.

    • Rodin

      “For US Christians”!

      See, Ignorante and I go way back in these debates. It’s our right. If you wish to join that debate, you’re welcome. If not, go play with yourself.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      and you have every right to do that! :) but i have every right to hear the stores and town include my beliefs as well as yours. i want to share. why is sharing a bad thing to you? isn’t it christianly to share?? and sharing means including mine in “happy holidays”. as well as atheists’ beliefs. or would you prefer all stores and towns to say, happy christmas, kwanza, hannakuh, yule, holiday sale?? isn’t it more catchy to just say “happy holiday sale”?

  • IgnoranteElephante

    I refrained from commenting in order to avoid the hassle, but enough is enough. Rodin, that you are able to read through a multitude of material and spit back the information on a news site in no way demonstrates your intelligence. In this day in age, with the volume of information available at the ready, your ability to cut and paste impresses no one. Quite the contrary, it is your lack of comprehension of the very information that you cite that is truly puzzling.

    No one denies Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Christ (although some would like to eradicate or homogenize it). The date of the celebration of Christmas is what has been in dispute for years. However, long before the Germans celebrated Yule in the 700s, Christian scholars theorized that Christ’s Birth, and therefore Christmas, as being in December. This theory surfaced in the third of fourth century and is based upon Jesus’ conception in the Hebrew month of Nissan, the first month of the Hebrew year. It has long been theorized that Jesus was symbolically and purposely crucified during the same time of year as his conception. Easter is the Christian holiday celebrating Christ’s resurrection, just days after his death. If one takes the human gestation period of nine months and applies it to late March, on comes up with late December and, hence, December 25 as Christmas. Late March often coincides with Nissan. Such makes sense as it is widely accepted that the Last Supper was a Passover Seder.

    Could this dating all be erroneous? It could, but one thing is indisputable. Christmas in December was celebrated long before any Germanic feast of Yule and is separate and distinct from the solstice. Saturnalia, a feast conceived sometime after the birth of Christ, became a weeklong celebration from December 17 through 23. It ended before Christmas and was often celebrated in conjunction with it. As for the Christmas tree, it has been used to celebrate Christmas in what is today Estonia and Latvia since the 1500s, separate from Yule. In fact, the literature that you have provided states that the Christmas tree was “absorbed into, and equated with, Christmas,” simply stating that one custom’s tradition melded with another.

    What of the notion that we should keep our faiths to ourselves? Would you feel comfortable if the government told Puerto Rican to stop displaying their Puerto Rican flags? Would anyone attempt to tell Jews to stop wearing Yarmulkes and putting prayer scrolls in their doorways? Of course not.

    This is a Christian country. All that the constitution requires is that there be no official state religion and that each be entitled to celebrate his own religion. Thus, I will proudly and openly celebrate Christmas as the birth of my Lord savior. I will call it as such. Shall you wish to object to that, you may, but remember that I am in the large majority.

    • Samantha Raven Rominski

      this is NOT a christian country. the founding fathers were THEISTS. with all your facts one would think you would know that. honestly i am so SICK TO DEATH of christians crying “oh no they are taking away our religious holiday!!” NO THEY ARE NOT! they are INCLUDING EVERYONE by saying HAPPY HOLIDAYS!! when people started saying that i was overjoyed knowing that my faith was FINALLY be recognized as well, and included in all the others, by exclaiming happy holidays. if someone wanted to take christmas away they would NOT say happy holidays, they would say ONLY happy hannukah, or happy kwanza, or happy yule. And your argument of christmas being the FIRST celebration at that time is INVALID. pagans celebrated the WINTER SOLSTICE for centuries before christ was even discovered. look on your calendar, i’m sure you will find it marked on there. you want to know why?? they were celebrating the during the longest night of the year to welcome back the SUN, because way back when december 21 was the middle of a long hard winter where it was very cold and many people died, food was becoming scarce and the world was dark. after the solstice the days gradually became longer again, leaving more light to hunt and find food. they also knew it meant the return of GREEN and LIFE. THAT is where your TREE comes from. why else would there be a tree decorated?? you really think they had trees like that in the middle of a desert where jesus was born?? holy and pines remained green all winter long when everything else withered and died or became bare as skeletons. THEY ARE PAGAN SYMBOLS! i am very sorry to break that news to you. now, i am pagan, but i do not mind my symbols being shared and used for different meanings, in your case, the meaning would be where santa would leave presents because i fail to find a connection between the tree and jesus. for me the tree represents life and how there is still hope of growth to return after the long winter, and the lights represent the pushing away of the darkness until the days become longer once more. really if you are so into facts than you should know that jesus was VOTED into being a “god”, before that he was a very beloved, well known, and wise prophet who had very good teachings. LOOK IT UP! with that i will say, happy yule, happy solstice, merry christmas, happy kwanza, happy hannukah….or, i could just say, happy holidays, and include everyone. :)

      • Rodin

        Couldn’t have said it better myself, Sam!

        “The United States is not a Christian nation any more than it is a Jewish or a Mohammedan nation.”
        ~ JOHN ADAMS
        Second President of the United States

        • Samantha Raven Rominski

          Thank you, Rodin. I fail to understand why EVERYONE is in such a stink when people just want to include EVERYONE! saying Happy Holidays makes me happy, because people are happy when they are recognized. Perhaps that is why the christians are making such a stink, because they think they are no longer being recognized? No, you ARE! But now we ALL are. it’s ok. Keep saying merry christmas to me, it will not offend me. I will smile and return the sentiment with “happy yule” as well as a thank you for a blessing from your god. because in all, they are all the same anyway. people are individuals, and we all have different ways of finding our god and our truth. we should not be denied our individualism. so stop belly aching. know that you are included too, and show good spirit and christian manners by loving your neighbor and being happy that THEY are now included as well. :) no one is being left out. we are now all being part of the same family. to say this country is a christian one goes against everything this country stands for and everything the founding fathers wanted to create. and it shows your intolerance. it’s not an any religion country. it is a country of people joined in independence and freedom. and a diversity of minds and cultures AND religions. and we all like to be recognized. and we are ALL one united in that diversity.

        • MA

          “The United States is not a Christian nation any more than it is a Jewish or a Mohammedan nation.” is NOT a quotation of John Adams. This quotation taken from the Treaty of Tripoli is sometimes mis-attributed to John Adams, who signed the Treaty of Tripoli into law. A portion is also sometimes mis-attributed to George Washington, and also misquoted as “This nation of ours was not founded on Christian principles.” Get your facts straight Rodin. You loose all credibility when you make errors like this one!!!

          • Rodin

            From the Treaty of Tripoli signed by John Adams in 1797.

            Your statement, BTW, is plagiarized from Wikipedia. Credit where it’s due, smart @rse.

      • Boris

        The Founding Fathers were Deists, not Theists. They believed in God, and were in general Christians deeply influenced by the Enlightment. You are correct in stating that the US is not a “Christian” country. Rather, it is a secular representative republic populated mainly by Christians. The rest of the points you made are generally incomprehensible. It is perfectly reasonable to insist that a Chritmas celebration, even one cultural in nature, be reffered to as such. They are lighting a Christmas tree, not a holiday tree. Anything else is simply idiotic.

        • Samantha Raven Rominski

          i stand corrected with the deists as opposed to the theists. yes i knew they believed in A god. i do too. several in fact. i am NOT godless. i just don’t follow chirst, who was a man. much as the jewish believe he was only a man and not a god. i don’t understand your other point of view. why is what i say incomprehensible?? they are lighting a pagan symbol that christians incorporated intot heir birth of christ decorations. if they were celebrating ONLY christmas, wouldn’t it make more sense to put up a giant manger instead?? after all, that is the christian symbol and reason for christmas. not to light a tree that did not even grow in the land christ was born in. ask a true christian. they will tell you lighting a tree is something they do not do because it has nothing to do with christ’s birth and was only incorporated much later as Rodin earlier stated.

          • Boris

            Because yor comments are idiotic. The Menorah is a Jewish symbol because jews adopted it as a symbol. Jews didn’t invest the candelbra, or oil lamps with multiple burn pots. By your “logic” the Menorah would not be a Jewish symbol, and a menorah lighting would have to be called a “Lighting Ceremony” or something equally stupid. You obviously have a problem with Christians. get over it your bigotry/hangups. It’s a Christmas tree, and should be called a Christmas tree. If you know someone celebrates Christmas, say “Merry Christmas” if you want to be polite. Otherwise, just shut up.

            • Rodin

              Why the insult, @rsehole? Like to rub it in? Get your jollies? She’s more of a ‘man’ than you are. The only ‘idiot’ is you. SHAME! Can’t be civil? Keep your worthless comments to yourself.

      • NurseDee

        I don’t want everyone included in my holiday. I don’t want to say Happy Holidays. I want to say Merry Christmas to my fellow christians. I will say Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish friends, and Happy Kwanza to my friends that celebrate that holiday. Stop bundling everything into one – it doesn’t fit.

        • Samantha Raven Rominski

          will you say happy yule to your pagan friends? and we are not talking about what you will personally say, we are saying how the town addresses the entire populace of said town. i am not a christian. therefore i would like to hear happy holidays as opposed to merry christmas, which tells me they are only concerned with the christians. do you understand? can you? or is it only about what YOU want?

  • ZJ

    OK, well I love the holiday season because of the diversity. Christmas should NOT be taken away and replaced with “holiday.” I, myself, don’t celebrate Christmas but I still love the holiday. I love the lights, warmth of the season, messages it sends (peace, family), etc. Whether or not one celebrates Christmas, people should spread the word about world peace. It annoys me that non-Christians want to take the word “Christmas” away. I am a non-Christian, but I love the Christmas season! Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanzaa, and of course, Happy New Year!

  • SFede

    Sick of the political correctness nonsense…. it’s CHRISTMAS!!! Holiday…what holiday are we celebrating at this time of year! It’s CHRISTMAS!!!

    • Ellen

      SFede, agree 100 per cent, and am with you on this all the way. Great post.

  • Rodin

    Gotta walk the Pups. Later.

    Eat your heart out, DMC!

    • IgnoranteElephante

      Your article contributes nothing to the debate. I have a google button too, but I actually am able to understand that which I read.

      • Rodin

        And you do. You’re the perfect foil for me. That’s why I always “light up like a Christmas tree” when you show up.

        I don’t need Google except perhaps to quickly verify data. I have my own source of materials I have researched for years. Please visit. You might learn a thing or two.

        • IgnoranteElephante

          Why don’t you try to read scholarly literature that is subject to peer review instead of cr@p that is passed off as history.

          • Rodin

            Ditto. Can you take your own advice?

            • IgnoranteElephante

              I have. I actually have read the Old Testament. I know the history of this country. What do you do? You sit here and rabble rouse based on some kid’s blog. You are a loser, and from your comment at 6:33 pm, a pedophile too.

              • Rodin

                If you had any brains, if you ‘comprehended’ anything at all, you’d find said “comment at 6:33 pm” uncharacteristic of me and suspect I didn’t post it. You’ve been around me long enough to know as much. It’s been deleted because I alerted CBS and the individual who posted it is notoriously in the habit of hijacking identities.

                Because, believe it or not, I enjoy our debates, I’m sorry to say you’re the kind of fool he’s after.

                For this article at least, don’t bother posting any more replies to me. I will not respond. Your insult is truly ignorant and in’comprehensible’.

              • Rodin

                I can’t fail to add that you show yourself to be the classic example of the arrogance of piety, the hypocrisy of the religious; judgmental, accusatory, inquisitorial, always willing to believe the worst of and demonize those who do not share your beliefs, biased and bigoted.

    • DMC

      I hope they bite you.

      • Rodin

        That’s very Christian of you.

        “Dogs are blameless, devoid of calculation, neither blessed nor cursed with human motives. They can’t really be held responsible for what they do. But we can.”
        ~ JON KATZ
        American journalist and author

  • Rodin

    Why don’t you? Then you can live and preach to and impose on your tribe of 1.

    • Rodin

      MISPLACED. Refers to DMC, November 30, 2011 at 11:38 am

    • IgnoranteElephante

      You’re wrong. You should google the amount of practicing Christians in this country. There are much more than one.

      • Rodin

        November 30, 2011 at 4:47 pm
        “Well, friend, unlike you, I actually comprehend that which I read.”

        Well, friend, try to ‘comprehend’ figures of speech.

        • IgnoranteElephante

          Figure of speech or false statement purportedly offered as fact?

          • Rodin

            Your pick.

  • kenmona

    There are people who want to delete the word “Christmas” from our language, and replace it with “Holiday.” Probably the same people who want to replace the terms BC (Before Christ) and AD (Anno Domini) with BCE (Before the Common Era) and CE (Common Era). Christmas is a secular as well as Christian holiday. I’m a nonbeliever, but I hope Christmas never gets deleted.

    • Rodin

      Yes we are and no you’re not.

    • ZJ

      I agree with you. I love the Christmas season even though I don’t celebrate the holiday. I love some of the modern meanings of Christmas, such as world peace and family. I hope Christmas never gets deleted either.

  • IgnoranteElephante


    Who do you think is responsible for the censoring of all things Christmas? Please state your opinion below.

    • Rodin

      I guess you had nothing to contribute yourself, as usual.

      • IgnoranteElephante

        Well, friend, unlike you, I actually comprehend that which I read. Had you been able to do so, you would see nothing that you say disproves a Christmas as a December holiday celebrating Christ. You are an intellectual peon in way over your had. You could google all you want, but you can’t use a search engine to put concepts together to understand. This is why computers have not replaced us entirely, and the world still needs humans

  • BarbieDee

    If they want to call it a “holiday” tree, can you tell me what other holiday besides Christmas uses a tree? Do they use a tree during Chanukah? Kwanzaa? It’s a Christmas tree. Have we become a nation with such thin skins that we are offended by the word of Christmas? We go through this every year. It’s a Christmas Tree. The End.

    • Rodin

      BarbieDoll –

      “If they want to call it a “holiday” tree, can you tell me what other holiday besides Christmas uses a tree?”

      Irrelevant and historically illiterate. Scroll down to Rodin, November 30, 2011 at 3:15 pm

  • Zuc

    A Christmas tree is exactly that. Christmas trees are symbol of Christmas. If its called a “holiday tree” then that means a menorah is now called a “holiday candle” and kwanza bush called “holiday bush”. This is absurd. Christmas tree for christmas menorah for hannukah and kwanza bush for kwanza.. not difficult people

    • Michael H.

      The “Christmas Tree” started out as a Pagan symbol. Why are you trying to deny the Pagans their religious symbols??

      • Jimmy

        can you prove that with a trusted historical source?

        • steve
        • Rodin

          In The Solstice Evergreen by Sheryl Ann Karas, Karas has done an admirable job researching the various ways that the evergreen has been used in various cultures over the centuries

          Karas has amply demonstrated that evergreens have been a symbol of rebirth from ancient times. Bringing greenery into one’s home, often at the time of the winter solstice, symbolized life in the midst of death in many cultures. The Romans decked their homes with evergreens and other greenery during the Kalends of January. Living trees were also brought into homes during the old German feast of Yule, a winter festival that was initially celebrated by the historical Germanic people as a pagan religious festival, though it was later absorbed into, and equated with, the Christian festival of Christmas. The festival was originally celebrated from late December to early January on a date determined by the lunar Germanic calendar. The festival was placed on December 25 when the Christian calendar (Julian calendar) was adopted. Scholars have connected the celebration to the Wild Hunt. The Yule tree was planted in a tub and brought into the home.

          The earliest record of an evergreen tree being used and decorated (but without lights) for Christmas is 1521 in the German region of Alsace. rom the mid-seventeenth century on the Christmas tree slowly grew in popularity and use. However, it was not until the beginning of the 19th century that the use of the Christmas tree grew into the general German custom that it is today. Also at this time it spread to the Slavic people of eastern Europe. The Christmas tree was probably first used in America about 1700 when the first wave of German immigration settled in western Pennsylvania.

          • don

            I dont think you get it, The meeting is not about the history of the christmas tree

            • Rodin

              Hey, Don, I don’t think you get the flow of these things. Are you new at this? Follow the little curved arrows on the left. They tell you what comment a response is to. In this case, my response is to Jimmy;s, can you prove that with a trusted historical source? November 30, 2011 at 1:10 pm response to Michael H.’s The “Christmas Tree” started out as a Pagan symbol. Why are you trying to deny the Pagans their religious symbols??, in response to Zuc’s A Christmas tree is exactly that. Christmas trees are symbol of Christmas.

              Get with it!

              Now, I really do have to walk the kids.

              • don

                Hey Rodin,

                Get with it! Have you ever heard of thread drift, its the way the Internet work. I was trying to get the discussion back on topic. I never denied the Pagans their Holiday, matter of fact if you showed up to the meeting last night, I would be happy to support a little stonehedge out there for you to worship the sun or whatever your choice of beliefs are. If you are so adamant of protecting the Pagans rights what about the Christians rights?

                and who are you kidding you are addicted to this debate!.

                • Rodin

                  I LOVE IT! It’s how I get my jollies, baiting and riling up the superstitious, inane and ignorant. Read the rants.

            • MA

              After reading all that you have written, I would like to suggest that you get a J-O-B. You have too much time on your hands. (You also need to check your facts better – you and Samantha Raven Rominski sling a whole lot of fabrications out that are misleading at best.)

              • Rodin

                Don’t need a “J-O-B.” Paid my dues long ago after 40 years. It’s my time to play on fools like you. Get YOURS straight. Mine are clear.

                Disconnecting. Over and out. G’nite.

          • Bible Knowledge

            even earlier than 1521…how about centuries before the birth of Christ?
            Using a tree with decorations is written about in the Bible (Jeremiah 10:3,4)
            “For the customs of the people are vain; for one cuttth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.”
            Now the LORD was telling Jeremiah about the heathen and how they worshipped…so be glad that Christ paid for the sins for those that believe

            • Rodin

              Yet the Babble and the Christ are fantasies like Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and Mother Goose.

  • NurseDee

    Stop trying to make Christmas something that it isn’t. It IS CHRISTMAS always has been and always should be.

    • Rodin

      Stop trying to make [the Solstice] something that it isn’t. It IS C{THE SOLSTICE] always has been and always should be.

      • IgnoranteElephante

        You are not seriously denying the birth of Christ. It is separately recounted in literature the world over, from Judaism to Islam or did you not think out your solstice crap before typing?

        • Rodin

          The Abrahamic religions are nothing but spinoffs of each other. No wonder!

          And YES, I do deny the existence of a historical Christ with his disappearing act and all.

          SHOW ME.

          And PLEASE don’t go off on the Gospels and Josephus. Too late to validate.

          Did yo hear the Russian Orthodox patriarchs are now showing off the knitted camel hair belt of the Virgin Mary to ward off abortion and reverse the declining birth rate in Russia?

          “What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof.” ~ CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS

  • don

    Regardless of the overall past history of the Christmas tree is not the point. The point of the matter is that the word Christmas is being replaced with “Holiday” because some non christians might be offeneded, while other holidays are still represented at face value. The American Public is getting tired Political Correctness and these people are fighting for the Preservation of CHRISTmas as the way Americans originally celebrated it.

    • Rodin

      As if Americans invented Christmas! Pfft….

      • don

        No they didnt, But Americans are known for tolerance. Are you suggesting we should call the Menorah a “Holiday Candle” so we can homogenize the holiday with Kwanzaa as well? If you do not want to celebrate Christmas than stay home or better yet go to work in protest of recognizing the Holiday. Just to let you know not a single person voted last night to call it a Holiday tree, so shouldn’t they respect the community and call it what the community wants it to be called!

        • mudshark

          Americans are known for tolerance? I find that point a bit arguable. I guess it depends on which label is placed upon your group.

          • don

            As Humans ,groups will always be labeled. But not to long ago in History there was no freedom of speech, or religion, or to petition the government, or civil rights, etc…The United States developed a country where these are your constitutional rights! In todays world many of these things still do not exist in other countries

            • Rodin


              The Dutch of the Golden Age(XVII c.)who gave us oil paint, the art gallery, genre painting and still life, letter writing, the postal service, international trade, the stock market, the tulip and gin, also embraced religious tolerance, “freedom of religion” … and FROM it. While the they were free to believe or not in whatever got them through the night, it was to be done so privately. Banned were all outward manifestations and religious symbols, ergo: no proselytizing, no problem.

              The result was one of the greatest cultural watersheds in history: a time of science and commerce, exploration, philosophy, art, literature, music that became a refuge for ALL at a moment ripe with religious persecution. Baruch Spinoza, the Portuguese Jewish philosopher, flourished there while working placidly as a lens grinder; Isaac Newton published his treatises there. Rembrandt, Van Dyck and Vermeer came out of that time free from religious obstruction and intolerance.

              • don

                Rodin we can debate for weeks on history!!! Please respond to my 11:37 am comment

                • Rodin

                  Please note that my response is to your November 30, 2011 at 1:19 pm comment.

                  Mudshark took care of November 30, 2011 at 11:37 am. I have nothing to add.

              • IgnoranteElephante

                How many times have I seen your rants about the wonders that the dutch brought us or Baruch Spinoza or Saturnalia? Come up with something new. Oh wait, I’m sorry. Your small brain can’t learn anything new. Gee, that does suck.

                • Rodin

                  Why don’t you try something other than dogma? Like thought.

            • IgnoranteElephante

              All my comments are support by thought, not just some incendiary cr@p I found on someone’s blog. Remember how wrong you have been in the past, with the cop case, whith the Jewish kid? When will you learn?

  • Virginia

    Is there really a Santa Claus?

    • Rodin

      Yes, Virginia, and an Easter Bunny, a Great Pumpkin, a Tooth Fairy and Mother Goose.

      “I don’t believe in God because I don’t believe in Mother Goose.” ~ CLARENCE DARROW

  • Carolyn Murtaugh

    It seems more inclusive to recognize there are several winter celebrations and label their symbols accordingly: CHRISTMAS tree, HANUKKAH menora, KWANZZA kinara, etc. We should celebrate people’s different traditions – not try to homogenize them.

    • Elaine

      Well said!

    • Love of Christmas


      • Rodin

        It is always religion that excludes.

    • Rodin

      There’s a chasm between “recognition” and “imposition”.

  • Sara

    Christmas is a wonderful holiday. The Lighting should stay as a Christmas Lighting just as Chanukah or any other holiday shouldn’t lose “Their” meaning of their holiday. I would be upset if they changed a Chanukah lighting to a “Holiday” Lighting…..Christmas should stay as Christmas, that’s what the lighting is about – It’s not a General Holiday Lighting, it has meaning for those who celebrate that holiday.

    • Rodin

      I say do what you want … AT HOME … and with those like-minded and stop pushing your myths on and purveying your fantasies (and fears) to others.

      “The lighting,” whether of trees or menorahs, is about the return of the light at the Winter Solstice and NOTHING ELSE.

      Celebrate the LIGHT of REASON!

      • Helen Morgenstern

        The menorah lighting has a specific meaning and nothing to do with the winter solstice.

        • Rodin

          It is derivative and has everything to do with the practices surrounding the celebration of the Solstice, which predate Judaism by millenia.

    • Archie Slavetrader

      The lighting is presently a holiday lighting, not a Christmas lighting. If Mt. Sinai changes the lighting to a Christmas lighting, they should be required to also have a Hanukah lighting and a Kwanza lighting.

  • lieutenantdan

    Christmas is a Christian holiday and it should remain that way and this country was founded by Christians.
    Good luck on trying to purchase a manger set these days. I finally found one at Home Depot and the package was dusty as if it had been in the stock room for over a decade. I speculate that the current trend is that extremist liberals, gay right activists and feminist who are angry at the Catholic religion would like to abolish the Christian holiday for selfish reasons.
    I have noticed that the Martha Stewart company are making Christmas lights
    in the colors of the Gay Flag. I did not realize this at first and I started to wondered what purple, pink, orange, and yellow colored lights have to do with Christmas. Answer is nothing. I do not want to appear angry because I am not but I do not like to be played for a fool.
    God Bless and a Merry Christmas to all.

    • Rodin

      Inform yourself!

      This season, celebrate Reason and keep your faith out of my face,

      Good without gØds!

      • Rodin

        PS –

        “I started to wondered what purple, pink, orange, and yellow colored lights have to do with Christmas. Answer is…”

        ‘Christmas’ is the Christian propaganda version of the celebration of the return of the Sun, the “light of the world,” at the Winter Solstice (when days start getting longer again). It outdates Xmas by millions of years.

      • Gianna

        And you keep your disparaging comments about Christians out of MY face! I will practice my faith and its holy days however and wherever I want to – one of the reasons I am AMERICAN! I have the freedom to do exactly that! I don’t have to hide my faith in shame because of a few sourpusses like you who want to impose their will on others simply because they don’t like something. Your selfish “me-me-me” attitude comes through loud and clear based on all your comments.

        Spend the holidays home alone, inside and away from the good cheer and spirit of giving that the rest of us will be celebrating wholeheartedly!

        • Rodin

          Typical. I haven’t made “any disparaging comments about Christians”, only stated historical fact.

          “People seem to be offended by facts, or what used to be called truth.” – Francis Bacon

          You may indeed practice whatever whenever. What you may not do is impose your practices on others. THAT is freedom of religion… and FROM it, if I wish.

          The only “me-me-me” attitude that comes through here is yours and that of all who would force feed their myths and fantasies on others.

          • Gianna

            You are the very one insisting to impose – deny it all you want, enough people here see you for the little troll you are. Telling me to stay home and practice alone? I think not – you don’t like it, you stay home.

            And by referring to Christians as propagandizing and stealing and whatever else you’ve said – those comments most certainly are disparaging. You sure like to dish it out, don’t you? When someone calls you on it, you whine like the infantile troll you are.

            And by the way – MERRY CHRISTMAS!

            Now I’m through wasting my time on the worthless hater that you are

            • Rodin

              “People seem to be offended by facts, or what used to be called truth.” – Francis Bacon

              You’re a prime example.

              • Gianna

                Actually, what I’m an example of is someone who is offended by someone else who would take facts and twist them into insults. It’s common knowledge that throughout history nearly every culture has adopted traditions, customs and rituals of other cultures, sometimes willingly, sometimes not. But somehow, you say it’s only a crime when the Christians do that. That just reveals your true narrow-minded view.

                • Rodin

                  DID I say ‘crime’? “Imposition.”

                  We ARE talking Christmas and Christians here, are we not?

                  “Sharia” is “sharia,” imposed religious regulation, call it what you may — whether Christian, Muslim or Jew — by one group (culture) on another, not “adopted”.

                  I reject ALL religious dogma and proselytizing on principle. As you can see here, religion is caustic, divisive, deluded, exclusive, biased, inflexible, controlling, anti-reason.

                  A somewhat narrow reading, Gianna? Say…, ‘selective’?

                  “The only world that won’t disappoint me is the one I make up.” ~ FRANCIS BACON

      • Christmas Lover

        Jesus is the Reason for the Season!

        • Rodin

          Jesus who?

    • Michael H.

      You’re a bad lieutenant, mithter!

      • Rodin

        Hi, Michael H. Happy Perihelion!

  • Norman Briskman

    Christmas is CHRISTMAS. Leave it be.

    • Rodin

      To Christians. An imposition of religious dogma to the rest.

      Keep your faith out of my face!

      • littlestar

        Keep your sexual preferance out of my face so I don’t feel like spitting. Luv ya !

  • DOnald

    Christmas has nothing to do with Christ….research it you’ll find out.

    If it has to do with Christ….why is there a Santa Claus? What’s he got to do with Christ? lol

  • Emerelda

    This is so stupid.
    Christmas is the very holiday they are talking about anyway – its the
    word Christmas they want to avoid.
    Its like changing the word Easter to Spring Holiday.
    What is going on ?

    • Rodin

      It was the Christians who hijacked the Pagan holidays of the Solstice and Saturnalia and turned them into Christmas. Some of us ARE tired of the relentless yearly seasonal Christ assault.

      Learn something: “The grinch who stole the story of Christmas”

      • DMC

        Rodin, why don’t you go and live on an island by yourself – you will not have to worry about anyone imposing on you ever again.

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