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It’s not just Christmas bureaucrats want to cancel, they are taking aim at Hanukkah, other holidays


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It’s not just Christmas bureaucrats want to cancel, they are taking aim at Hanukkah, other holidays

Washington state bureaucrats expect workers to give up cross, menorah, crescent and religious freedom

Published December 4, 2022 7:00am EST

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The Grinch’s appetite to devour Christmas remains so unsatiated, he is now turning his joy-sucking efforts toward Hanukkah and other faiths’ holiday observances.  

King County, Washington, where Seattle sits, is banning its employees from displaying any symbols of Christmas or Hanukkah when working from home, according to a recent article. The King County policy bans employees from including holiday decorations such as nativity scenes, crosses and menorahs, and even extends the ban to the dharma wheel, crescent and star, aum, khanda, and a nine-pointed star. 

The hammer and sickle, however, is apparently still allowed.

This ban extends to "virtual" workspaces, which, of course, include what is visible when one logs on to a Zoom from home. 

The bureaucratic drive to eradicate all individualism and creativity and create a bland dystopian landscape glorifying secularism seems to have no limits. What was once cast as an effort to protect the feelings of those of minority faiths now reveals its true self – acknowledgment of anything beyond the temporal is forbidden. It was never about Christmas, as such. The State, personified as the faceless bureaucrat who wrote this bizarre policy, dislikes any challenge to its ultimate power and authority, especially any acknowledgment that there is some level of spiritual authority that transcends the State itself. 

This is exactly why federal law passed by Congress and signed by the president in 1964, known as the Civil Rights Act, forbid the kind of workplace discrimination enacted by King County. Under the Civil Rights Act, an employer such as King County must accommodate the religious practices of its employees unless doing so causes an undue hardship on the employer. If an employee has a sincerely held religious belief to celebrate a holiday in their home workspace and requests his or her employer accommodate that religious practice, the employer must normally do so. Here, King County must accommodate its employees when they decorate their home offices with religious symbols and there is no discernible reason such an accommodation would cause King County any hardship.  

If any county employees in King County – or any government employee who feels their religious liberty rights are being violated – would like to seek a religious accommodation to display a religious item on the banned list, whatever their faith, they should seek legal counsel. We at First Liberty Institute have won numerous cases across the country restoring the religious liberty rights of Americans, including several who have faced similar Grinch-like attacks. 

While we hope leaders in King County come to their senses and reverse this illegal and ridiculous policy, it may require legal action to bring diversity to the bland world of King County. 

As recently as 2018, the state Supreme Court of Washington, also found that government employers cannot infringe on the free speech rights of its employees absent a "legitimate interest." In Sprague v. Spokane Valley Fire Department, the court upheld the right of a firefighter to include religious messages in emails despite using a government owned message system, recognizing that, "[i]t is well settled that public employees do not surrender their First Amendment rights to speak freely on matters of public concern merely because they are employed by a public." Further specifically finding that "[t]he ‘State may not discharge or otherwise discipline an employee on a basis that infringes upon that employee's constitutionally protected interest in freedom of speech.’" 

Of course, King County’s outrageous ban on home holiday decorations is ridiculous as a policy matter. The secular state has nothing to fear from the menorah or the dharma wheel, particularly if those displays are within the home of the employee and simply in the background of a Zoom call. But the ban is a serious infringement on the religious freedom of county employees.  

Source:    https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/its-not-just-christmas-bureaucrats-want-cancel-they-are-taking-aim-hanukkah-other-holidays

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Wow, the audacity! I fought, bled, and had many friends-brothers and sisters who have lost their lives fighting for the freedoms we hold dear in this country only to have a state county government think that they can infringe upon those rights. Wow, glad I do not live in the state of Washington.

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Good grief, the nerve of some people! Of course, I’m not surprised. The Lord Jesus went up to Jerusalem every winter to celebrate Hanukkah (although John calls it the Feast of the Dedication; cf. Jn. 10:22-23). There, Jesus used it as a means to reveal His work as the Good Shepherd and His glory and union with the Father (Jn. 10:1-21, 24-41). As a result, many among the crowds came to faith in Him (Jn. 10:42). No wonder secularists hate Hanukkah. It’s just another reminder of the Light of the World (Jn. 1:4-5, 7-9; 3:19-21; 8:12: 9:5; 11:9-10; 12:35-36, 46). He has made us lights to shine into the world, so we can share the love of God with our family, friends, neighbors, and enemies (Matt. 5:14-16; Lk. 16:8; cf. Jn. 12:36; Eph. 5:8; 1 Thess. 5:5). Being small beacons of God’s love—that’s the only sure fire way to defeat secularism.

Of course, even with other assorted holidays and their symbols (e.g., the dharma wheel, crescent and star, aum, khanda, and nine-pointed star noted in the article), I’m of the opinion that if some holidays (Christmas and Hanukkah) are under attack, none are safe. The saying “an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us” comes to mind. Of course, the irony of allowing the hammer and sickle isn’t lost on me.

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As we allow the things such as Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter and so many other days or events that bring color, hope and joy into our lives to be banned or closeted out of sight, we lose the very things that bring joy and happiness into our lives. When I go to work at a place of business I agree to certain terms, if those terms include a prohibition on displaying certain things, I must honor those rules. But those rules must never extend outside of the building I work from. My home is my place, it must never be governed by those who I work for. Should an employer feel they have the right to dictate what I have in my home, it would be time to part company and find another employer. It breaks my heart to see that so many of the things that have given us a sense of security and joy taken away by people who have a " better way" just because they want change. I was taught that your right to swing ends at the tip of my nose and too many of these so called know it all's are getting way too close for comfort. Please forgive my rant.

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20 minutes ago, Grandpa Gus said:

When I go to work at a place of business I agree to certain terms, if those terms include a prohibition on displaying certain things, I must honor those rules. But those rules must never extend outside of the building I work from. My home is my place, it must never be governed by those who I work for. Should an employer feel they have the right to dictate what I have in my home, it would be time to part company and find another employer. It breaks my heart to see that so many of the things that have given us a sense of security and joy taken away by people who have a " better way" just because they want change. I was taught that your right to swing ends at the tip of my nose and too many of these so called know it all's are getting way too close for comfort. Please forgive my rant.

Almost reminds you of the redcoats using civilian homes in the colonies . . .

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Sundbloom Santa, I had not thought of it like that, but I fear you are right.

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First question: How does any media make money? From informing the public, providing for the general benefit of their audience? Ha ha ha ha...Nope, they sell advertising.  Second question: How do you extract the biggest fees? Because your content is honest and accurate, reliable and clear? Nope, attracting any audience, the bigger the better, preferably folks with money to spend, everything else is beside the point. Helps a lot if you can lock them in to your channel or whatever and keep 'em coming back. Now, if you get them angry, keep them stirred up, and never give them anything but more infuriating and maddening stories eveytime they tune in, you will laugh all the way to the bank. ALL of the above is why I am absent from all social media, including Clausnet (this is my first post in over five years, and I am NOT returning). 

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Perhaps every employee should go out of their way to decorate their home office in direct contradiction to the recent mandate instructions. 

It would be interesting to see how the leaders of Kings County managed the collective defiance of all the  employees!   

They certainly require a reality check, why not focus the efforts on something meaningful and constructive by way of liberating and empowering people rather than attempting to dedicate their narrow minded views upon others who choose to celebrate their beliefs, values and religion,

People like this really do make my feet itch in readiness to deliver a jolly good kick in the derriere ! :( 

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6 minutes ago, Rob Thompson said:

Perhaps every employee should go out of their way to decorate their home office in direct contradiction to the recent mandate instructions. 

It would be interesting to see how the leaders of Kings County managed the collective defiance of all the  employees!   

They certainly require a reality check, why not focus the efforts on something meaningful and constructive by way of liberating and empowering people rather than attempting to dedicate their narrow minded views upon others who choose to celebrate their beliefs, values and religion,

You know, I was thinking the same thing. The best way to deal with a bunch of Grinches is to be the jolliest people around. For one thing, it’s actually constructive (it builds others up). For another thing, it can maybe be a way for folks to share their different ways of celebrating the holidays. One thing that makes Christmas and other midwinter celebrations so wonderful is the ability to share one another’s joy. Good food for thought!

7 minutes ago, Rob Thompson said:

People like this really do make my feet itch in readiness to deliver a jolly good kick in the derriere ! :( 

Or . . . we could always do that. 🤣

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20 minutes ago, Sundblom Santa said:

You know, I was thinking the same thing. The best way to deal with a bunch of Grinches is to be the jolliest people around. For one thing, it’s actually constructive (it builds others up). For another thing, it can maybe be a way for folks to share their different ways of celebrating the holidays. One thing that makes Christmas and other midwinter celebrations so wonderful is the ability to share one another’s joy. Good food for thought!

Or . . . we could always do that. 🤣

To be quite frank, and Im not called Frank, I believe the time for jolliness is way to subtle for those folk, the itchy foot approach will suffice, if nothing else I would take some pleasure in the un- itching of my foot! 

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