PILGRIM'S FIRST THANKSGIVING FEAST INVITED INDIANS AS FRIENDLY GESTURE Several years ago at Thanksgiving dinner, a California colleague related his fifth-grade daughter's version of the Pilgrims' first Thanksgiving Feast, as she had learned it in school: "The Pilgrims were thankful to the Indians for helping them."
My colleague -- not particularly religious -- was shocked at his child's misunderstanding of this important American tradition. He told her the Pilgrims were deeply religious people who came to America to observe their faith. They hosted that first Thanksgiving feast to thank God for His blessings in the new land. The Indians were invited as a gesture of friendship. I thought of that incident when, in 2004, that state education officials in Maryland issued an edict about Thanksgiving observances in the public schools: Teachers may allow students to be "thankful" to almost anyone (or anything), but not God.
My wife and I raised our family in Maryland and lived there 33 years. Our children attended Montgomery County public schools, which were always on the political and social "cutting edge". In the mid-1960s, county educators put "smoking rooms" in some high schools. Kids were going to smoke anyway, so let's keep them in school instead of driving them off campus. Today, both God and tobacco have lost favor in Maryland. Nothing from the Free State -- including proclamation of a Godless Thanksgiving -- surprises me.
Not to be too tough on Maryland, things are similar in other "blue" states, or even red ones. Maryland is merely ahead of other states. Try to recall when your kids last brought home anything from school about Thanksgiving, the Pilgrims, etc. Halloween is now the big holiday. It's meaningless, but much safer -- no risk "God" might be mentioned by an incautious child.
God has also been surgically removed from Christmas. In schools, the public square, the shopping mall -- Christmas is a raucous, gaudy, commercial hysteria that drives our economy for the last six weeks of every year. It no longer has the remotest connection to the Nativity, the Christ Child, Mary, Joseph, the Shepherds, the Wise Men, angels, etc.
As a child I gazed on the colored lights and heard Christmas music wafting into the night in our city's center square, circa 1950. The city was ablaze with light and good cheer. The Nativity scene was depicted in store windows. We sang carols in school. "Merry Christmas" rang out between teachers, students, customers, clerks, tradesmen, and bus-drivers. Even nonbelievers conveyed the good will of Christmas.
Today, the lights are still there. But the carols, the Nativity, and "Merry Christmas" are gone. In their place, we have silliness about Santa Claus, reindeer, snowmen and elves. Decorations feature grinches and cartoon characters. We say, "Happy Holidays." Schools now recognize Kwanza -- a holiday invented in 1965 so African-Americans could have an alternative to the "white man's Christmas".
Schools call this "diversity", but God's name is verboten. Whatever "The Holidays" are about, children's ears are considered too tender to hear that Christmas, a bedrock religious observance of our nation, means Jesus Christ -- Emmanuel, God with us, the Word made flesh. Our children may not hear that God's supreme gift to the world -- His own Son -- is the model for all Christmas gift-giving. Foreign visitors would have no idea Christmas meant anything more religious than hoping Rudolph's red nose would guide Santa's reindeer. Immediately after the September 11, 2001, attacks, "God Bless America" signs sprang up all over the country. Suddenly, God was "in" again. Americans turned back to God because they were afraid.
We hoped he had not forgotten us. Now, nine years later, God's name can't be spoken at school, and the Boys Scouts are everywhere kicked from pillar to post. Unless the "God must go" movement is stopped, it will sweep every last vestige of God from public America. Secularism will become the official state religion. Yes, the American Civil Liberties Union is driving this, but WE are the enablers. If we want God back in our culture, we shall have to care.
We The People must contend for Him -- writing our representatives, protesting court decisions, demonstrating, and exercising civil-disobedience, if necessary. Part of our problem is that we believe the courts are the supreme rulers. This is a false doctrine. The Constitution gives the courts only a few enumerated powers, dictating to other branches of government not among them, nor making new law nor defining religion.
When the Supreme Court ruled a few years ago that the Boy Scouts could exclude homosexuals, many municipalities refused to accept this ruling and acted as though it hadn't happened. They suffered no consequences, exposing a well-kept secret: The Supreme Court has no enforcement power beyond the people's will.
The lesson: Only new activism can restore balance. Non-response by the legislature to the Massachusetts Supreme Court would have prevented the current same-sex "marriage" fiasco. The legislature didn't have to obey the court's orders. The courts also do not govern the executive branch and its agencies. And they cannot interfere with "religion" unless we let them.
The buck stops with US. We can set things right, but we have to want to. In our Republic the people, not the courts, are supreme. Let's start acting that way!
As we get closer to Christmas, commemorating the birth of Christ, the above article speaks succinctly of one of the MAJOR problems facing this country today: the elimination of Judeo-Christian religion from our society. Over the past few decades, those who hate freedom in this country have been more and more successful in their determined efforts to expunge GOD from our culture. The manifest results of that success are everywhere around us. It is time, actually long past time for us to "put on the whole armor of God" and go forth to do battle to save this country from the Ungodly!