Every year, more and more municipal nativity scenes are removed from public property out of fear of a lawsuit claiming the Christian Christmas display violates the Constitution.
Already this season, nativity displays have been relocated or removed from Wadena, Minnesota and Baxter County, Arkansas. Residents of Belen, New Mexico are faced with the option of selling the land under their nativity scene in the hopes that the display can remain where it is and that they can avoid a lawsuit.
There is a serious injustice problem with this though, and the Court needs to take notice and come to a decisive solution against these frivolous lawsuits.
Ironically, the solution lies in what the nativity depicts.
A nativity display depicts the moment in time God became man. What if the roles were reversed and man became a god? If it is unconstitutional for the State to display a depiction of the moment in time God becomes a man, then it is likewise unconstitutional for the State to display a depiction of the moment in time man becomes a god. After all, these events are the antithesis of one another.
Therein lies the simple solution. The Court should recognize that the State already has a depiction of man becoming a god inside the U.S. Capitol rotunda.
Adorning the ceiling of the rotunda, in the most prominent spot available, is the painting, The Apotheosis of Washington. The title describes the painting well. “Apotheosis” is a Greek term meaning, “out of, or from god.” The Apotheosis of Washington, as its name implies, depicts the moment George Washington reaches god-like status.
The Apotheosis of Washington depicts Washington sitting on a throne in heaven, complete with a scepter and a purple robe, emblems fit for a divine king. Yet, for some reason, this divine king is allowed to stay inside the nation’s glorious Capitol building, while the baby divine king is declared unconstitutional, even outside on the lawn of a small-town capitol or courthouse. Not much has changed in 2,000 years, has it?
The Court should also note that the Apotheosis display contains no secular displays such as Santa Clause, candy canes, reindeer, snowmen, or toy soldiers. Instead, it is surrounded by the anti-Christian deities of the Roman Mysteries, including Ceres, Vulcan, Mercury, Neptune, and Minerva. The Apotheosis of Washington clearly fails the “three-reindeer rule.”
Since the Apotheosis was commissioned by Congress in 1863 for $40,000 and is still maintained by the State, the Court is further burdened to justify the removal of nativity displays over issues of public funds and labor being used to support them. After all, why is it unconstitutional for taxpayers to pay modestly for a nativity display on public property, but not unconstitutional for taxpayers to pay handsomely for a government-commissioned apotheosis display?
The removal of stand-alone nativity scenes from the public square can be stopped.
How can you help save Christmas nativity displays? Before any more nativity scenes are removed, demand the Court examine the Constitutionality of the Apotheosis of Washington with the same criteria that it examines nativity scene cases. Call, write, or visit your representatives at the local, state, and federal levels and voice your concern.
Share this article to those who are caught along the frontlines in the war on Christmas and demand justice.
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