Today I will be in Worcester taping the Christmas Show (it will not be live but it will be awesome!). The topic will be the Christ in Christmas and the Church and the media. With less than 7 hours before taping of the show it is so nice of the Government and the media to provide me more fodder:
Federal Reserve examiners came to Perkins bank last week to make sure banks are complying with a long list of regulations. The team from Kansas City deemed a Bible verse of the day, crosses on the teller’s counter and buttons that say “Merry Christmas, God With Us,” were inappropriate. The Bible verse of the day on the Internet also had to be taken down.
As I’m fond of pointing out Christmas is a FEDERAL HOLIDAY as I’m sure federal regulators should know.
As you might guess this garnered some attention:
the media caught wind of the story and Republican Members of Congress wrote to Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke
Most grade schools do not produce this level of foolishness. Indeed this form of stupidity is learned at one place, radicalized public universities.
So both Oklahoma Senators wrote a letter to the Federal Reserve and with a new Tea Party controlled House with Ron Paul as the chair of the Banking Committee this was going to mean bad news.
Ya think, and on the legal side:
It seems to me that the Fed action is a pretty clear First Amendment violation. Businesses may indeed be barred from stating that they will not engage in commercial transactions with members of certain groups; that’s a somewhat unusual but well-settled aspect of First Amendment “commercial speech doctrine,” which is more properly thought of “commercial advertising doctrine.” (See Pittsburgh Press Co. v. Pittsburgh Comm’n on Human Rels. (1973), which has been cited favorably by the Court even in more recent commercial speech cases.) But businesses retain a First Amendment right to express their views, including even views that might be actually seen as insults to particular groups, see, e.g., Sambo’s Restaurants, Inc. v. City of Ann Arbor (6th Cir. 1981). And businesses certainly retain a First Amendment right to say things that might simply be seen as expressing endorsement of a particular religion.
As you might guess the outcry caused a reversal
The small-town bank in Oklahoma will be able to restore its Christian signs and symbols after all, thanks in part to public outcry against the Federal Reserve.
The president of Payne County Bank, Lynn Kinder, said he spoke with the second in command at the Federal Reserve late Thursday evening. Both sides agreed to work out the issue.
“The federal reserve immediately took action, ” Kinder said in a statement. “And allowed us to restore our Christian display of items and verses on our television and website until a final determination is made. It appears that the matter will be resolved.”
Final determination means until the heat is off most likely. Don Surber cuts to the chase:
What does that rule have to do with good banking?
Once again some federal governmental bureaucracy is pursuing a political agenda that has nothing to do with its mission — and is falling down on the job.
From the Associated Press: “Regulators on Friday shuttered three small banks in Georgia and one each in Florida, Arkansas and Minnesota, raising to 157 the number of U.S. banks brought down this year by the struggling economy and soured loans.”
If federal regulators had done their job all along instead of Mickey Mousing around over some teller’s button our banks would be more sound and our economy better.
Congress should strike down that rule and in fact go through all the regulations to make sure that the bank examiners are examining the bank’s books and not the teller’s buttons.
I’m sure the GOP congress will have a few things to say about this.
Meanwhile it isn’t just Christ being banned from Christmas:
Santa Claus, as portrayed by Dennis Jackson, won’t be visiting students at the Head Start classes in St. Peter this year.
Jackson has made appearances the past four years at the classes for students who need help preparing for school, but this year officials said, “No, no, no.”
The reason: The classes have many immigrant children who don’t celebrate Christmas, says the Mankato Free Press.
Perhaps we should change the name “St. Peter” too, don’t want to offend anyone:
Chris Marben, who coordinates regional Head Start programs through Mankato-based Minnesota Valley Action Council: “We have Somali families in the program. We’re respecting the wishes of families in the program.”
She didn’t say how many objections were made, but said more than one would be enough to cancel Santa.
Actually since “Chris” might be mistaken for “Christ” I think in the interest of cultural diversity you should change your name to avoid offending anyone. I would suggest: “Dhimmi”