A big story in Iowa this weekend involves Ames High School. Ames is the home of Iowa State University. (Iowa State is home of the Cyclones and the University of Iowa in Iowa City is home of the Hawkeyes.)
A year ago the BIG news out of Ames High School was where Harrison Barnes would go play college basketball. He was the #1 high school basketball player in the country (yes, that is true) and picked North Carolina.
This year Ames High is back in the news. Just as I was disappointed Harrison Barnes did not pick Iowa State, Drake, the University of Northern Iowa or even some school in eastern Iowa called the University of Iowa to attend, the news from Ames is again disheartening.
Last week a person donated a nice Christmas tree to the school. It was decorated with some lights and Iowa State University decorations and placed in the cafeteria.
I am not sure if the above image is the actual tree but you get the idea. It was called a "winter tree" (God forbid you would say Christmas tree) and was primarily intended for the school's winter dance.
However, apparently someone complained that the tree was too religious and so the school officials - exhibiting the backbone of a jelly fish - removed the tree.
The school officials should have told the overly sensitive people to (1) get a life and/or (2) deal with it and/or (3) go to hell. The school should have told those people they were over reacting and that the generic Christmas tree was not going to go anywhere. Thank you very much.
I am all for diversity and being sensitive to other people's beliefs. But our United States Supreme Court has ruled that Christmas is a secular holiday as well as a religious one. If a courthouse or government office wishes to put up Santa Claus with his reindeer or a lighted tree or candy canes that is okay. Really, it is.
Even a nativity scene is legally permitted if it is part of an overall Christmas display.
(Yes, I know. That is beyond gaudy but it illustrates the point.)
So Ames High School, which is regarded as being a very excellent school, is not doing a good job of teaching diversity when its solution is to just take the tree down and cave in to the complaints of a few overly sensitive people.
We need to embrace each other - not exclude each other.
Instead of defending its already overly politically correct "winter tree" it just allowed the Grinch to take even that away. Why not encourage people to say "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Hanukkah" or "Happy Kwanzaa" or just "Have a nice day" instead of pretending to live in a vacuum? There is nothing wrong with Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or just appreciating a nice day. They are all good.
Oh well. What can you say? It is sad the kids at Ames High School have to deal with such nonsense. By doing what they have done, the officials at the school have created a huge controversy when their objective was to avoid one. There are times when common sense is a good thing and should be followed.
Speaking of Christmas trees (and Christmas tree farms are actually a fairly big business!) here's my ideal Christmas tree.
Thanks for stopping by and Merry Christmas to you!