Send a Christmas Card to the ACLU
Netlore Archive: Forwarded email urges recipients to flood the New York offices of the ACLU with Christmas cards because 'they are working so hard to get rid of Christmas.'
Description: Forwarded email
Circulating since: Dec 2005
Email text contributed by Leslie Y., Dec. 20, 2005:
Subject: Christmas Card
Email text contributed by Bob S., Dec. 18, 2005:
Subject: about sending Christmas Cards
Analysis: This Christmas-themed email first began circulating in December 2005. The question I'm most frequently asked about it is whether or not the address given for ACLU headquarters is correct.
The second most frequently asked question is whether or not it's true that part of the American Civil Liberty Union's mission is to "get rid of Christmas."
Granted, the ACLU has litigated no small number of cases challenging the placement of religious displays (including Christmas nativity scenes, etc.) on government property over the past several decades. But the point of this activity, per the ACLU's own position statements, has never been to "ban Christmas" itself. Rather, the point is to protect the religious freedom of all Americans, of all faiths, by challenging the governmental sanction of any particular religion.
In the words of Fran Quigley, executive director of the Indiana ACLU, "the ACLU is committed to preserving the Constitutional guarantee of religious freedom for all. We agree with the U.S. Supreme Court's firm rulings that this freedom means that children who grow up in non-Christian homes should not be made to feel like outsiders in their own community's courthouse, legislature or public schoolhouse."
Some Americans disagree with that point of view, of course, while others perhaps agree in principle but feel the ACLU pursues its mission with too much zeal. Those who wish to voice their objections by mailing Christmas cards to ACLU headquarters are well within their rights to do so.
They should not deceive themselves by subscribing to the notion that a mass mailing will "freeze" the ACLU's operations, however. It didn't happen when conservative radio host Mike Gallagher instigated a similar campaign in 2003. It didn't happen in 2005 when this email first went into circulation. There's no reason to suppose it will work any better this year, or next.
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Sources and further reading:
The Anti-Christmas ACLU
Newsmax.com, 10 December 2003
How the ACLU Didn't Steal Christmas
American Civil Liberties Union, 7 December 2005
A Fictional 'War on Christmas'
USA Today (editorial), 18 December 2005
Last updated: 11/19/10